The Applied Research and Innovation Systems in Agriculture (ARISA) project is one of the suite of programs in AIP-Rural. ARISA seeks to strengthen farmer-relevant innovation at the research and business interface by increasing the capacity and incentives for public research institutes and universities to collaborate with small, medium and large agribusinesses to adapt existing innovations for agriculture in eastern Indonesia. The goal of the program is to increase farm incomes for smallholder farmer households in eastern Indonesia through the adaptation and dissemination of innovation.
Why we work in this sector
Despite rapid growth in recent years in Indonesia, reducing poverty remains a challenge. As 63% of Indonesia’s poor live in rural areas, a more profitable agricultural sector will significantly assist in reducing poverty rates. For agriculture to deliver sustained impact on income in a growing and increasingly open Indonesian economy, it will need to become more competitive. To be able to achieve this, the agriculture sector will need to innovate. ARISA focuses on research and innovation in agriculture.
One of the key indicators used by the World Economic Forum to assess national competitiveness is innovation. ARISA looks at how to stimulate productivity and increase poor farmers’ access to markets by partnering with the private sector to scale-up competitive enhancing innovations in agriculture. The generation of innovative agricultural ideas in Indonesia is not lacking, but there is a problem commercialising these ideas. The reason for this is: (1) an absence of incentives for commercialising research; (2) a lack of match-making capability between Research Institutes and industry; and (3) relatively few examples, models or mechanisms for effective public-private collaboration.
Under DFAT’s AIP-Rural program and in partnership with Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), ARISA addresses these constraints by testing new ways to stimulate this collaboration between industry and research institutes in applying new or adapted technology, processes and/or products that will improve the competitiveness of smallholder farmers. ARISA focuses on strengthening linkages between research institutions and the private sector to unlock the potential of domestic research capacity to commercially apply agricultural innovations that provide direct benefits to Indonesian farmers.
ARISA identifies and support a small number of practicable and commercially viable innovations that have already been developed in other parts of Indonesia or in other countries, but which have not yet been taken up to any significant extent in eastern Indonesia. It will strengthen these innovations with applied and adaptive research using a M4P approach. ARISA only focuses on innovations that already exist. It will not conduct research on the development of new technologies.
ARISA’s focus on the commercial application of innovations at scale means that it must work with and through effective channels of dissemination and commercialisation. In practice which means research organisations collaborating with the private sector. It is this private sector-research organisation collaboration which is the fundamental innovation being tested and promoted by ARISA. The program also undertakes research on the facilitation process and its efficacy to deliver outcomes that impact on farmer incomes.
ARISA’s principal delivery strategy is to provide grants to research institutions and private sector collaborations that scale-up existing or near-commercially ready innovations in areas relevant to smallholder farmer needs in eastern Indonesia.
The target beneficiaries
ARISA’s overarching goal is consistent with those of all other AIP-Rural programs: to increase farm incomes for smallholder farmer households in eastern Indonesia. In the case of ARISA this is being achieved through the adaptation and dissemination of innovations, leading to lifting the income of 10,000 smallholder farmer households in the five target provinces in eastern Indonesia.