Impact assessment is important to agricultural research. It quantifies benefits from both proposed and past research, and allows comparisons of the cost effectiveness of different research investments as a basis for priority setting. Though there are important economies of scale in the global and regional level research done by the international centres of the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), this research covers only one small sector in the sequence of research and development reaching down into farmers' fields. CGIAR impact thus depends on the rest of the research and development (R&D) sequence operating effectively, something largely beyond its control. In deciding a strategy for impact assessment, the international centres need to resolve two dilemmas: first, how much impact assessment they should do, for their own programme planning and monitoring, and to satisfy their stakeholder constituencies; and secondly, how sophisticated this assessment should be. Impact measurement is itself research and, like all research, is very much concerned with how much is gained from the extra costs of collecting further information.
Centros agrícolas internacionales