For a Knowledge Management approach and a Capitalisation process

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KIT actively works towards bringing a voice to farmers and agricultural producers across Africa. Through the preparation and implementation of development policies, KIT has contributed to making a positive and lasting impact on agriculture and rural development on a continental level.

By working with a variety of stakeholders, including: multi-national companies, governments, funders, NGOs and farmer organisations, KIT is able to establish sustainable and inclusive value chains for the agricultural sector, not just in Africa, but also across Asia and Latin America.

Increasingly people are realising the importance of capturing experiences and lessons learnt from the implementation of development projects. Where project staff and partners are often too involved in the daily work and often lack the required documentation skills, KIT helps the projects by undertaking a systematic capitalisation process. This process involves recording, documenting and analysing the real-life experiences of any given project, allowing the difficulties encountered and lessons learnt to be highlighted in the most succinct way possible. KIT emphasises the importance of “informing” within the process, through sharing knowledge, inspiring others and encouraging stakeholders, including men and women small-scale farmers, to contribute.

The capitalisation process has benefits at three distinct levels, which are key to its success. Firstly, the farmers can use the learning in their own livelihoods. Secondly, development staff can integrate findings in their approach and become more effective. Finally, the process informs, and therefore, influences policy constructively. This knowledge sharing aspect means that KIT can turn this valuable field experience into documented knowledge, building new skills and expertise in the process.

At KIT we place experiences in a broader context,  and not just focus on success stories, but instead, learn from what has actually happened. Through various workshops, and using KIT’s innovative writeshops, knowledge can be mobilised, analysed, written down and situated within a broader conceptual framework.

KIT’s collaboration with Belgium Technical Cooperation (BTC) is a perfect example of the success of knowledge management through a capitalisation process. Over the past four years, and working closely with local project teams and other key stakeholders, KIT teams have helped analyse, document and spread important findings of six large development programs. KIT has aided in ensuring these findings were captured well before project closure. Just last month the successful capitalisation process of the BTC BARVAFOR project in Senegal led to a presentation of main conclusions to policy makers during a policy dialogue workshop, and to the publication of a number of relevant papers on the development and management of water and irrigation infrastructure.