Media Release

The World Bank and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) will rapidly scale climate science to support agri-business in Zambia, tackling the climate challenge head on through the new AICCRA-Zambia Accelerator Grant.

(Lusaka) An exciting new accelerator grant was launched to rapidly scale climate science support for Zambia’s farming and agriculture.

The official launch of the AICCRA-Zambia Accelerator Grant brought together high-level dignitaries from the private and public sector, non-government organisations and research institutions to explore possible partnership models with actors from across Zambia’s agricultural ecosystem.

The launch of the grant mechanism was accompanied by a virtual Matchmaking Dialogue in Lusaka to connect partners, network, and learn about the innovative climate-smart agriculture solutions the grant aims to boost in Zambia.

Driven by AICCRA-Zambia and their partners, including the World Bank and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), the accelerator grant will fund small and medium agri-businesses that are working to provide actionable climate information services or climate-smart agriculture innovations at scale.

In Zambia, climate change threatens existing crop and livestock systems, impacting agriculture businesses, and undermining livelihoods. It is increasingly urgent for Zambian farmers and livestock keepers to be able to anticipate climate-related events and take appropriate preventative actions. The launch of the AICCRA-Zambia Accelerator Grant responds directly to this issue. It is also a timely reminder, in the lead up to COP26, of the need to strengthen resilience in vulnerable communities and smallholder farmers, and in women and young people in particular.

These services and innovations should be designed to help Zambian farmers and communities safeguard their livelihoods in the face of climate change. This accelerator grant seeks to build climate resilience inclusively, and use climate science to support Zambia’s ‘missing middle’ – small and medium agribusinesses and start-ups.

Five small or medium-sized business partnerships will each receive grants of up to US$50,000. These will be awarded to business partnerships working in the following areas:

    • sustainable financing for off-grid solar irrigation
    • integrated aquaculture-agriculture systems
    • addressing drought through climate smart seed varieties
    • diversified chicken/goats–legume systems
    • a “best in class” grant for gender and social inclusion for businesses working in any of the four areas above.

The call for applications will be live on, Africa’s largest digital platform for entrepreneurship and investments. To apply go to: The deadline is 4 December 2021.

Winners will be announced in January 2022.

Notes for Editors

AICCRA is the ‘Accelerating Impacts of CGIAR Climate Research for Africa’ programme and it is led by the CGIAR Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS). It is supported by a grant from the International Development Association (IDA) of the World Bank. AICCRA’s activities in Zambia are led by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI).

The CGIAR, formerly the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, is a global partnership that unites international organizations engaged in research about food security. CGIAR research aims to reduce rural poverty, increase food security, improve human health and nutrition, and sustainable management of natural resources.

Watch the AICCRA-Zambia Accelerator Grant video on YouTube.