Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Annoucement: e-mail conference from 4 June to 1 July 2012 on "Ensuring the full participation of family farmers in agricultural innovation systems

4 June to 1 July 2012. FAO is hosting a moderated e-mail conference  on "Ensuring the full participation of family farmers in agricultural innovation systems: Key issues and case studies".

The UN General Assembly has declared 2014 to be the International Year of Family Farming and has invited FAO to facilitate implementation of the International Year, in collaboration with its partners. Among its initiatives for the International Year, FAO is planning to publish a major study on family farming and Agricultural innovation systems (AIS) in 2014 in the State of Food and Agriculture series, which is FAO’s major annual flagship publication.

Agricultural innovation systems are systems of individuals, organizations and enterprises that bring new products, processes and forms of organization into social and economic use to achieve food security, economic development and sustainable natural resource management. AIS include a multitude of potential actors, such as producer organizations, research organizations, extension and advisory services, universities and educational bodies, governments and civil society organizations, co-coordinating bodies, individual farmers and farm laborers, and the private sector (including traders, processors, supermarkets etc.).

The e-mail conference is open to everyone, is free and will be moderated.

The Background Document to this FAO e-mail conference is available here.

Meeting the needs of smallholder farming families also provides the central theme of the GCARD RoadMap, which sets out the systematic changes required to transform and strengthen innovation systems to better meet the needs of resource-poor smallholders around the world.  Results from the FAO e-mail consultation will help inform discussion in The Second Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development (GCARD 2): “Foresight and partnership for innovation and impact on small-holder livelihoods” on practical actions underway and that are required to implement these systematic changes. The GCARD 2 will be organized in Punta del Este, Uruguay, 29 October – 1 November 2012, more information is available on the GFAR website.  The Pre-Registration for the GCARD 2012 Conference is now open.

Outcomes from the email consultation and the GCARD Conference will inform preparation of the major FAO study in 2014, as well as help to build cooperation around key forward-looking agendas and facilitate planning of joint actions among all AIS stakeholders to deliver large scale development outcomes.