Learning in innovation systems in South Africa

In South Africa (SA), the Prolinnova network is linked with the EU-funded JOLISAA (Joint Learning in Innovation Systems in African Agriculture) project through Brigid Letty, Institute of Natural Resources, coordinator of Prolinnova–SA and member of the JOLISAA–SA team. At a JOLISAA-SA workshop in late January 2012, extension agents and researchers involved in three cases of innovation

– bulk buying of farming inputs by savings and credit groups in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), soil fertility management in Limpopo and infield water-harvesting in Free State – met in Venda in Limpopo Province to learn how to explore jointly the innovation processes and the linkages between all actors. The fieldwork was focused on the soil-fertility case. In the next months, the workshop participants will involve still more local actors and university students from SA and Europe to investigate the cases more deeply and to draw lessons about innovation for practice and policy. The workshop report brings initial findings about the soil-fertility case and about the joint learning during the workshop. The bulk-buying case comes from the Prolinnova–SA work in KZN in piloting Local Innovation Support Funds. Other innovation cases included in the inventory made by the JOLISAA-SA team are summarised in its most recent newsletter.

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