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Partnership for Impact

Mozambique, Tete province, Pacassa village
Boy carrying water in Pacassa village, Mozambique. Photo credit: ILRI/Mann.


The CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Systems is comprised of eight (8) core CGIAR partners and is led by the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA).  The CGIAR is a global partnership that unites organizations engaged in research for sustainable development with the funders of this work. The funders include developing and industrialized country governments, foundations, and international and regional organizations. 

Core CGIAR Program Partners

These are:


  • International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) was established in 1977. ICARDA’s founding mandate to promote agricultural development in the dry areas of developing countries remains highly relevant today.​
  • International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) is a non-profit, non-political organization that conducts agricultural research for development in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.
  • World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) envisions a rural transformation in the developing world as smallholder households strategically increase their use of trees in agricultural landscapes to improve their food security, nutrition, income, health, shelter, social cohesion, energy resources and environmental sustainability. 
  • International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) works at the crossroads of livestock and poverty, bringing high-quality science and capacity building to bear on poverty reduction and sustainable development. ILRI works in Africa, South and Southeast Asia, and China.
  • International Water Management Institute (IWMI) is a non-profit, scientific research organization focusing on the sustainable use of water and land resources in developing countries. It is headquartered in Colombo, Sri Lanka, with regional offices across Asia and Africa.
  • Bioversity International is a global research-for-development organization. Its vision is that agricultural biodiversity nourishes people and sustains the planet.
  • International Potato Center (CIP) was founded in 1971 as a root and tuber research-for-development institution delivering sustainable solutions to the pressing world problems of hunger, poverty and the degradation of natural resources.
  • International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) was formally established in 1967 and began its research in 1969.  CIAT envisions reducing hunger and poverty and improving human nutrition in the tropics through research aimed at increasing the eco-efficiency of agriculture. 

Other partners

Partnerships are fundamental to the work of our program. In addition to the 8 core partner CGIAR centers that have come together to form the program, the program  relies on a diverse array of local, regional, and global partnerships to mainstream integrated agricultural systems research and ensure program research outputs are effectively used by next and end users.


These partners are critical to scaling out best practices and technologies identified through the research and, therefore, to making an impact. We work with our partners to set research priorities and select action sites, and involve them in our program governance. The program has adopted a two-pronged partnership approach:

  • Firstly, we establish international partnerships across target regions, countries, and agro-ecosystems to facilitate learning and share knowledge.
  • Secondly, we strengthen links between organizations and networks locally, nationally, and regionally to enhance technology transfer and inform the development of strategies to scale-out and scale-up proven research-in-development interventions.

How we work with partners

We bring partners together in ‘innovation platforms’ to get an understanding of what works best and where, and to explore how to boost productivity, manage natural resources, improve value chains, and adapt to climate change. Our partnerships combine scientific research results with the skills and capacities of national agricultural research systems, advanced research institutes, non-governmental and civil society organizations, the private sector, and other actors to test and develop practical innovative solutions for dryland farming communities.

Strategic partnerships with other CGIAR Research Programs

In addition,the CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Systems coordinates its activities and engages strategically with other CGIAR Research Programs (such as CCAFS, WLE, Wheat, Dryland Cereals, Grain and Legumes, Humidtropics, etc.) to ensure joint or shared research outputs are made available to various implementing partners and research users, who are engaged in systems research activities, policy making, on-farm adaptive trials, technology testing and dissemination, development and application of climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies, and so forth.

Partnership Building Achievements

Dryland Systems partners have individually or jointly made progress in adopting the systems approach and this experience is being shared across the target regions. Partners are international and local agricultural institutions.

Partner Organization Name Type Flagship
Centre Regional Agrhymet Research Institute West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Universiity of Wisconsin, Madison Academia West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Animal Research Institute NARES West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
World Vision NGOs West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Oxfam Novib NGOs West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
AMEDD NGOs West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Institut d'Economie Rurale (IER) West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Sahel Eco NGOs West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Reseau MARP NGOs West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Care International au Niger NGOs West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Institut de l'Environnement et Recherches Agricoles (INERA) NARES West African Sahel and Dry Savannas
Institut National de Recherche Agronomique du Niger (INRAN) West African Sahel and Dry Savannas