SEWOH Lab

The role of digitalization in creating socially inclusive and transformative food systems

This action-oriented research project explores, applies, and evaluates the potential of digital innovation in three key areas: urban agriculture and nutrition; ecosystem-based climate adaptation; and women's access to land. The project focusses on developing and advancing concrete solutions for low-income urban populations and small-scale farming communities in several African countries and India.
The aim of the Urban Agriculture and Nutrition thematic research strand is to explore the role of digital solutions in further strengthening food security and livelihood opportunities for marginalized groups. We explore how digitalization can enhance the empowerment of vulnerable groups through strengthening access to information and public services, lowering transaction costs along agri-food chains, and improving the design and enforcement of relevant public policies.
Our workstream on ecosystem-based climate adaptation (EbA) investigates how local support systems can overcome social barriers in last-mile connectivity and make digital information available to all intended users regardless of their gender and wealth and education status. In this regard, digitalization is not regarded as an end in itself but as a means to empower farmers, and other land users, as proactive agents of transformation who use digitalization to enhance the climate resilience of agro-ecosystems and thus their food production.
The Gender and Land Rights workstream focuses on digital tools such as monitoring and alert systems for supporting women’s land rights and report rights violations. We aim equally at an in-depth analysis of the opportunities as well as risks of digital innovations in the context of strengthening tenure security for women. Together with our partners Kenya Land Alliance and Rainforest Foundation UK, we are piloting a digital reporting tool in two counties in Kenya.
Central to the SEWOH Lab is the question of how, and under what conditions, digitalization translates into practical opportunities for addressing the numerous challenges mentioned above. This requires understanding broader social, political and institutional dynamics, and, where necessary, exploring the kinds of social and organizational innovations needed to harness the potential of digital technologies to deliver on multiple targets under the Sustainable Development Goals, including food and nutrition security, sustainable natural resource use, and resilience to climate change.
Team

News & Blog Posts

Governance: A key missing link in tackling climate-related transboundary threats
Blog Post

Governance: A key missing link in tackling climate-related transboundary threats

Highlights of a GLF Climate expert session co-organized by TMG and IGAD-ICPAC on the sidelines of UNFCCC COP 27
Crowdsourcing land rights data to improve women’s tenure security
Blog Post

Crowdsourcing land rights data to improve women’s tenure security

Exploring what it takes to leverage the potential of digital technologies on the ground
How can smallholder farmers benefit from soil carbon initiatives? Lessons from REDD+
Publication

How can smallholder farmers benefit from soil carbon initiatives? Lessons from REDD+

New SEWOH Lab study on carbon sequestration initiatives exploring what we can learn from REDD+ implementation
TMG and partners kickoff activities on ecosystem restoration in India
News

TMG and partners kickoff activities on ecosystem restoration in India

Analysing the linkages between digitalisation, ecosystem restoration and food security
Who benefits? SEWOH Lab study explores farmers’ engagement in carbon sequestration schemes
Blog Post

Who benefits? SEWOH Lab study explores farmers’ engagement in carbon sequestration schemes

Findings from research on carbon sequestration in agricultural soils
Easing access to land for Africa’s youth: Are community land lease arrangements the answer?
Blog Post

Easing access to land for Africa’s youth: Are community land lease arrangements the answer?

Addressing structural constraints that discourage young people from joining the agricultural sector

Publications

How can smallholder farmers benefit from soil carbon initiatives? Lessons from REDD+

Working Paper

How can smallholder farmers benefit from soil carbon initiatives? Lessons from REDD+

Bruno St-Jacques, Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Raymond Achu Samndong & Torsten Krause

This paper aims to contribute to emerging debates on soil carbon sequestration by investigating the conditions required to deliver multiple benefits for smallholder farmers

A review of the participation of smallholder farmers in land-based carbon payment schemes

Working Paper

A review of the participation of smallholder farmers in land-based carbon payment schemes

Yvonne Tamba, Joshua Wafula, Christine Magaju, Ermias Aynekulu, Leigh Winowiecki, Bruno St-Jacques, Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Cristina Arias-Navarro

This paper highlights approaches for smallholder engagement, identifies key barriers to participation, and outlines options to enhance farmers’ agency.

Note conceptuelle du SEWOH Lab : Sécurité foncière des femmes et numérisation

Concept Note

Note conceptuelle du SEWOH Lab : Sécurité foncière des femmes et numérisation

Oscar Schmidt

L'équipe de gouvernance foncière du TMG publie un court document décrivant l'approche de l'axe de travail Genre et droits fonciers du projet SEWOH Lab.

SEWOH Lab Concept Note: Women’s Tenure Security and Digitalisation

Concept Note

SEWOH Lab Concept Note: Women’s Tenure Security and Digitalisation

Oscar Schmidt

A short paper detailing the approach, research agenda and work packages that make up the Gender and Land Rights workstream of the SEWOH Lab project

Videos

  • Innovative digital tools to enhance food security in Africa (Highlights)

    A contribution to debates on the EU Comprehensive Strategy with Africa

  • Innovative digital tools to enhance food security in Africa (Event Recording)

    A contribution to debates on the EU Comprehensive Strategy with Africa

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TMG Think Tank for Sustainability consists of TMG Research gGmbH, an independent, non-partisan, non-for-profit organisation registered in Berlin (District Court Charlottenburg, HRB 186018 B, USt.-ID: DE311653675) and TMG - Töpfer Müller Gaßner GmbH, a private company registered in Berlin (District Court Charlottenburg, HRB 186018 Bm USt.-ID: DE311653675).

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