Science, technology and innovation (STI) lies at the center of food systems transformation. To unleash countries and regions’ potential for agricultural innovation their human and institutional capacities need to be strengthened, and investments on capacity development (CD) for agricultural innovation systems (AIS) need to be scaled up. This Side Event shares successful examples of the partners of the Tropical Agriculture Platform (TAP), a global, multi-stakeholder facilitation mechanism on CD for AIS, supported by the European Union and coordinated by FAO. The session introduces the TAP approach to strengthen capacities for AIS at individual, organizational and policy level. Country/regional experiences in Africa, Latin America and Asia will be presented, with emphasis on development of functional capacities. Insights among regional organizations on evidence-based policy dialogue and investments on agricultural innovation, based on regional and country level assessments, will be shared.