Entries by Ian Randall


Grow Africa: An opportunity for collective action

I am flying home from the first Grow Africa Investment Forum, held at the impressive new African Union Conference Centre in Addis Ababa. Never before have I been in a room with so many powerful people – Jean Ping, African Union Chair; Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda; Jakaya Kikwete, President of Tanzania; Meles Zenawi, Prime Minister […]


The right political moment ~ reflections from WEF Africa.

I recently returned from the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) annual Africa meeting in Cape Town. I attended to support a high-level meeting focussed on scaling-up public-private initiatives that will help smallholders become more commercially successful. The meeting was attended by Presidents and Ministers from governments across Africa; heads of international agencies such USAID, IFAD and […]


Why Wasafiri?

Wasafiri is Swahili for travellers. Why did we choose this it for our name? During our inception as an organisation, several separate threads of thinking converged, leading us to Wasafiri as a name we were all happy to call ourselves. There is no path “Traveller, there is no path, paths are made by walking”. This […]


Mutual Accountability: Real relationships make aid effective

“Mutual accountability” is the fifth principle of aid effectiveness in the Paris Declaration. Importantly, it asks how governments, development agencies and civil society can hold each other accountable for delivering on their many promises. However, like the last child in a large family, it has received the least attention of any Paris principle. A recent […]

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Aligning donors behind Africa’s plan for agriculture

The context: With three-quarters of Africa’s poor living in rural areas and depending on agriculture for their livelihoods, governments recognise that boosting agricultural productivity offers a key strategy for alleviating poverty and hunger. In 2009, the African Union’s plan for agriculture (CAADP) reached critical momentum with 20 countries working on new robust plans for agriculture. […]


Eat my words

Recently my brain has been aching with the complexity of how to improve food security and rural incomes for the poor… 960 million people are hungry. 80 million more than last year. 75% of the world’s poor live in rural areas. They could produce more food, but they do not have access to the capital, […]