Sponsor Deadline
Posted: 10/31/2022

Grand Challenges: African Agriculture Climate Adaptation Research System Request for Proposals

Record high food prices have triggered a global crisis that will drive millions more into extreme poverty, magnifying hunger and malnutrition while threatening to erase hard-won gains in development. While some of the triggers for this crisis are modifiable using geopolitical diplomacy and justice, others, like climate change and increasing variability, need a more concerted, responsive, and sustained effort from scientists and policymakers.

Climate change and food security have an immutable link. Climate change has a cascading impact from agroecosystems to agricultural production, to the people and countries and ultimately consumers depending on reliable food production and availability. Africa is already and will continue to suffer the downstream effects of climate change, therefore, underlining a need to have climate adaptive food systems. In August 2020, a research priority setting exercise of 1,202 food security and nutrition (FSN) scientists on the African continent identified priority needs under climate adaptive food systems to be:

  • Highlight and enhance interventions that increase the resilience of agrifood systems to climate-related shocks (drought, pests, floods or pandemics such as COVID-19 etc). 
  • Provide accessible and acceptable options for scaling up climate smart agricultural practices e.g. reduce emissions from agriculture, prevent loss of biodiversity, prevent soil degradation and soil nutrient depletion etc. 
  • Investigate agricultural practices that can reverse the negative impacts of intensive agriculture while at the same time combat acute and chronic food insecurity. 

Responding to existing food security challenges in the face of climate change will require increasing productivity both to meet consumption demands and to limit further agricultural land expansion into natural ecosystems. An adaptation modelling scenario has shown that a 25% increase in crop yields would almost completely offset the impact of climate change on child malnutrition. However, we must also increase production reliability (not just the average) as inter-annual climate variability and shocks increases risk for small scale producers. The approaches needed to address climate change must consider constraints faced by African small scale producers, including limited access to irrigation and financing, nutrient-depleted soils, and often poor access to markets and added-value food systems. 

Deadline: Jan. 15, 2023

Amount Description

Seed projects (proof of concept projects) – studies that have a new idea that needs to be validated and data collected to support or confirm the idea - USD $100,000.

Transition to scale projects – projects that have proved their concept works and need to validate in a controlled environment as they seek to develop the product or process and prepare it for scaling - USD $200,000.

Funding Type