System Dynamics: Climate Adaptation in the Nigerian Agricultural Sector


Supported by the USAID-Food Security Policy Innovation Lab, located at Michigan State University, this project seeks to identify drivers of agricultural productivity in Nigeria, and how the agricultural system may be impacted by climate change and other dynamic changes.


We convened a meeting of stakeholders in the Nigerian agricultural sector from five regions of the country in June, 2016. Participants drew causal loop diagrams (CLDs) depicting current barriers to productivity in the Nigerian agricultural sector, and how climate change intersected with those barriers. We are now using the CLDs, literature, publicly available data, and the World Bank Living Standards Measurement Study data to construct a quantitative simulation model depicting climate impacts on key Nigerian crops (likely, maize, cassava and sorghum) in both northern and southern regions of the country under climate change. These models will be discussed with stakeholders individually before being presented at a second large stakeholder meeting for feedback and scenario development in 2018.


We are partnering with numerous Nigerian entities for this project, including State ministers of agriculture, Oyo State College of Agriculture and Technology, the University of Ibadan, ICRISAT Nigeria, and other stakeholders at the regional level. We are taking a ‘convening of convenors’ approach, leveraging relationships with important actors in the agricultural sector to involve farmers, decision makers, and agricultural suppliers/distributors on a more local level.


  1. At least two reports with policy recommendations 
  2. An SD model with an interface that decision makers in Nigeria may use to examine the potential impacts of climate change on important crops, and the effectiveness of adaptation efforts
  3. Three to four peer-reviewed journal articles

We are using VenSim to construct the models for this project.