Description of the subject. We present a literature overview of innovation platform practices in Africa, combined with case studies of sub-national platforms established in Senegal and Burkina Faso. Objectives. The main objective was to understand how the facilitation process of innovation platforms can become more effective. Two specific objectives were to study RAMSES II innovation platform cases in Senegal and Burkina Faso where we observed and reflect on the facilitation of agroforestry innovation platforms. A final objective was to position the case results in a literature overview of IP experiences in Africa. Method. Information on innovation platforms was collected by combining an analysis of RAMSES II agroforestry innovation platform cases and an innovation platform literature review. Results. The study illustrates how the organizational position of the facilitating research agents contributed to shaping platform agendas, functions, and outcomes. This process hinges on the deployment of legitimacy claims, which appeal to technical expertise and scientific narratives, in this case on agroforestry. Institutional embeddedness is shown to be a critical aspect of agency in innovation platform multi-actor processes, contributing to framing local understandings of agroforestry and to channel collective efforts. Conclusions. The institutional identity of facilitating research agents and their relationship to members of a platform requires a more open and process oriented role. Coordination and facilitation roles can also be taken up by other members of the platform. This enhances the platform’s ability to ground their agendas into local needs and priorities. It also enhances sustainability, as active membership during the project period prepares platform members to continue after project closure.
|Translated title of the contribution||First experiences to ground agroforestry Innovation Platforms into their local institutional context|
|Journal||Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment|
|Issue number||Special issue|
|Publication status||Published - 2023|