Sunday, April 22, 2007

Prizes for Innovation in African Agriculture

Purdue professor Dr. William A. Masters has done, and continues to do, a lot of work in the area of innovation prizes for African agriculture. You will see a lot of details and supporting documents on this site. His proposal is similar to the X PRIZE type of innovation prize concept, but more complicated in that it tries to measure the value of different agriculture innovations rather than specifying a particular desired innovation up-front. One recent update on the site is that there was a presentation to the X PRIZE Foundation recently, but I don't see any additional details on that presentation. The framework paper "Prizes for Innovation in African Agriculture: A Framework Document" was an important one in my thinking as I wrote the paper on space prizes shortly before starting this blog. In addition to explaining the need for innovation prizes in African agriculture and detailing a specific prize model to accomplish this, the paper gives a good overview of innovation prizes in general, including the CATS Prize and the X PRIZE.