I am Arouna Dissa, Malian and working at the Malian National Agricultural Research Institute known in French as Institut d’Economie Rurale (IER). Currently, I am a PhD student at the Wageningen University and Research (WUR), with the Plant Production Systems Group (PPS). My research is part of the project “Pathways to Agro-ecological Intensification (AEI) of crop-livestock systems in Southern Mali”, financed by Mcknight Foundation. Producers in this region are mostly smallholder farmers lacking financial resources to purchase inputs, such as improved varieties and fertilizer. Furthermore, they are facing challenges to produce more food to sustain their livelihoods, such as the degradation of natural resources but also, different kinds of risks, including climate variability and price volatily. Their current poor access to markets, including those of goods, credit and inputs is an additional barrier to deal with the various difficulties they are facing. Therefore, my research is about understanding how market linkage of smallholder farmers and collaborations in promising food value chains can contribute to fostering AEI. By so doing, I will work with farmers and other relevant actors of these value chains to develop farm management tools, examine constraints and opportunities in collaborating in value chains, investigate the role of science in the negotiation between chain stakeholders and finally assess the role of co-innovation in farming risk mitigation.