Policy engagement in the agriculture sector is expected to improve as the Civil Society Agriculture Network – CISANET and MwAPATA Institute have signed an agreement to work together.
As the two institutions are intending to maximize the use of agriculture related research in Malawi, the needs for farmers and other stakeholders are likely to be addressed using empirical evidence.
Upon signing a Memorandum of Understanding – MOU on Wednesday morning in Lilongwe, MwAPATA Acting Executive Director William Chadza, pointed out that working as a policy thinktank requires them to provide evidence-based guidance on how to transform the sector.
Chadza believes the established working relations with CISANET will further give them a wider reach to concerned stakeholders as they continue working.
“We believe that signing an MOU with CISANET will be important because we will be providing them with empirical evidence to use in advocacy work which they use in terms of engaging and influencing various decisions in the agriculture sector.
“We also hope that our collaboration with them will enrich our research agenda particularly on defining demand driven research with accordance to what is happening on the ground,” Chadza added.
Commenting on her part, National Director for CISANET, Pamela Kuwali, stressed that the MOU will be important in aspects of policy dialogue since they will be using evidence.
“One of our critical areas is to ensure that whatever we are bringing on table especially when we are engaging for policy change, we want to ensure that we are backing it with evidence,” highlighted Kuwali.
She further added that the relationship will be symbiotic since CISANET will benefit from MwAPATA’s research work and MwAPATA in turn will be fed with information collected from the grassroots.
There is also hope that documents produced by the research thinktank will be better popularized in the country as well as making it relevant to policy change advanced by the government.