Fertilizer Research and Responsible Implementation
Fertilizer Research and Responsible Implementation (FERARI) is a public-private program in Ghana that integrates an on-the-ground implementation program to develop the fertilizer value chain with transdisciplinary research by PhDs and postdoctoral researchers, supervised by internationally renowned universities, and to build the research capacity at the involved institutions.
The overall objective of the program is to develop the evidence base for the need of a systematic approach to support widespread adoption of balanced fertilizers by farmers in the less developed markets of sub-Saharan African countries, specifically Ghana, as a means to improve their food and nutrition security.
FERARI activities run from 2019-2024 and are co-funded by OCP, University Mohammed VI Polytechnique (UM6P), IFDC, and other involved institutions.
- Develop on-the-ground experience in pre-competitive activities to create appropriate market conditions for balanced fertilizers and their widespread adoption by farmers.
- Convert tacit knowledge into formal knowledge to allow more effective science-based up- and out-scaling of practical approaches.
- Train highly qualified PhDs and postdoctoral researchers to enter the international research and implementation market after graduation.
- Strengthen the transdisciplinary scientific capabilities of involved institutions.
An implementation component will be executed to identify the location-specific need for balanced fertilization
and to know their impact on crop responses by co-experimentation with farmers demonstrating the benefits. Actors along the value chain will be involved in the development of the fertilizer chain to ensure access by farmers to the fertilizers. And finally, a platform of multiple relevant stakeholders will be geared up to discuss and align the actions of stakeholders in the fertilizer and food value chain for smooth operations.
The program contains a transdisciplinary research component that will interact with the implementation program. PhDs and postdoctoral researchers will perform in-depth studies to understand the agro-technical improvement, effectiveness of the (novel) fertilizers, the economic viability of the system, and the processes needed to align multiple stakeholders to act in an orchestrated manner.
Linkages and Partnerships
This program will build strong linkages with on-going programs by the Ghanaian government, including the “Planting for Food and Jobs” program and the Fertilizer Expansion Program. It will also interact with on-going programs of involved parties to enhance its impact and accelerate on-going activities in Ghana that stimulate sustainable agricultural intensification.
The PhDs and postdoctoral researchers will be trained in a transdisciplinary manner, which will allow them to think outside their own disciplinary boxes, to ease their interaction with scientists from other disciplines, and to develop a sense for interaction with stakeholders in the field to tune their research insights to practical applicability.
The research will be co-supervised by staff from the involved universities and institutions, including IFDC, UM6P, Wageningen University (WUR), University of Liège (ULiège), Universities and research institutes in Ghana, including University of Ghana (UG), Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), and the University for Development Studies (UDS).
FERARI is looking for 5 candidates for a Sandwich PhD program on four different disciplinary areas that will intensively interact to conduct the outlined research in direct collaboration with on-the-ground implementation activities. There is a strong preference for, and priority given to candidates from Ghana and Morocco to apply.
Dr. Prem Bindraban (pbindraban(at)ifdc.org)
No. 113A Mbabane Avenue,
East Legon Residential Area
PMB CT 284 Cantonments, Accra
+233 (0) 560 027 917/8