25 Items

Analysis & Opinions - The Conversation

Local Start-ups Hold the Key to Transforming Africa's Seed Industry

| September 2, 2015

"The seed industry in sub-Saharan Africa is informal in nature, with approximately 80% of farmers saving and replanting seeds from year to year. This gives them security of access. But improved varieties — including high-yielding and hybrid crops — will increase productivity and income. To get these seeds into the hands of farmers, a better marketing and distribution system is needed. Local small and medium-sized seed enterprises have a comparative advantage in reaching this underserved market due to their size and market reach."

Analysis & Opinions - Global Food For Thought

Biotechnology and Africa's Strategic Interests

| December 3, 2012

"Biotechnology offers Africa a wider range of economic opportunities than the Green Revolution did. It is already being used to improve food production and establish or revive cotton production. Its economic impact is therefore likely to go well beyond the farm sector to include industrial development."

A view of one of the displaced camp in Mogadishu, Somalia, Sep. 14, 2011. A massive aid operation is currently underway to help millions of Somalis affected by the fighting and a famine caused by severe drought.

AP Photo

Analysis & Opinions - The Daily Nation

Africa Must Wake Up to the Reality That Hunger is Now a National Security Issue

| August 14, 2012

"The tools available to India in the 1960s are not sufficient to address the challenges that African agriculture now faces. These include a rapidly-growing population, productivity loss due to ecological disruption, environmental decay, droughts, climate change, and conflict. Biotechnology offers additional tools that can help Africa address some of these challenges. It is another moment that calls for the kind of political courage that led to the adoption of the Green Revolution."

Dec. 16, 2011: an Indian laborer sits on bales of cotton at a cotton mill in Dhrangadhra, India. The Indian parliament was informed earlier that week that about 90 percent of India's cotton crop is Bt. The transgenic seeds have increased the yield.

AP Photo

Journal Article - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

Economic Impacts and Impact Dynamics of Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) Cotton in India

    Authors:
  • Jonas Kathage
  • Matin Qaim
| July 2012

Despite widespread adoption of genetically modified crops in many countries, heated controversies about their advantages and disadvantages continue. Especially for developing countries, there are concerns that genetically modified crops fail to benefit smallholder farmers and contribute to social and economic hardship. Many economic studies contradict this view, but most of them look at short-term impacts only, so that uncertainty about longer-term effects prevails. The authors address this shortcoming by analyzing economic impacts and impact dynamics of Bt cotton in India.

Magazine Article - Reuters Magazine

Running Al Qaeda

| June 2012

"Getting second-rung leadership right is important for any enterprise, and for al Qaeda that meant assuring the brand and building network capacity for terror. Bin Laden was careful about deciding who would be anointed with two powerful gifts—his blessing of leadership, and formal affiliation of groups to al Qaeda central (a term he heard used by the media and, amazingly, appropriated)."

Discussion Paper - Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, Belfer Center

WikiLeaks 2010: A Glimpse of the Future?

    Author:
  • Tim Maurer
| August 2011

The recent publications on WikiLeaks reveal a story about money, fame, sex, underground hackers, and betrayal. But it also involves fundamental questions regarding cyber-security and foreign policy. This paper argues WikiLeaks is only the symptom of a new, larger problem which is the result of technological advances that allow a large quantity of data to be 'stolen' at low or no cost by one or more individuals and to be potentially made public and to go 'viral', spreading exponentially online.

A Chery Riich M1 is seen at an auto show in Shanghai, China, 26 Apr. 2009. Leading private Chinese automaker Chery will set up a joint venture with the China-Africa Development Fund to further explore the car market in Africa.

AP Photo

Analysis & Opinions - CNN

Asian Interest Means Africa Needs New Economic Vision

| August 31, 2011

"The surge in interest in Africa by China and India requires a different approach that does not view the continent as a helpless victim of foreign influence. To that end African countries are seeking to replace classical foreign policy that focuses on access to markets in return for raw materials with a new vision of economic diplomacy."

Book Chapter

Entrepreneurship

| January 2011

The creation of agricultural enterprises represents one of the most effective ways to stimulate rural development. This chapter will review the efficacy of the policy tools used to promote agricultural enterprises, with a particular focus on the positive, transformative role that can be played by the private sector. Inspired by such examples, this chapter will end by exploring ways in which African countries, subregional, and regional bodies can create incentives that stimulate entrepreneurship in the agricultural sector. The chapter will take into account new tools such as information and communication technologies and the extent to which they can be harnessed to promote entrepreneurship.

- Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Belfer Center Newsletter Summer 2010

| Summer 2010

The Summer 2010 issue of the Belfer Center newsletter features recent and upcoming activities, research, and analysis by members of the Center community on critical global issues. This issue highlights the Belfer Center's involvement with the Nuclear Security Summit, which was organized by Center alumni Gary Samore and Laura Holgate.