Your thoughts and feedback on Aggregator Platforms for Digital Services in Agriculture.

Dear Esteemed Listers,

Reports by AGRA and Disrupt Africa consistently position Kenya as the
global leader in the number of tech ventures and digital solutions for
agriculture (DSAs). By GSMA’s 2020 report which tracked 713 active DSAs,
more than half (437) were in sub Saharan Africa. Kenya led with 95 and
Nigeria was at a distant second with about half of Kenya’s number. Studies
have questioned the ability of these DSAs to scale out so as to
significantly impact a sector that is the mainstay of most sub Saharan
African economies (including Kenya).

My co-authors and I sought to contribute in diversifying the thinking about
efforts to unlock the promise of digitalisation and digital transformation
of agriculture in sub Saharan Africa. We conceptualised an aggregator
platform for digital services in agriculture (AP4DSA). This is a special
type of digital platform for agriculture whose characteristics can partially
be observed in nascent platforms such as Safaricom’s DigiFarm, EcoFarmer in
Zimbabwe, Bayer’s Climate FieldView, and an “imaginary instance of Google
play store for agriculture”. Such a platform can be expected to address DSA
discoverability challenges including fragmentation of the digital
agriculture ecosystem, absence of a one-stop-shop, and an unmet desire for
comprehensiveness.

We proceeded to examine the underlying structure of value creation sources
in such a digital platform as perceived by likely users in Kenya. We
recently published our findings in the Digital Business Journal on the link
below (pdf downloadable)

www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2666954421000065 (see
also attached graphical abstract)

I take this early opportunity to invite listers’ review of our findings. I
am particularly wishful for feedback about the issues of value chain
coverage and digital inclusivity, which our research finds as sub-themes of
platform inclusivity, a major theme on amplifying the value of such a
platform.

Kind regards.

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