The publication comes as Africa irrigation has returned back onto the agricultural-development agenda. Many major initiatives are now stressing its importance. However, Farmer-led Irrigation Development moves away from the usual suggestions of big private or public investment in large-scale irrigation development. Instead, the big-investment, big-development model is being replaced with FLID; a model in which farmers themselves drive the development or improvements in their water use for agriculture.
This silent revolution of Farmer-led Irrigation Development is receiving more international attention and recognition among irrigation experts, policymakers and donors. This has been partly through the efforts and joint-work of organisations like KIT Royal Tropical Institute and Wageningen University and Research.
One key example of this work was launched in 2016: the Dutch-funded Smart Water for Agriculture in Kenya project. This has made Farmer-led Irrigation Development central to its work. During it, Wageningen University and Research and KIT Royal Tropical Institute have supported the project’s team in documenting its approach to Farmer-led Irrigation Development support. From that collaboration new insights into the farmer-led process were developed, helping lay-down part of the foundation for the new publication.
Accelerating Farmer-led Irrigation Development comes in an accessible form showing the diversity of intervention areas that need attention for it to be successful. It covers theory, practice and more—and is available for download now.