SERA Annual Report: Year 1

The Tanzania SERA Project assists both the Government of the Republic of Tanzania (GoT) and the private sector to enable a broad‐based, sustainable transformation of the agricultural sector through policy reform. The vision for this project is twofold: to improve the policy and regulatory environment for agriculture growth and to build a group of public sector institutions, advocacy organizations, and individuals capable of performing rigorous policy analysis and advocating for policy reform. The SERA Project is part of USAID’s Tanzania Feed the Future (FtF) Initiative and works closely with other implementing partners and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

There are three major components to the SERA Project:

  1. Policy Research and Reform to improve agricultural policies to enhance food security and increase agricultural productivity in Tanzania with focus on policies affecting investments in SAGCOT region.
  2. Individual and Institutional Capacity Building to build local institutional and individual capacity to do agricultural policy research to support policy and regulatory reform.
  3. Advocacy and Communications to strengthen advocacy and communications for policy reforms and build alliances with partners to work toward these objectives.

Improving agricultural policies will be accomplished by working with the GoT and other stakeholders to identify important policy constraints to growth in the agricultural sector and helping to alleviate these constraints through policy reform. The SERA Project will conduct and commission evidence‐based policy research to inform the GoT and other stakeholders of the impacts of existing policies and the potential benefits of improved policies. In addition, the SERA Project will develop the capacity of individuals and organizations to engage in policy analysis and advocate for policy change. At the conclusion of the project, we expect USAID will leave behind an improved policy environment and a legacy of enabling the GoT and other stakeholders to initiate, develop, and utilize evidence‐based research in policy decisions and implementation. The project will also empower local research and private sector advocacy groups to more effectively use analysis and strategic communications to lobby for change, to build national partnerships that create consensus around agriculture policy, and to monitor the impacts of policy. The SERA Project will focus its activities around priorities identified in collaboration with the Southern Agriculture Growth Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT) initiative.

The USAID contract for the SERA Project was awarded in April 2011 with a start date of May 1, 2011. Activities started when the team attended the USAID FtF Implementing Partners Meeting in Kilombero, Tanzania from May 23‐27, 2011. The first work planning meeting was held on June 27, 2011 and the project began operations with limited staff in July 2011. The period from May to September 2011 was designated as Year 0.5 and the first full year work plan covered the period from October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2012 to coincide with USAID’s fiscal year. The project began its second year activities on October 1, 2012, and this Annual Report is for Year 1 covering the period October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2012 and also serves as the Q4 report of Year 1.

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