Evidence-based opportunities for out-scaling climate-smart agriculture in East Africa
Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) is being widely promoted as a solution for food insecurity
and climate change adaptation in food systems of sub-Saharan Africa, while simultaneously
reducing the rate of greenhouse gas emissions. Governments throughout Africa are writing
policies and programs to promote CSA practices despite uncertainty about the ability for
practices to meet the triple CSA objectives of CSA. We conducted a systematic review of 175
peer-reviewed and grey literature studies, to gauge the impact of over seventy potential CSA
practices on CSA outcomes in Tanzania and Uganda. Using a total of 6,342 observations, we
found that practice impacts were highly context (i.e. farming system and location) specific.
Nevertheless, practice effect across CSA outcomes generally agreed in direction. While our
results suggest that CSA is indeed possible, lack of mitigation data precludes a more
conclusive statement. Furthermore, the inclusion of potential adoption rates changes the
potential of CSA practices to achieve benefits at scale. Given the uncertainty and variable
impacts of practices across regions and outcomes, it is critical for decision makers to prioritize
practices based on their desired outcomes and local context.
Lamanna C, Namoi N, Kimaro A, Mpanda M, Egeru A, Okia C, Ramirez-Villegas J, Mwongera C, Ampaire E, van Asten P, Winowiecki L, Läderach P, Rosenstock TS. 2016. Evidence-based opportunities for out-scaling climate-smart agriculture in East Africa. CCAFS Working Paper no. 172. Copenhagen, Denmark: CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS).