in the CGIAR
Nowadays that participatory approaches to research are receiving a revived interest, it is useful to take a closer look at the state of the art of participatory research in the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). This paper provides a historical overview of participatory research (PR) in CGIAR, points out deficiencies within the organization regarding participatory research, and offers suggestions as to how participatory approaches can be integrated into the system to utilize their potential more effectively.
Participatory research is not new to the CGIAR system. Its history dates back to the 1980s when first attempts were made to come into closer contact with farmers. The limitations of a pure commodity orientation, seen quite early by some, led to the development of farming systems research approaches. Although this brought researchers and farmers closer, the question of whether farmers had an active enough participation soon came up. This led to the development of the first approaches to do research and experimentation with farmers.