Addressing the research–development disconnect: lessons from East and Central African Highlands

A growing concern about the limited impact of agricultural research and development on natural-resources management (NRM) and livelihoods in the highlands of East and Central Africa led to the establishment in 1995 of the African Highlands Initiative, with a mandate to develop methodologies for integrated NRM and institutionalise them in partner organisations. Emerging lessons show that a combination of innovative approaches is necessary for enhanced uptake of NRM practices. These approaches include working with strategic partners and multidisciplinary teams; involving multiple stakeholders; adopting appropriate entry points based on farmers’ priorities; and use of linked technologies with complementary and synergetic effects.