Complex problems such as how to deliver equitable sustainable agricultural intensification in Africa require innovative solutions. Finding such solutions requires diverse stakeholders to engage and learn together with the ultimate aim of developing the collective commitment and capacity to turn ideas and plans into action. This can be achieved through facilitating multi-stakeholder engagement and learning processes.

These learning platforms can be considered a learning alliance, that is, a series of linked platforms existing at different institutional levels (community, district, national regional, global), created with the aim of bringing together a range of stakeholders interested in innovation and the creation/ use of new knowledge in an area of common interest. This will enable learning to take place within a framework of local and national conditions and norms and will ensure that what is produced is relevant and appropriate and is essential to address the issue of scaling up.

The SAIRLA Learning Alliance will thus bring together a range of stakeholders with an interest in sustainable agricultural intensification in sub-Saharan Africa. Decision makers and investors at local, national and international levels will have access to an evidence base that shows what works and what is unlikely to work in reaching women and the poorer smallholders in Africa, particularly the target countries of Ethiopia, Tanzania, Ghana, Malawi, Mali and Zambia.