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By definition WATER is a clue topic! Today more than in the past. Vandana Shiva many times wrote that the next wars will be fought for water and not for oil.
The topic is so relevant that I would like to publish for this article something more detailed and peculiar than my own thoughts. That’s why I prefer to report this short extract from “Water and the Rural Poor: Interventions for improving Livelihoods in Sub-Saharan Africa“:
Insecure access to water for consumption and productive uses is a major constraint on poverty reduction in rural areas of sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). For millions of smallholder farmers, fishers and herders in SSA, water is one of the most important production assets, and securing access to and control and management of water is key to enhancing their livelihoods. The potential exists for well-targeted, local interventions in water that contribute to rapid improvement in the livelihoods of the rural poor in SSA and help attain the Millennium Development Goal of eradicating extreme poverty and hunger. It discusses conditions for success and proposes water-based, context-specific, and livelihood-centered approaches to poverty reduction in rural areas.
Given the predominance of rural poverty in SSA, and given that agriculture will remain the main source of livelihood, poverty reduction strategies need to focus on improving productivity in this sector. This report focuses on agricultural water because:
(i) it plays a central role in agriculture-based rural livelihoods;
(ii) adequate availability and reliable access to water is frequently a constraint on production; and
(iii) water provides a focal point around which other interventions can be organized.
Examples of successful water projects in SSA exist, and there are important opportunities for new investments in water. Their success will depend on the development of new models of interventions, centered on enhancing the diversity of livelihood conditions of rural populations. A large part of the success of future investments in water control will depend on a more comprehensive analysis of dynamic opportunities and needs, which are closely linked to the shifting biophysical and socio-economic contexts.
However, there is no “one size fits all” approach for improving livelihoods. Different contexts and needs will require different types of investments, in which market or household food security, prevailing agroclimatic conditions and associated farming systems, and the overall socio-economic and institutional environment will guide the choice from a non-prescriptive menu of appropriate interventions at different scales.
Reports will be available soon in this blog as well as on my twitter account.
This is a very important occasion to meet for the first time with such a large group of Asian radio broadcasters who are actually expanding and developing many activities in the field of rural and community radio.
We met Tim Unwin, yesterday morning at FAO. Many interesting points on the table while talking about ICT4D and several interesting answers to the questions of the large number of people listening to his intervention.
Just few thoughts I collected:
“the web was considered at the beginning like a SOCIAL movement rather than a technological event”
“the power of LISTENING TO people”
“we consider fundamental to help people find THEIR solutions to their problems”
I keep collecting these kind of thoughts because I find extremely important to dig into the huge amount of discussion on the Web, the technology, the usability of tools, the management of knowledge, and other related topics. It is my attempt to let emerge the basics of these disciplines, that I believe to be simpler than we can think.
Comparing these notes with others collected during similar events, I think I’ll be able to create a sort of collection of principles to get inspiration from.
In the meanwhile, thinking about the ICT4D conference in December 2010 in London, I hope we can set up a proposal to present the activity on Rural radio, that is the kind of “ICT for development” we are specifically promoting around the world.