The CGIAR Research Program on Roots, Tubers, and Bananas (RTB), led by the International Potato Center (CIP), brings together the mandates of four CGIAR Centers related to research on roots, tubers, and bananas: CIP, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Bioversity International, and International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). In 2013 CIRAD, representing French research organizations became a full global partner with representation in the Steering and Management Committees.
The CRP aims “to more fully realize the potential of [mandate crops roots, tubers and bananas] for improving nutrition, income generation, and food security—especially among some of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable populations.”
The CRP’s mandate is thematically organized around its crops. The crops include banana, plantain, cassava, potato, sweetpotato, yams, and other tropical and Andean root and tuber crops— sometimes termed ‘vegetatively propagated staple crops’. These crops have several issues in common, including similar breeding challenges for highly heterozygous crops, seed management with bulky planting materials, postharvest issues associated with perishability and the frequencywith which women are involved in their production and postharvest use.
As with all CRP evaluations, the purpose of the evaluation of RTB is to provide essential evaluative information for decision-making by Program management and its funders on issues such as extension, expansion and structuring of the program and adjustments in some aspects of the program.