Agricultural research and extension linkages: Challenges and intervention options
The article presents the historical evolution of attempts made in Ethiopia to strengthen the agriculture research and extension linkages since the start of formal agricultural research and extension in the early 1950s. The result reveals that there is a gradual improvement with increased types and mechanisms of the research-extension linkage in recent years that are related with (i) institutional linkages of actors of the National Agricultural Research System (NARS) with actors of formal agricultural technology delivery systems, (ii) technology demonstration and popularization promoted by the NARS in collaboration with MoA and Regional Bureaus of Agriculture (RBoA), (iii) Farmers’ Research Groups (FRGs) approach promoted by the NARS in collaboration with MoA and RBoA, (iv) Technology specific special pre-extension activities promoted by the NARS, (v) Publications made available by the NARS, and (vi) Agricultural Development Partners' Linkage Advisory Councils (ADPLACs) as research-extension linkage platforms. However, there are number of challenges that need policy and development attention to fully exploiting the potentials these approaches offer in strengthening the linkage, which is crucial for the aspired agricultural transformation.
Key words: ADPLAC, NARS, extension, agricultural research, platforms