Soil fertility degradation is a major issue in Sub-Saharan Africa. This report draws from the outcome of a workshop (Soil fertility degradation in sub-saharan Africa: Leveraging lasting solutions to a long-term problem) held in March 2002 at Bellagio. It reviews the continuing problem of soil fertility degradation and its multiple impacts on the livelihoods of different sectors of African society; and progress toward combating it. It also helps identify priorities for research, development and institutional actions that will bring returns from investments to combat soil fertility degradation. This document was discussed at the stakeholder meeting at AGM02 , agenda item 5, session II.