Eastern Africa region

Eastern hub

The Hub covers a vast region that expands from the East African Community (EAC) to the west to the Horn of Africa in the north of the continent. The region is characterized by three major agroecological zones: (1) a fringe of the Sahelian drylands in the north with less than 90 days length of growing period (LGP) and less than 300 mm rainfall; (2) the mid-altitude savannas covering most of the Great Lake Region and highlands in the Horn of Africa, which has an elevation of 1200 m above sea-level and bimodal rainfall patterns; and (3) the wide lowland moist savanna and woodland zones area in the south with LGP between 210 and 270 days and a bimodal rainfall pattern in the northern part and unimodal in the south. There is a huge contrast between the wet and very dry areas, with very frequent droughts and floods in many parts of the region.

The major development challenges in the region include extreme poverty, where more than 70% of the population lives below the poverty line of US$1.25/day/person, and there is chronic/cyclic food insecurity. However, agriculture holds great potential to make a positive difference as again over 70% of the population is engaged in agriculture in one way or another.

Most of our R4D activities take place in Tanzania, Uganda, and Kenya, where our offices are located, but we work beyond these countries. In Tanzania, our activities focus on the sustainable intensification of mixed maize-legumes-livestock systems and on cassava and banana research. Uganda is at the forefront of our research on climate change in the coffee-banana systems and banana. Most of our biotechnology work takes place in Kenya at the Biosciences East and Central Africa (BecA) Hub.

Research Highlights

  • Safer staples
  • Two ways to tackle the dual threat on cassava
  • Keeping Banana Xanthomonas Wilt (BXW) in check

Stations and Contacts


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