The following excerpts of an opinion piece were written by ILRI’s Andrew Mude and originally published by The Standard newspaper (Kenya): Insurance only way to guard against weather-gone-awry phenomenon, 28 Apr 2017.
A Cornell development economist and his partners in the USAID-funded BASIS Assets and Market Access Innovation Lab have won an international award for developing a form of livestock insurance that has already proved itself in pilot testing. Now that it is scaling up, the insurance could help hundreds of thousands of African herders stave off poverty in times of drought.
The journal ‘Science’ publishes Q&A with Borlaug Field Award winner Andrew Mude
Even with the Tuesday announcement that he had won the award, Andrew Mude, who holds a doctorate in economics, remains a modest man committed to resolving the dilemma that pastoral communities, especially in northern Kenya, have endured for decades. When he was named winner of the 2016 World Food Prize’s Norman Borlaug Award for Field Research and Application this week, he could barely hold back his emotions, as the reality of his achievement hit home.
Kenyan scientist Andrew Mude won the 2016 Norman Borlaug Award for Field Research and Application on Tuesday for developing livestock insurance, using state-of-the-art technologies, for herders in East Africa’s drylands.
‘The index-based insurance program is run by the Kenya-based International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), and funded by the British, U.S. and Australian governments and the European Union. The donors subsidize the cover to make it affordable for pastoralists.
Using data from satellite imagery, insurers can assess the impact of drought on the vegetation that livestock need to survive. Could this be a lifeline for Kenyan farmers?