The Journal of Modern African Studies

Revitalising African agriculture through innovative business models and organisational arrangements: promising developments in the traditional crops sector 1

Cosmas Milton Obote Ochieng a1
a1 International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Article author query
ochieng cm   [Google Scholar] 


Within the last four years, a number of high profile reports outlining new strategies for pulling African agriculture out of its current impasse have emerged. These include the Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme of NEPAD, and the InterAcademy Council Report commissioned by UN Secretary General Koffi Annan. Whilst these strategies are a welcome improvement on those that have characterised African agriculture in the past, it is argued here that like their predecessors, they fail to focus on business-competitive approaches as an integral part of the reform package needed to stimulate African agricultural productivity and development. This paper draws on innovation, business and organisation literature to highlight some of these approaches. It focuses on three concepts: value innovation, lead user focus and organisational value logic.

(Published Online February 26 2007)


1 I thank Judith Heyer, Heike Hoeffler, this editor, and two anonymous referees for their comments on an early draft of this paper. I am grateful to Hanna Wossenyeleh for her excellent research assistance.