Everywhere, young people want to leave the land to find economic opportunities. The average age of farmers is rising globally, and in richer countries that average is not much different than the average age for retirement. Rural areas often suffer from poorer services and infrastructure of all kinds—reliable access to electricity and the Internet, and high-quality education and health services.
This places many developing countries, and especially many African countries, in a bind. With populations that are young and growing, they need robust agricultural sectors to feed their people, reduce poverty, and provide the income and productivity to generate the kind of structural transformation that will benefit urban areas. History has shown that as farmers become more productive, economies become more competitive and create skilled jobs outside of agriculture. But this process is not inevitable—and it will not happen if young people abandon farming.
This evidence synthesis looks at whether skills training can help young people enter and stay in the agricultural sector, not only as farmers, but in a range of businesses that can support a thriving food economy.
The full details of the the protocol for this evidence synthesis are available on the OSF open platform run by the Center for Open Science.
Ceres 2030 is a partnership between Cornell IP-CALS, the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), and the International Institute of Sustainable Development (IISD)