Taruvinga Magwiroto When I hear development experts extol the virtues of “small grains”, and engage in campaigns for their adoption, I am a bit saddened. It reminds me of my late dear grandmother VaChisaku, and how she knew all about rapoko (rukweza), and how rapoko porridge stays firm in your stomach like a rock. She knew all about finger millet (mhunga) and sorghum (mapfunde) and … Continue reading The fall and rise of agricultural indigenous knowledge in Zimbabwe (Or a word to latter-day Alvords).
Originally posted on LIVESTOCK MATTERS ZIMBABWE:
East of England Agricultural Society Winter Stock Show, Dec 2018. Pic T.L. Magwiroto Taruvinga Magwiroto To a farming man or woman from anywhere else in the world, a visit to the East of England evokes an answering chord of unspoken camaraderie. Farmers the world over share with the fine women and men of the East of England these qualities:… Continue reading Marshal Papworth: the power of transformative facilitation.
Taruvinga Magwiroto Tick borne diseases (TBDs) are decimating cattle in Zimbabwe. While the statistics are understandably hard to capture, everyday we hear enough stories of woe on social media and farming-oriented WhatsApp groups to realise that this is a big problem, and is probably here to stay. It has become a silent epidemic ripping through the rural heartland of Zimbabwe. And the crucial question that … Continue reading Combating tick borne diseases in Zimbabwe: Back to the future?
Taruvinga Magwiroto In an earlier article, I introduced a way of theorising the emergent informal digital communities made up of multiple actors integrating into WhtasApp groups for purposes of participation, learning and innovating. In this instalment, I want to talk about some of the problems and issues faced by WhtasApp groups, particularly if conceived as development-oriented digital communities of practice. Group composition: the first obvious … Continue reading Adults learning together in WhatsApp Groups: Insights from the discipline of adult education.
Taruvinga Magwiroto I had an interesting discussion with my professor some time ago about problems and issues in agricultural extension philosophy. I observed that the American version of rural extension is premised more on educational studies, concerned as it is on building up the skill base of rural folks. In Europe, the focus is more on innovation; therefore extension theory is based more on communication. … Continue reading Reconfiguring agricultural extension in post land reform Zimbabwe: towards a new philosophy? (Part 1)
Taruvinga Magwiroto If there is one concept that defines development best practice today, it is “participation” and “participatory”. I am more interested in the philosophical issues on participation, and less on “participatory” because I think once something is dubbed “participatory”, be sure that it is not! In fact the development sector (which is unfortunately prone to “herd mentality”) has elevated “participation” to the point of … Continue reading Participation in farming-oriented WhatsApp groups: theory and practice (Part 1).
Taruvinga Magwiroto In Part 1 of this series, we discussed about some of the structural weaknesses in vocational agricultural curriculum design and implementation, and put forward a tentative suggestion for aligning the training with labour expectations and demands. Now, I will talk more about the envisaged institutional changes being mooted, that will see Agricultural Colleges move from being superintented by the Ministry of Agriculture to … Continue reading Reforming vocational agricultural education in Zimbabwe (Part 2)
Taruvinga Magwiroto Whilst there have been many discussions about how to improve Zimbabwe’s food security and the performance of its agriculture system in general, agricultural education has gone under the radar. But, as I will argue, agricultural education is a very critical part of the agricultural knowledge system. For most of my arguments, I will freely use evidence from Coombs and Ahmed (1974)’s excellent book: … Continue reading Vocational agricultural education reform in Zimbabwe: the arguments (Part1)