FARA participated at the ERA-ARD SAG Steering Committee meeting in Madrid, Spain 4-6 February 2008.
ERA-ARD has been formed to establish coherence and collaboration in European ARD. The ERA-NET brings together representatives from a range of stakeholders including various ministries and national public research organisations. With 11 participating countries, ERA-ARD has the critical mass necessary to drive forward the harmonisation and integration of Europe’s ARD effort. Given the existing fragmentation of ARD in Europe, the consortium is taking a pragmatic step-by-step approach to its work, starting with basic information exchange and leading up to transnational activity. The Southern Advisory Group (SAG) under the current phase of the ERA-ARD is operational until end June 2009.
The meeting confirmed ERA-ARD will focus on three areas namely, food safety, capacity development and food and energy. Capacity development (CD) should link to existing national and regional initiatives that are identified by FARA and RUFORUM. CD should be linked to policy making and monitoring and evaluation. It should not reinvent the wheel, rather build on successful stories and inter-active learning. ERA-ARD should build on existing initiatives and harmonize actions of EU member states.