To increase resilience, we must measure it.
April 6, 2016
By better understanding risks we can develop more resilient systems. As much as possible, this should be practical and not require lengthy analysis or costly processes so that we can mainstream its use. These are several aspects of resilience that COSA and its partners will address as they launch a new work stream that will bring together scientists, development practitioners, NGOs, the private sector, and monitoring and evaluation experts.
Thanks to the generous support of the Ford Foundation, COSA is launching a concerted effort to establish practical indicators to measure the resilience of farmers and their communities to the major risks posed by global climate change, volatile market prices, social conditions, and poor access to basic services. Led by Dr. Elena Serfilippi and Dr. Gayatri Ramnath, the initiative will apply a multi-stakeholder approach to selecting and defining a practical set of resilience metrics and indicators.
The work is predicated on our understanding that farmer resilience changes over time and, especially for smallholder farmers, can be a major factor in whether they can avoid poverty and ensure their livelihoods. This interest is, of course shared by many companies and by development agencies that will partner to create a resilience learning community focused on the design and testing of these key metrics including: Lutheran World Relief, Sustainable Food Lab, USAID, CCAFS, Root Capital, and Rainforest Alliance.