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Lost in space: Enhancing the role of spatial analysis in strategic impact assessment

By: Wood, S | Centro Internacional de Mejoramiento de Maiz y Trigo (CIMMYT), Mexico DF (Mexico) | International Conference on Impacts of Agricultural Research and Development San José (Costa Rica) 4-7 Feb 2002.
Contributor(s): Chamberlin, J [coaut.] | Watson, D.J [ed.].
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookAnalytics: Show analyticsPublisher: Mexico, DF (Mexico) CIMMYT : 2003Description: p. 48.ISBN: 970-648-076-5.Subject(s): Crop husbandry | Developing Countries | Disease control | Ecosystems | Environment | Livestock AGROVOC | Pest control | Policies | Production economics | Spatial distribution | CIMMYT | Agricultural research AGROVOCDDC classification: 338.91 Summary: Assessing the past or potential impact of agricultural research and development at national and international scales is confounded by a great deal of real-world heterogeneity. One attraction of spatial analysis is its capacity to represent simultaneously the spatial variability of many key factors influencing agricultural production decisions and performance: climate, terrain, soils, water resources, and the physical accessibility of infrastructure and markets. In the same framework, these factors can be juxtaposed against the spatial distribution of ecosystems, people, crops, livestock, and the threat of pests and diseases. In theory, this analytical capacity holds great promise for our ability to better understand the ranges and combinations of socioeconomic and environmental conditions under which agriculture takes place and, therefore, to make more informed assessments of the potential impacts of specific policy, institutional and technological innovations. In practice, there are very few impact assessment applications, at the meso or macro scale, in which GIS has played a significant analytical role - rather than serving simply as a data mapping tool. This paper reviews some of the conceptual and practical difficulties in converting the promise of spatial analysis into a reality for the type of strategic, cross-country impact assessment that is (or should be) of high priority for the CGIAR. Many of these difficulties relate to differences in definitions, formats, resolution, and time periods among spatial data sources. But even more problematic is the fact that many critical datasets simply do not exist, or do not exist at resolutions that are sufficient or consistent. Three examples are: the spatial distribution of production, the spatial distribution of people, and the spatial distribution of soil and water resources. Ironically, these are precisely the core datasets we need to trace through the potential chain of impact from, for example, technology adoption to productivity change and hence to markets, food availability and incomes, and to natural resource stocks and flows. We describe work being undertaken by IFPRI to address several of these challenges. These include the development of a robust method to perform the crop- specific spatial allocation of production, and of improved population distribution maps that explicitly distinguish between urban and rural areas and populations. We also describe progress on the development of a compatible economic model (DREAM) designed to assess the potential benefits of technical change in a multi-region setting.Collection: CIMMYT Publications Collection
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Conference proceedings CIMMYT Knowledge Center: John Woolston Library

Lic. Jose Juan Caballero Flores

 

CIMMYT Publications Collection 338.91 WAT (Browse shelf) 1 Available V632147
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Abstract only

Assessing the past or potential impact of agricultural research and development at national and international scales is confounded by a great deal of real-world heterogeneity. One attraction of spatial analysis is its capacity to represent simultaneously the spatial variability of many key factors influencing agricultural production decisions and performance: climate, terrain, soils, water resources, and the physical accessibility of infrastructure and markets. In the same framework, these factors can be juxtaposed against the spatial distribution of ecosystems, people, crops, livestock, and the threat of pests and diseases. In theory, this analytical capacity holds great promise for our ability to better understand the ranges and combinations of socioeconomic and environmental conditions under which agriculture takes place and, therefore, to make more informed assessments of the potential impacts of specific policy, institutional and technological innovations. In practice, there are very few impact assessment applications, at the meso or macro scale, in which GIS has played a significant analytical role - rather than serving simply as a data mapping tool. This paper reviews some of the conceptual and practical difficulties in converting the promise of spatial analysis into a reality for the type of strategic, cross-country impact assessment that is (or should be) of high priority for the CGIAR. Many of these difficulties relate to differences in definitions, formats, resolution, and time periods among spatial data sources. But even more problematic is the fact that many critical datasets simply do not exist, or do not exist at resolutions that are sufficient or consistent. Three examples are: the spatial distribution of production, the spatial distribution of people, and the spatial distribution of soil and water resources. Ironically, these are precisely the core datasets we need to trace through the potential chain of impact from, for example, technology adoption to productivity change and hence to markets, food availability and incomes, and to natural resource stocks and flows. We describe work being undertaken by IFPRI to address several of these challenges. These include the development of a robust method to perform the crop- specific spatial allocation of production, and of improved population distribution maps that explicitly distinguish between urban and rural areas and populations. We also describe progress on the development of a compatible economic model (DREAM) designed to assess the potential benefits of technical change in a multi-region setting.

English

0310|R01CIMPU|AGRIS 0301|AL-Economics Program

Juan Carlos Mendieta

CIMMYT Publications Collection

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