International scientists and researchers have developed a practical framework that will cut across all parameters of society to influence and promote better agricultural and nutrition policy choices and outcomes in Africa.

It has been dubbed as the ‘Kaleidoscope model for food security policy’, since the applied framework will act like a display (kaleidoscope) of refracting light on a new pattern but still focusing on a particular element of the policy process to reveal a different collection of key variables in the policy processes.

The model focuses on five key elements of the policy cycle namely agenda setting, design, adoption, implementation and evaluation that will be supported by 16 key determinants of policy change.

The model has so far been applied on case studies in Zambia, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania and Ghana on fertiliser subsidies and micro-nutrient interventions such as food supplementation and fortification.

Explaining the concept of the kaleidoscope model for policy change during the Feed the Future workshop on conceptualising the drivers of agriculture and nutrition policies, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) representative Suresh Babu said there is need for an understanding of how policies are made and implemented in different settings.

“Who is involved, how do they work together, what is the process of policy-making? Is it by stroke of a pen? Does it involve long debates and dialogues? Is it transparent, strategic, consistent, and sustainable?” he asked.

Mr Babu said drivers of change should understand the way policies are made and how they can help in improving the process by having a framework to study policy change processes.

He said the model is based on the review of existing approaches by taking into account the policy change process in the development policy contexts in developing countries.

The workshop has drawn participants from the donor community, academia, scientists, and media, and is hosted by the University of Pretoria in collaboration with USAID, Michigan State University and IFPRI.