African Agricultural Leadership Institute

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Vision and mission


AALI’s vision is to “promote leadership in the transformation of African agriculture”

This vision requires that agriculture be seen as a business, a business, which attracts the private sector and investments from governments and development banks to stimulate and modernize its progress. This approach contrasts with the current situation where agriculture appears to be a neglected sector, with insufficient budget allocations from governments, and largely dependent on the priorities and funding of the donor community.

Agriculture should be seen as an activity that can substantially contribute to import substitution by stimulating economic development through market-based and private sector-led infrastructure. For this to happen, the mindset of current leaders must change at all levels to recognize that a modernized and more resilient agriculture must drive Africa’s future economic growth. Success in agriculture requires strong leadership, as demonstrated in Nigeria between 2011-2015, but also in Ethiopia, Rwanda, Ghana and Malawi.

Indeed, the increase in food demand in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is expected to grow from US$35 billion in 2015 to over US$110 billion by 2025.

To achieve this, AALI believes that there is a great need to promote leadership in African agricultural development among experienced African professionals, whose numbers continue to grow and who share the perspectives and voices that can lift the many continental challenges.

This is how AALI envisions dynamic and bold African leadership, supported by experienced African agricultural professionals. This, in order to catalyze public and private investments, to accelerate and support the necessary agricultural transformation of Africa, in particular for the poorest households, women and young people.

AALI works not only to support national and regional engagement, but also to promote alignment of research and delivery. This, towards the achievement of countries’ strategic objectives for agricultural transformation.

Another important challenge facing African agriculture is the average age of the farmer (60 years old) and the disinterest of young people in agriculture. There’s a gap of about 30 years between young and old farmers, and if we don’t do anything about it, there could be a major crisis. African youth consider agriculture as Poverty, Punishment and Pain (The famous 3P identified by N. Sanginga during the creation of the Agripreneurs movement at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), 12/08/2012). The main reasons that prevent young people from adopting agriculture are inadequate education, training and knowledge (or, when educated, limited access to employment), limited access to financial services, reduced access to land, market and supply chain access constraints, and lack of voice and empowerment. Youth participation is paramount to the country’s agricultural transformation agenda, especially where it can provide attractive and profitable business opportunities led by the private sector.

Recognizing the invaluable, long overlooked value and wealth of young people and the many and diverse opportunities that agriculture offers as a response to the economic and development needs facing many African countries, AALI has chosen to bank on them to to disseminate its vision in a pragmatic way and guarantee its sustainability. This is because young people are the backbone of the future, and no sustainable development can be effective without them.

To achieve its vision, AALI sets itself the mission of:

  1. To offer advisory services to African governments seeking to modernize their agriculture and better implement their rural development and climate action programs;
  2. Empower young people by giving them the knowledge and means to influence policies, to become agricultural producers, service providers, influencers and agents of change. With them, AALI is ensuring that agriculture once again becomes an attractive and lucrative career path;
  3. Contribute to the transformation of countries’ agricultural agendas, through the growth of the private sector, which translates into the introduction and promotion of efficient technologies, production inputs, services and value-added products.

It is important to recognize that  transformation of the African agricultural sector is an inclusive issue. And, true agricultural transformation can only take place in countries with the combination of research, delivery, agribusiness and a willing and well-informed political preparedness and enabling environment. This is complemented by holistic mentorship from the next generation of multidisciplinary experts. Acceleration and Equity Agricultural Transformation