Nadi, Fiji, 21 Nov 2011 -- Participants at an international workshop on information and knowledge management (IKM) for agricultural development were urged to move beyond strategies and undertake relevant action-oriented programmes.
In his opening address, Fiji’s Permanent Secretary for Agriculture, Colonel Mason Smith, said that participants should implement the strategies they come up with during the workshop. He also mentioned that this workshop was very timely, given the many challenges that the agriculture sector faces, especially those concerning food security and livelihoods.
"IKM is a critical component of development in the agriculture sector in the Pacific", said SPC’s Land Resources Division Acting Director, Inoke Ratukalou. According to Ratukalou, the Pacific needs to explore new technologies and opportunities to disseminate timely, accurate and up-to-date information on agricultural production, pest management and marketing to farmers and communities, supplementing existing agricultural extension strategies and networks.
The FAO Senior Extension, Education and Communications Officer, Seumanutafa Malcolm Hazelman, advised the workshop participants of the need to ensure an appropriate mix of traditional and modern IT use, given the diversity existing among and between countries in the region.
Entitled Moving beyond strategy to improve information and knowledge management for agricultural development in Pacific Island countries and territories the four-day workshop held in Nadi from 21 to 24 November 2011 is considering new dimensions in IKM and how they can benefit the Pacific region.
The workshop aims to assist Pacific Island countries and territories (PICTs) in making efficient and effective use of information resources, as today’s agricultural innovations are becoming increasingly market-linked and as such will require new knowledge and tools.
With the aim of promoting greater involvement and participation of organisations and institutions in the global movement — coherence in information for agriculture research for development (CIARD) — and to promote openness in information and communication management (ICM) models, the organisers are focusing on the fact that there is a need to implement effective IKM/ICM strategies to address the challenges facing the agriculture sector, strategies that are also relevant for the development stage of the different countries and territories.
Press release issued by SPC