The Science Agenda will articulate the science and technology that African agriculture needs to prioritize in order to achieve its agricultural development targets; the complementary actions needed for the science and technology to be sufficiently harnessed; and the type and scale of investments required. 

The development of an agriculture science agenda for Africa, is one of the five work streams of the Dublin Process—an initiative of African stakeholders in agricultural research and development, the CGIAR consortium and development partners aimed at improving alignment of the CGIAR to the CAADP agenda. It was prompted by the realisation that the recently formulated CGIAR research programmes could be focused – at least in Africa – to better respond to the agricultural research for development needs articulated in country and regional agriculture and food security investment plans—key milestones of the CAADP process.  In order to achieve agricultural transformation on the continent the CAADP process and associated institutions could better utilize CGIAR capacity in formulating and implementing their agricultural research for development programmes. The Dublin Process set out to remedy these deficiencies.    

The other four work streams include:

  1. Stocktaking and Mapping of planned and on-going agricultural research and development activities;
  2. Organisation of regional agricultural productivity workshops on how the CGIAR capacity can be better harnessed to advance the development of CAADP country investment programmes;
  3. Establishing a Memorandum of Understanding between the AUC and the CGIAR Consortium, which was signed in January, 2013; and
  4. Development of agricultural technology innovation platforms proposed by the G8 New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition.

The Dublin Process was launched during the first Dublin meeting (Dublin I) in June/July 2011.  Its steering committee mandated FARA to lead two of the work streams; namely the development of the Science Agenda and the organisation of regional productivity workshops.

The second meeting (Dublin II) was held in September 2012 to deepen buy-in and ownership of the Dublin Process, to review progress with regard to implementation of the work streams and to define the actions needed to take  the process forward..

One of the recommendations of the Dublin II meeting is the organisation by FARA of a technical workshop to further develop and validate the methodology for developing the Science Agenda.  

In implementing this recommendation, FARA constituted a Science Agenda Technical Advisory Group (TAG) and charged the TAG with refining and validating the process and methodology for developing the Science Agenda.  The TAG comprised representatives from FARA, SROs, CGIAR consortium, AUC, NEPAD Planning and Coordination Agency, the World Bank and experts with experience in formulating similar shared science agendas and collaborative research in Africa.