Could you introduce yourself and your Organization to the APF network members in Ethiopia?
I am Samson Eshetu (PhD) currently working for Capacity Development for Agricultural Innovation Systems (CDAIS) project in Ethiopia as a Lead National Innovation Facilitator. The Capacity Development for Agricultural Innovation System (CDAIS) project, which has started operation in Ethiopia in May 2016, is an initiative of Agrinatura (association of European research and universities), represented by ICRA and FAO in eight developing countries of the world which is designed to try out a new model of development framed by the innovation systems perspective. The project is financed by the European Union and is aimed at strengthening the functional capacities of actors involved in agricultural innovation systems to make things happen in complex and unpredictable situations.
Could you please share the big achievement of yours?
I can mention quite many big achievements in my professional career including my recent PhD degree on Agricultural Extension which my research focuses on Agricultural Innovation Systems (AIS). However, one big achievement which I would like to share with you is the key and leading role I played for the establishment of the Ethiopian Society of Rural Development and Agricultural Extension (ESRDAE) in 2010. The reason why I am mentioning as a big achievement is that many people had tried before and this came to a reality during my leadership. In fact, these all happened due to the big technical and financial support I got from colleagues and leadership at Haramaya University, Sasakawa Africa Fund for Extension Education (SAFE), and many development partners and dedicated agricultural extension professionals in the country.
How/what do you contribute to the APF Ethiopia network?
Share my experience, contribute for joint learning and co-generation of knowledge.
What would you like to share with/request from the APF network members in Ethiopia?
I want to share with you about the 4 + 1 functional capacity which is key dimension of capacity development which help us to make networks, platforms and forums perform effectively. These capacities are
i) capacity to navigate complexity,
ii) capacity to collaborate,
iii) capacity to reflect and learn,
iv) capacity to engage in strategic and political processes.
The four capacities are the core of an overarching capacity to adapt and respond in order to realize the potential of innovation.
What can you say about AgriProFocus Ethiopia?
AgriProFocus Ethiopia network is one of the few networks which is well established in terms of diverse, committed and active members. The network is well facilitated by skilled communication specialists and so interactive. An online and the face-to-face learning avenue provide an opportunity for members to share, reflect, learn, and co-generation of knowledge. This is a critical challenge in most of the networks, platforms and forums operating in this country. Hence, I suggest to organize an event for few leaders of networks, platforms and forums in this country for the purposes of sharing your practical experience on managing networks and how to make it functional.