ILSSI has provided evidence on the high potential of small scale irrigation to contribute to meeting food demands, addressing nutritional security, and increasing incomes.
The challenge now is to expand the use of irrigation by smallholders that are equitable, and economically and environmentally sustainable.
ILSSI's research through 2023 focuses on generating evidence for effective scaling and inclusive access to small scale irrigation. With an emphasis on the role of small scale irrigation in the context of improving social and ecological resilience.
The Innovation Lab for Small Scale Irrigation hosted two Net-Map Workshops on 8 and 9 October, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The workshops brought together a cross-section of key stakeholders involved in the small scale irrigation sector The workshops help to map out influence in a network: what actors are involved in the diffusion of SSI technologies, how these actors are linked, and their level of influence on the network. The tool allows participants to explore how things are actually done, not how they should be according to policy.
ILSSI held training in Ghana from 5-10 August on the Integrated Decision Support System, a set of integrated models to enable improved environmental and economic analysis, monitoring and planning, particularly as related to agricultural water management and irrigation development. The training was hosted by the CSIR’s Water Research Institute in Accra, while ILSSI provided the trainers from Texas A & M University. Over 50 participants from universities, public institutions, and research institutions in Ghana participated, including some from USAID supported projects.
On July 15th, 2019 Dr. Seifu Tilahun the Scientific Director and Associate Professor of Hydrology at the Bahir Dar Institute of Technology in Ethiopia, presented to over 30 faculty and staff within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University. His lecture, Irrigation and agriculture development in Africa: Impact on water quality and ecosystem health in the Ethiopian highlands, focused on a study being done in collaboration with The Innovation Lab for Small Scale Irrigation.
Mali is on the front-line of climate change, with pervasive food insecurity and other risks. The people of Mali rely heavily on rainfed agriculture, exposing them to climate-related shocks. Irrigated agriculture is one high potential pathway to increase resilience and improve access to food. ILSSI supported research identifies areas in Mali with high potential for scaling solar water pumps for developing irrigation. Up to 69% of Mali’s agricultural lands - 4.44 million hectares (Mha) - are suitable for solar irrigation development. Read more on the Suitability for farmer-led solar irrigation development in Mali.