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Seed System Assessments in BHA Programs | Challenges and Opportunities for Enhancing Uptake

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Technical Guidance
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Seed system assessments are critical to inform seed interventions. Seed System Security Assessments (SSSAs/SSAs) are one type of assessment that is often requested and/or expected by donors such as USAID; however, uptake and usage vary. In March 2021, the USAID Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA)-funded SCALE Award hosted two implementing partner (IP) consultations that included both HQ technical advisors and program implementers to better understand why this is the case and what can be done to improve SSSA adoption moving forward.

Following these consultations, SCALE led a debrief meeting with BHA staff, who contributed further reflections on the ways they have seen applications, assessments, and implementation fall short of meeting minimum standards when it comes to the use of seed systems assessments, and the steps that could be taken to strengthen these activities.

This document begins with a summary of BHA’s observations of the gaps and shortfalls around SSSA use at the application stage, collected during the debrief call. A summary of the main barriers to SSSA uptake and adoption as reported by the IPs during consultations follows. The document concludes with a brief analysis of the process and key takeaways.