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SPARC supporting innovation for drylands development at the Global Landscapes Forum

Join SPARC as we foster dynamic knowledge exchange between practitioners about their experiences of drylands innovations.

Publisher SPARC

SPARC will host an online interactive session on ‘Innovative solutions to strengthen resilience in the drylands’ at the Global Landscape Forum on 2 June to broker knowledge exchange between practitioners about their experiences of drylands innovations.

Innovation, at its core, is about doing business differently. Innovation can include products, services, processes, business models, and technologies; creating value primarily through social impact as well as commercial gains. Yet not all innovations work, and not all innovations that work do so at scale - especially in arid-to-semi-arid lands (ASALs) and fragile and conflict-affected areas.

In the run up to the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, this dynamic session will present SPARC research on the landscape of innovations in drylands and conflict-affected countries in the Horn of Africa and the Sahel, and weigh up the opportunities and challenges of identifying and evaluating innovation for scaled impact. We will discuss with three leaders in the innovation space their experiences and recommendations on how to scale.

Participants will then have the opportunity to share innovations to include in the next SPARC landscape analysis, as well as share their own experiences and perceptions of innovation in dryland areas.

Speaking, and contributing to discussions, at the session will be:

  • Christabell Makokha - Senior Innovation Advisor at SPARC and current Head of Partnerships and Innovation Lead at Aceli Africa;

  • Jerioth Mwaura - Technology for Development Advisor at Mercy Corps;

  • Carmen Jaquez –  SPARC Economies, Markets and Livelihoods Team Lead and Senior Advisor for Livestock and Agriculture at Mercy Corps;

  • Dr. Hassan Bashir - Executive Director of AIID, with extensive experience as an Insurance Practitioner;

  • Catherine Le Côme - Global Technical Advisor Livestock, SNV;

  • Rupsha Banerjee - a Social Scientist in Institutions and Innovation at ILRI.

The interactive session aims to address and increase participants’ knowledge of innovative approaches and technologies available in drylands. It will also seek to identify opportunities and challenges to developing and scaling innovative solutions specific to ASALs and fragile and conflict-affected areas. Lastly, the event will also aim to contribute recommendations for additional innovations to include in the next SPARC landscape analysis.

The event will focus on four key questions:

  • What innovations exist in ASALs? What is their potential to reach impact and do so at scale?

  • Which attributes of the innovation ecosystem that catalyse innovations have the potential to reach impact and do so at scale?

  • To what extent are the innovations gender inclusive?

  • What approaches are being taken and partnerships being made to address the opportunities and challenges of scaling?

The session will run for 45 minutes, from 13:45-14:30 BST / 15:45-16:30 Nairobi time.

Be part of the discussions and join us via the Global Landscape Forum.

See you there!

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