Innovation platforms are widely used in agricultural research to connect different stakeholders to achieve common goals. To help document recent experiences and insights, the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) recently published a series of short innovation platform ‘practice briefs’ to help guide the design and implementation of innovation platforms in agricultural research for development.
This twelfth brief reflects on some of the challenges of measuring outcomes and impacts around innovation platforms.
An innovation platform is defined as ‘a space for learning and change. It is a group of individuals (who often represent organizations) with different backgrounds and interests: farmers, traders, food processors, researchers, government officials etc. The members come together to diagnose problems, identify opportunities and find ways to achieve their goals. They may design and implement activities as a platform, or coordinate activities by individual members.’
In the complex web of relationships that surround agricultural development, innovation platforms are a good way to get to the root of problems and can bring about real, durable change for many people. But showing their impact is tricky: their costs are high early on and effects may be slow in coming, hidden under the surface, and hard to predict, measure and attribute.
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|This brief is authored by Alan Duncan (ILRI), Ewen Le Borgne (ILRI), Felisberto Maute (ILRI) and Josephine Tucker (ODI). It is a contribution to the CGIAR Humidtropics research program. The development of the briefs was led by the International Livestock Research Institute; the briefs draw on experiences of the CGIAR Challenge Program on Water and Food, several CGIAR centres and partner organization.The series comprises 14 briefs: