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Low Funding of Market Information Systems Limiting Agric Productivity

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In the ideal world, Market Information Systems (MIS) are a farmer’s lifeline. In an instant, the farmer is able to analyse the best market for his agricultural produce; thanks to the volume of information flowing through the supply chains, hence ensuring increased transparency.

In the ideal world, Market Information Systems (MIS) are a farmer’s lifeline. In an instant, the farmer is able to analyse the best market for his agricultural produce; thanks to the volume of information flowing through the supply chains, hence ensuring increased transparency.

The development of the Internet has further reinforced the ability of MIS to provide valuable service to the agricultural sector.

Prof. Lillian Tibatemwa-Ekirikubinza, DVC(AA) makes her introductory remarks at the 7th PhD Dissemination Series 11th Nov 2011, Makerere UniversityHowever, these systems have been carefully built up over time, thanks to the provision of improved agricultural market information and continuous investment. In the Seventh PhD Dissemination series, Dr. Andrew Muganga Kizito a Lecturer in the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science, College of Business and Management Sciences, made a presentation on the role of MIS in agricultural marketing, the characteristics of information, and the environment in which the MIS operates and hence some of the ways of funding MIS activities.

Prof. Lillian Tibatemwa-Ekirikubinza, the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic Affairs) in her welcome remarks stressed the importance of the dissemination series as an avenue for staff to share research from their respective disciplines, with the university community. This sharing it is further envisaged will create a community of scholars and help in the formation of research networks and chains.

“We must encourage interdisciplinary research, because that is the only way we will be able to effectively solve the problems of society,” she added.

Dr. Andrew Muganga Kizito makes his presentation "Economics of Information and Its Implications for Agricultural Market Information Systems Design and Impact" at the 7th PhD Dissemination Series 11th Nov 2011 Makerere UniversityIn his presentation Dr. Muganga noted that well designed MIS helped create a level playing field by improving the welfare of agricultural producers as a result of providing up-to-date market information, hence creating a level playing field and increasing production supply. These advances would in turn foster the development of polices, and provide a monitoring tool for both governments and donor agencies.

Dr. Muganga further examined characteristics of information like indivisibility, non-appropriability, non-rivalry, quality uncertainty; a complicated property, whereby users cannot judge whether the information being offered is good or bad until they have purchased/obtained it. However this property leads to the creation of a high information cost good, which the user is likely not to buy, or most certainly under invest in it. He then looked at the perishability of the information that considers the importance of information, based on the frequency of availability i.e. whereas a farmer might require the information on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to sustain his business, a policymaker on the other hand would be comfortable with receiving a batch of the same information monthly or every other month.

Dr. Barnabas Kiiza the discussant makes adds his voiceHe further examined factors relating to the environment in which an MIS operates such as; inflation, which would lead to price uncertainty, hence increasing the demand for a market information system, while factors like high number of traders in the market would almost eliminate the need for the MIS as they’d each seek to attract the most number of buyers by offering the best market price.

In concluding his presentation, Dr. Muganga outlined four ways of funding MIS activities as: administrative or government funding using tax money; a combination of administrative and donor funding, and private effective demand; tie-in-sale of market information and members fees; and private effective demand through subscriptions fees and information sales.

Dr. Wilberforce Kisamba Mugerwa, Chairman of the National Planning Authority (NPA) graced the presentationIn his reactions, the discussant Dr. Barnabas Kiiza, Department of Agribusiness and Natural Resource Economics, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences tasked the presenter to examine scenarios of how the small holder farmers may be able to benefit from a MIS scenario analysis of the Ugandan market, given that there were no MIS operating on a large scale. He also noted the need to examine the different African MIS models and identify a hybrid which is easily accessible to small holder farmers, considering that most MIS are ICT-based.

For any research findings to be effective, it ought to address the planning and policy needs of a nation. Dr. Wilberforce Kisamba-Mugerwa, the Chairman, National Planning Authority who graced the occasion commended the Office of the Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic Affairs) for the innovation of research dissemination. He commended the presenter for capturing the gaps in MIS design and further charged him to come up with a policy brief.

The Chief Guest at the 7th PhD Dissemination Dr. Fred Muhumuza makes his remarksThe Chief Guest Dr. Fred Muhumuza, Economic Advisor, Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development commended Dr. Muganga for choosing the agricultural market information sector to conduct his research, observing that this was a relatively untapped sector.

He challenged the university as the largest and premier public institution to continue supporting policy makers “As the premier public university, you cannot afford not to be the largest but must at the same time continue to give us that premier cream that we the policy makers cannot get from anywhere else” he added. He further urged the university to disseminate to both public and target audiences.

