Document Type


Journal/Book Title

Global Livestock Collaborative Research Support Program


University of California at Davis

Publication Date



Recently there has been increased recognition that authentic community participation and creating strong inter-institutional partnerships are both important in the process of capacity building, generating innovation, and sustaining development achievements in rural Africa. Here we summarize a process of community participation and formation of institutional partnerships in support of pastoral risk-management interventions over the past seven years on the Borana Plateau. Community involvement has been stimulated using Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) methods. This has resulted in the proliferation of pastoral collective-action groups that have diversified livelihoods, engaged markets, and improved incomes. Implementing and sustaining positive change, however, has also been related to building a dynamic network of 46 like- minded partners across Ethiopia and northern Kenya. These partners include community based organizations, women’s groups, policy makers, educators, researchers, private sector firms, various GO and NGO development agents, and others. It is argued that widespread impact across such a large area could not have been achieved without the assistance of many partners that contribute complimentary resources and expertise to plug gaps that can otherwise impede progress. Challenges and opportunities in creating and maintaining partner networks in support of such rural development are discussed.