The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation is now open for applications!

RAEng Africa A4

The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation aims to stimulate, celebrate and reward innovation and entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa and opens for applications on Thursday 6 March 2014.

The Africa Prize encourages ambitious and talented sub-Saharan African engineers from all disciplines to apply their skills to develop scalable solutions to local challenges, highlighting the importance of engineering as an enabler of improved quality of life and economic development. Crucial commercialisation support will be awarded to a shortlist of innovative applicants, through a six month period of training and mentoring. Following this period of mentorship, finalists will be invited to present at an event held in Africa and a winner will be selected to receive £25,000.

Applications are invited from engineers affiliated with a university or research institute who have developed innovations that can provide scalable solutions to local challenges. Engineers from sub-Saharan Africa and from all engineering disciplines are eligible to enter.

The Africa Prize is generously supported by The Shell Centenary Scholarship Fund, Consolidated Contractors Company, ConocoPhillips and the Mo Ibrahim Foundation.

If you would like to know more or are interested in being involved please contact:africaprize@raeng.org.uk

Application documents


Boosting Agricultural and Food Production in Africa: Panel Discussion Marshals Evidence to Inform Policymaking

Click on image to watch video.A high-level panel discussion held during the 2014 IMF-World Bank Spring Meetings focused on the challenge of increasing agricultural productivity in Africa. Hallmarking the innovative event were rapid fire presentations marshaling evidence from cutting-edge research to dispel myths and inform policymaking. The discussion brought together African Ministers of Finance, Economic Development and Industry, together with researchers and policymakers to chart the way forward. Click on the photo to be directed to a video of the discussion.


2014 Social Progress Index

skitch (1)The Social Progress Index offers a framework by which multiple dimensions of progress, success, and drive toward greater well-being worldwide can be examined. Countries are scored according to basic human needs, such as nutrition, sanitation, and medical care; foundations of well-being, including access to education and ecological sustainability; and opportunities, such as personal freedom and degree of corruption. Explore the 2014 Index here.


The G8 and the fight for the future of African farming – interactive

Launched in 2012, the G8’s New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition aims to transform the nature of agriculture and food production in Africa. Controversially, it gives agribusiness a seat at the table alongside governments and aid donors. As part of the initiative, African governments have said they will make their countries more attractive to private investors. Explore the promises that have been made and where.
As part of the New Alliance, 10 African governments have signed up to change dozens of laws, policies and regulations to make their countries more attractive to the private sector. Collectively, they have made more than 200 commitments, including the overhaul of seed and tax laws and the setting aside of hundreds of thousands of hectares of land for commercial investors.

alliance for food security map

Critics say this has happened largely behind closed doors, with little information available to small farmers and other citizens about the changes their governments have agreed upon. The guide below opens the books – explore each government’s commitments, the laws being changed, and the progress made so far.

How the commitments break down

How the commitments break down

Information on governments’ policy commitments was extracted from their co-operation frameworks agreed with donors and private investors. It was pulled from pdf documents for each country and collated in a database. Each commitment was coded based on whether it related to land, seeds, tax or other areas. Source: The Guardian


Top Priorities for Africa in 2014

The World Bank Vice President for Africa AFC, Makhtar Diop, joined panelists at the Brookings Institution to discuss the top priorities and major challenges facing the continent in the year ahead. Press play below to watch the video.

Looking Ahead: Top Priorities for Africa in 2014

__________________________________________________________________ Global Forum For Innovators in Agriculture

Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture

World’s leading innovators to speak at GFIA 2014

With diminishing resources and a growing population, the world has to change the way it grows food.From technology giants Google, Sharp and Paypal, to entrepreneurs and scientists, innovation companies are developing technology to revolutionise the way the world produces food.In February, the world’s leading innovators will convene in Abu Dhabi to present their solutions for a more sustainable future.

Mr. Bill Gates Founder, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Dr. Mark Post The scientist behind the Googlefunded lab burger Dr. Frank Rijsberman CEO CGIAR Consortium Mr. Andras Forgacs Pioneer of 3D printed meat and leather

Discover which BIG idea in agriculture will make your business more competitive at the world’s largest showcase of sustainable agriculture innovations.

Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture 3-5 Feb 2014, Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, UAE.

