The annual Prolinnova International Partners Workshop (IPW) was held in mid-March 2012 in Bamako, Mali, hosted by ADAF-Gallè, the Malian NGO that coordinates PROFEIS (Promoting Farmer Experimentation and Innovation in the Sahel) in Mali.
Before the IPW, there were parallel meetings of the Prolinnova Oversight Group (POG) and the Prolinnova Country Platforms (CPs) that are piloting Local Innovation Support Funds (LISFs). The main IPW was held under the banner of “Building research on farmer-generated solutions and not on constraints” (Bâtir la recherche à partir des solutions paysannes et non sur les contraintes). The public event was opened by Mr Tiassé Coulibaly, President of the Association of Professional Farmer Organisations, and highlighted farmer innovation through the Prolinnova film, slides of the achievements of Malian farmers and presentations of farmer innovators themselves. The CPs and farmer innovators shared their experiences in the marketplace, a traditional component of every IPW. In the subsequent internal part of the meeting, the CPs discussed experiences and studies on multistakeholder partnerships in promoting farmer-led joint experimentation and innovation processes.
Discussions on the second day focused on new activities related to promoting local innovation in adaptation to climate change, such as the LINEX-CCA (Local INnovation and EXperimentation: an entry point to Climate-Change Adaptation) project in Asia, and how these activities can be linked with policy dialogue at national and international levels. The regional groups of CPs (Asia, East Africa, West Africa, Southern Africa) strategised about joint activities and related fundraising. Sonali Bisht, the coordinator of Prolinnova–India and the NGO member in the Organising Committee for the Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development in Uruguay (Oct–Nov 2012), discussed with Prolinnova partners how their experiences could feed into this event.