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Remote sensing innovations for index insurance: Improving agricultural risk management in sub-Saharan Africa

Pietro Aldobrandini's picture

Natural disasters account for losses, on average, of US$51 billion in developing countries every year, yet only a small minority of these losses are insured. Smallholder farmers are particularly exposed to the unpredictability of climaterelated risks, e.g. drought and pests. These are difficult to tackle because they normally strike many farmers in the same area at the same time, making most risk management approaches or coping mechanisms unfeasible. Index insurance can offer a solution, helping to protect and encourage investment in smallholder agriculture and improve food security.

The project: an overview

  • Duration: 2012-2016
  • Goal: Contribute to sustainable approaches to index insurance that can help smallholders better manage their production risks.
  • Objective: Develop remote sensing products for index insurance that can accurately depict yield loss in smallholder farming due to weather and/or other perils, and be scalable in insurance schemes delivered at micro and meso levels.
  • Innovative remote sensing technologies are being tested in Senegal with lessons to be shared for application in the rest of the region and the entire insurance sector.
  • A strong consortium of public and private sector partners working in remote sensing, insurance, agricultural development and research has been established.

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