This paper reviews two cases of enabling greater farmer participation in policy advocacy at local and national level in Bolivia. The first case refers to the Committee of Sacaca for Strengthening Ecological Farming (COFAES), a farmer's organization in Sacaca, North Potosi. The second involves the National Soil Platform, a national-level multi-actor network that champions soil conservation. Both initiatives seek to influence policy at different levels in favour of soil conservation and sustainable agriculture. These examples are instructive on how farmers may become increasingly involved in policy formulation processes. COFAES started sharing its experience on ecological agriculture with local traditional leaders, and subsequently it elaborated a collective perspective on development. The National Soil Platform became organized around reviewing governmental policies, and eventually it took on the task of articulating a law on soil management and conservation. The role of farmers' participation is different in each case, although both seek the leadership of traditional peasant and indigenous organizations. We argue that thematic platforms built on the collective interests of farmers can encourage farmer involvement in advocacy and policy formulation. The paper presents favourable conditions as well as interactive tools that may facilitate the process.
Vargas, E.; Burgoa, W. Farmers&#8217; participation in Policy Advocacy: Reviewing two cases from Bolivia. (2009) 7 pp.