AgriFuture Days 2015

IICTs for Sustainable Agriculture

  September 28th to 29 th Beijing, China

The use of ICTs in agriculture to improve productivity (with sustainability) has
evidently lagged substantially than it other spheres of economy and everyday
life.
The development of ICTs in agriculture are at the moment largely for use in very
large farms in economically developed countries though they would benefit
equally if not more in small farms which are resource poor in developing
countries.
ICTs for SMART/Precision agriculture are not scale neutral for all farming. They
face problems in:
• Availability
• Accessibility
• Affordability
• Applicability
• Relevance
• Usefulness
• Timeliness
• Trustworthiness
• Appropriation by Individual and/or her Community
• Making Effective Use of Information
The developing countries that need to innovate, adapt and adopt ICTs to improve
productivity of their small farmers do not have the capacities to do so. Neither is
there investment to research and develop appropriate ICTs for small farmers.
The Institutions that are needed to support the use of ICTs in agriculture, for
example, for more open access to data and information, are still not developed.
We know very little of how actors, especially farmers, and stakeholders like
consumers are being inclusively engaged to bring about effective management
and use of ICTs in agriculture.
WORKSHOP PROCESS
In this Workshop, through two stages, we are trying to answer two sets of
questions around:
(1) How can we improve the use of ICTs to start contributing today
and in the near future of 5-10 years to improve productivity of
farms in a sustainable way?
• What are the current technology drivers in using ICTs for sustainable
agriculture?
Examples of technology drivers:
1. Ubiquitous availability of cellular connectivity
2. Reduced cost of cell phones, sensors, connectivity
• What are the current technology barriers in using ICTs for sustainable
agriculture?
Examples of technology barriers:
1. Rural coverage of connectivity patchy
2. Standardized, interoperable, applicable content not available
• What are the current business and market drivers in using ICTs for
sustainable agriculture?
AgriFuture Days 2015
Examples of business and market drivers:
1. Consumer demand for agricultural commodities to be sustainably
developed
2. Need to improve efficiency and wastage for competing in markets
• What are the current business and Market barriers in using ICTs for
sustainable agriculture?
Examples of business and market barriers:
1. Little evidence yet of profitable return on investment on use of ICTs in
agriculture
2. Lack of Institutional support such as in copyright/intellectual property
rights
• How can we create opportunities now to effectively use these drivers and
overcome barriers to improve use of ICTs to improve productivity of
farms in a sustainable way?
Examples of creation of opportunities:
1. Legislation and executive action for opening data and information from
public sector organizations
2. Public sector investment in rural telecommunication and physical
infrastructure
(2) How do we prepare today so that after 10 years from now we can
use ICTs more effectively, where it is needed most, for
smallholder farming?
• What will be the future Technology Drivers in using ICTs for sustainable
agriculture?
• What will be the future Technology Barriers in using ICTs for sustainable
agriculture?
• What will be the future business and market drivers in using ICTs for
sustainable agriculture?
• What will be the future business and market barriers in using ICTs for
sustainable agriculture?
• How can we now create opportunities so that we can effectively use these
drivers and overcome barriers to improve use of ICTs 10 years from now
to improve productivity of farms in a sustainable way?