Improving lives through
sustainable bioinnovations

Bio-Innovate Program is supporting nine regional and multidisciplinary projects in eastern Africa

Bio-Innovate Program is supporting nine regional and multidisciplinary projects in eastern Africa

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The Bio-resources Innovations Network for Eastern Africa Development (Bio-Innovate) Program is a newly established multidisciplinary competitive funding mechanism, for biosciences and product oriented innovation activities in eastern Africa, through the bioresources innovation fund, supporting applications for regional, multi-disciplinary innovation projects in Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.

The Bio-Innovate niche is characterized by a focus on the applications of bio-resource innovations, to support sustainable growth and transformation of the agricultural and environmental sub-sectors, from primary production to value addition, while enhancing adaptability to climatic change and strengthening innovation policy. Building on previous investments and regional initiatives, the Program is focusing on delivering new products through bioscience innovation systems involving multiple actors, including scientists, private sector, Non Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) and other development actors.

A central objective of the Bio-Innovate Program is to build functional innovation consortia able to take bioscience Research for Development (R4D) and innovations to the market. The Bio-Innovate Program is being implemented under four Thematic Areas and through nine regional, multi-disciplinary innovation and policy projects selected through the Program’s Competitive Grant Scheme (CGS).

These innovation and policy project consortia are comprised of a range of value chain actors critical to span the process from science to production and markets. Involvement of market actors and other practitioners in the innovation project consortia is crucial in order to ensure that products, knowledge and new technologies emanating from the Bio-Innovate Program reach the market and specified end users. In its first three-year phase call for proposals on “Adapting to Climate Change in Agriculture and the Environment in Eastern Africa”, the Bio-Innovate Program is supporting five innovation projects working to improve the productivity of sorghum, millet, cassava, sweet potato, potato and bean farmers; to help smallholder farmers adapt to climate change (thematic area 1); to improve the processing of wastes in the production of sisal and coffee; and to better treat waste water generated in leather processing and slaughterhouse operations (thematic area 2). In the second call for proposals on “Innovation Incubation and Promotion of Targeted Value Chains and Bio-resources Innovation Policy and Sustainability Analysis in Eastern Africa”, The Bio-Innovate Program is supporting four innovation incubation and policy projects.

The Bio-Innovate projects from the second call will help build agricultural and environmental innovation incubation and targeted value chains in the region and a supportive policy environment for bioresources innovations. We are pleased to report that the Bio-Innovate Program Secretariat has successfully set-up and implemented the Program’s Competitive Grant Scheme. Two round calls for concept notes followed by full proposals development, review, selection and approval for funding have been made for all the four thematic areas of the Program. Nine regional, interdisciplinary innovation and policy projects were selected and approved for funding with a total fund of SEK 69.8M (USD 9.3M) over three years period through the Program’s competitive bidding process involving more than 50 implementing institutions and 100 innovation and policy consortium teams from universities, national, regional and international research organizations, national councils for Science and Technology, private sectors/ industries and development organizations from within Bio-Innovate participating countries and outside the region.

For more details contact Bio-Innovate Secretariat: Dr. Seyoum Leta Bio-Innovate Program Manager, International Livestock Research Institute P.O. Box 30709, Nairobi, Kenya Email: Direct line: +254 (0)20 422 3216 Fax: +254 (0)20 422 3001 Website: