Evaluation at FAO

Evaluation of the Capacity Building for South African Professionals in the Field of Agriculture and Food Security project


This evaluation analysed FAO’s assistance to the Government of South Africa, specifically the Department of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries in developing the capacity of staff at the national and provincial levels, as well as improving outcomes for smallholder farmers through integrated support. It found that despite the ad hoc nature of trainings to the department’s officials, the project succeeded in supporting capacity development of individual beneficiaries through various sector specific trainings, young professional programmes and exchange visits. The establishment of the Institute for Development Assistance Management at the University of Fort Hare would ensure continued capacity development. The evaluation notes that supporting smallholder farmers through value chain development, particularly in production management (primary production) and market linkage, was key to the success of the capacity development efforts. It concludes that more support is needed to ensure systematic mentoring of emerging smallholder farmers on diversified agri-business value chains. It recommends that FAO should support the Government of South Africa in developing a coherent policy and framework for capacity development for the different stakeholders. It also recommends that future efforts should adopt a holistic approach, in line with FAO’s corporate capacity development strategy, which will include individual trainings complemented by support at the organisational and policy levels.