Dr. Muhumuza further urged the presenter to narrow down on areas like; small scale, large scale, value adders and processors, inputs, and so on, considering that production and productivity are a big agenda for the Government of Uganda.

 

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Dr. Andrew Muganga Kizito Abstract: doc (37KB), pdf (11KB)

7th PhD Dissemination Poster: pdf (319KB)

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Veteran Professor changed Makerere and Higher Education

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Professor Pancras John Mukasa Ssebuwufu (L) receives a plaque and citation from RUFORUM Board Member and Vice Chancellor Ndejje University-Professor Eriabu Lugujjo (Right) on 6th May 2021 at the RUFORUM Secretariat, Plot 155 Garden Hill, Makerere University Main Campus,

When Professor John Ssebuwufu ambled up to receive a certificate of recognition for his ‘exceptional’ contribution to higher education from the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) at Makerere University (MU), he was thinking of many things, such as rewarding staff, that he could have done differently to impact university education more.

But he did what he could have done, under the circumstances.

He presided over MU (in 1993) when student enrolment was 5,000 and left in 2004 when the population was surging to more than 15,000.

He emphasised the use of information communication technologies in almost all the institutions he had been involved in and sent many academic staff on exchanges to boost research and innovation. Now, more African universities engage in ground-breaking research.

So, he proceeded to accept his recognition and make his acceptance speech, which was mostly about gratitude.

Ssebuwufu, 74, who is currently the chancellor at Kyambogo University and the vice-chancellor of the University of Kisubi, is credited for his exemplary leadership and pragmatic methods that have shaped higher education in Uganda and Africa as a whole.

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Japan Africa Dream Scholarship (JADS) Program 2021/2022

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Japan Africa Dream Scholarship (JADS) Program 2021/2022. Photo credit: AfDB

The Japan Africa Dream Scholarship (JADS) Program is a capacity building project by the AfDB and Japan which was initiated in 2017 with the aim of providing two-year scholarship awards to highly achieving African graduate students to enable them to undergo post-graduate studies (i.e. a two-year Master’s degree program) in selected priority development areas on the continent and Japan. The overarching goal the AfDB and the Government of Japan seek to attain is to enhance skills and human resources development in Africa in under the Bank’s High 5s agenda (i.e. “Feed Africa”, “Light up Africa”, “Industrialize Africa”, “Integrate Africa” and “Improve the quality of life of the people of Africa”) and key Japanese development assistance initiatives. JADS core areas of study focus include energy, agriculture, health, environmental sustainability, and engineering. The program also seeks to promote inter-university collaboration and university-industry partnerships between Japan and Africa. Upon completion of their studies, the JADS scholars are expected to return to their home countries to apply and disseminate their newly acquired knowledge and skills in the public and private sectors, and contribute to national and continental socio-economic development.

About the JADS program

The JADS Program is open to applicants from AfDB member countries with relevant professional experience and a history of supporting their countries’ development efforts who are applying to a graduate degree program in energy development and related discipline.  The program does not provide scholarships to any other graduate degree program.

The scholarship program provides tuition, a monthly living stipend, round-trip airfare, health insurance, and travel allowance.

Upon completion of their studies, the beneficiary scholars are expected to return to their home countries to apply and disseminate their newly acquired knowledge and skills, and contribute to the promotion of sustainable development of their countries.

Who is Eligible to Apply?

The program is open to those who have gained admission to an approved Masters degree course at a Japanese partner university. Candidates should be 35 years old or younger; in good health; with a Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent in the energy area or related area; and have a superior academic record. Upon completion of their study programs, scholars are expected to return to their home country to contribute to its economic and social development.

Application Procedures

  1. Applicant requests for information and application forms and procedures from the chosen JADS partner university. For any inquiries, please contact JADS@AFDB.ORG
  2. Applicant completes required documents and sends them to the university.
  3. University evaluates and selects applicants.
  4. University sends selected candidates to the AfDB.
  5. AfDB reviews submissions from universities, prepares and approves the final list.
  6. AfDB contacts selected awardees, and informs the universities.

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WHS Regional Meeting Africa 2021: Finance Chairperson’s Update

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Prof. Tonny J. Oyana, Finance Chairperson, World Health Summit Regional Meeting Africa, June 2021.

SOPs: Our plan is to have 200 sets of people in different spacious rooms…

Prof. Tonny j. oyana, finance chairperson whs regional meeting africa

We are sincerely grateful to our sponsors…

Over 15 core sponsors…

Sessions: 60% Virtual, 40% Onsite…

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