Set against a backdrop of considerable changes, the APM will give direction and meaning through our new strategy. Of particular note is the strategic intention to bridge the divide between research and development, to assure both excellent science and excellent development outcomes. This has been manifest through the advent of CGIAR Research Programs, and within ILRI through a new strategy and organizational structure. This raises some important questions including
  • How must we each behave and arrange our work to effectively take research to development?
  • How can we assure that scientific excellence is preserved and enhanced?
  • How can we effectively learn as we go?
  • How can we measure our value-for-money and assure the ongoing confidence of our investors?
  • What are the implications for (each of) us in the way that we do our work?

The APM provides a unique opportunity for all of ILRI staff to engage in organization wide conversations on purpose, practice and policy; offer new inspiration to galvanize key initiatives, foster team building and learning, and consolidate our commitments around ILRI’s new mission and vision. The outcomes of this event will be
  • Widespread individual and team awareness and buy-in of our new strategy
  • Identified big issues that we can immediately work on to make our strategy live
  • Agreement how we will implement the critical success factors set out in the strategy, and individual roles in this
  • Wider understanding of ILRI’s activities and their potential to achieve impact
  • A set of actions and suggestions to improve the way that ILRI operates

The APM will be held in Addis Ababa from May 15th to May 17th, 2013. There will be space for individual teams and programs to meet on May 13th and / or 14th, as desired. We are inviting all professional and scientific staff to join us in this exercise, subject to approval by their supervisors.
The first day will consist of a reflective review of our current status. This will entail a celebration of our work, a series of presentations on ILRI’s strategy, and a review of important global developments. This first day will consist of reviewing where we are, where we are going, and where the world around us is. We will use a series of interactive learning sessions where important ideas can be shared and understood. The afternoon will consist of a share fair style presentation of each department of ILRI who will succinctly share a) highlights of their work, b) key opportunities and issues in their work that they feel that ILRI staff need to know, and c) a list of desires that they would like identified departments of ILRI to do. By the end of this first day, we should collectively be equipped with a full picture of current issues and dynamics, juxtaposed against our context and new direction.

The second day will consist of both open space and interactive learning events to explore “unlocking livestock development potential through science, influence and capacity development.” Here, we will hand control of most of the day over to participants using a structured process of Open Space Technology[1] and Scenario Modeling. Part of the agenda will be co-created around the leading theme. From this, approximately 30 group products will be compiled.

The third day will be a half day event and will consist of prioritization and action planning to synthesize findings into the above stated outcomes.

In this way, the APM promises to be an event where we review, discuss, analyze, recommend and commit. It has been designed to harness our collective potential, to identify issues that need work, and to galvanize us all towards a future that appealingly beckons.


[1] http://www.openspaceworld.org/cgi/wiki.cgi?AboutOpenSpace