1. Learn how to reduce water consumption by 90% by using the Film Farming innovation from Agricel 2. ‘Set and forget’ your irrigation system with the solar powered IRIS solution 3. Desalinate your water with no chemicals using Aqua-4D® electromagnetic treatment 4. Understand why the 3D modelling of your crops will help you make the right decisions for crop protection, pruning and harvesting 5. See how Aquanue’s SICRA system is growing groupers in half the time taken in sea cage systems

The exhibition is free to attend and conference places can be purchased from US$200.


  Driving Innovation for an Agricultural Revolution


Social Supermarkets to Fight Food Poverty

social supermarkets

social supermarkets

One third of the world’s food goes to waste every year. It’s happening on the farm, at the grocery store and in our own homes. In an effort to repurpose this food and reduce waste, two grocery offshoots are now testing a “social supermarket” model. Products which are blemished or past their sell-by dates, yet still perfectly edible, will be offered at deeply discounted prices. Learn more about former Trader Joe’s president Doug Raunch’s new project, Daily Table, and Britain’s Community Shop.


‘Agriculture is a not a development activity, it’s a business’

press play

Akinwumi Adesina, Nigeria’s minister of agriculture, told Devex Impact it is “too early to talk about results” from the G8’s New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition. He praised the effort, however, as a positive step toward removing agriculture from the “development mindset.” Nigeria joined Ghana, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Mozambique and Tanzania when it became a partner to the New Alliance in June of this year. “Agriculture a sector where we should be creating a lot of wealth, not managing poverty,” said Adesina, during a recent visit to Washington D.C., where he addressed the World Cocoa Foundation’s semi-annual partnership meeting. Adesina also responded to critics who have charged that multinationals are not well-suited to work directly with smallholder farmers through the New Alliance. “Africa should not be afraid of growth,” he said. “In Nigeria, we welcome large players, but we’re going to manage the investment in such a way that it benefits the smallholder farmers.” Source: DEVEX.com


New Effort Launched to Measure and Monitor Global Food Loss and Waste

foodwaste-blog A significant share of food grown is not eaten. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that 32 percent of all food produced in the world is lost or wasted. In this context, “food loss and waste” refers to the edible parts of plants and animals that are produced or harvested for human consumption but that are not ultimately eaten by people. When converted into calories, global food loss and waste amount to approximately 24 percent of all food produced. In short, one out of every four food calories intended for people is not ultimately consumed. On October 21, 2013, the World Resources Institute (WRI) announced the first step in designing a global standard for measuring food loss and waste. The forthcoming guidance, called the “Food Loss and Waste Protocol,” will enable countries and companies to measure and monitor the food loss and waste that occur within their boundaries and value chains in a credible, practical, and consistent manner. The announcement was made at the Global Green Growth Forum (3GF) conference in Copenhagen, with the leaders of UN Environment Programme (UNEP), World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), WRI, and others. The director general of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) also participated in the forum. Read the full article HERE Source: wri.org __________________________________________________________________ GROW Week – Nigeria Nigerian-Farmers-NigeriaIntel Putting agriculture in Nigeria on display! During grow week;

  • Small scale farmers – particularly women family farmers – will have the opportunity to exhibit their farm produce and products and be honored at Nigeria’s national agricultural show, organized by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
  • GROW Week will also visit some radio stations to talk about the WFD 2013 theme and the Impact of Investing in Women Small Scale Farmers to commemorate the International Rural Women’s Day.
  • To catch young people’s attention for agriculture, GROW will engage with secondary schools to establish or revive Young Farmers GROW clubs.
  • Other notable activities include a “sensitization walk”, a quiz competition among students and a symposium.

As part of the GROW campaign, Nigerian celebrities Tuface Idibia, Lami Phillips, and Sound Sultan have teamed up with five francophone West African artists notable among which is a favorite of mine; Baaba Maal, to record a song calling on African leaders to keep their promises. In solidarity with our small scale farmers – let’s listen, enjoy, and most importantly share the song!

Source: Oxfam.org __________________________________________________________________ 2013 Global Hunger Index (GHI) Launched GHI2013 INTERACTIVE MAP

The Global Hunger Index (GHI) is a tool designed to comprehensively measure and track hunger globally and by region and country. Calculated each year by IFPRI, and published in partnership with Welthungerhilfe with Concern Worldwide, the GHI highlights successes and failures in hunger reduction and provides insights into the drivers of hunger, and food and nutrition insecurity. IFPRI will be hosting a GHI Launch event this Friday (10/18) at 12:15 p.m. (the event will also be livestreamed). Listed below are the available GHI resources:


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