For the Rio+20 meetings GFRAS together with FAO, Farming First, IFPRI and WFO published a position paper entitled "Building Knowledge Systems in Agriculture". Knowledge sharing is critical to supporting the three dimensions of sustainable development (social, economic, and environmental). Extension and advisory services are crucial knowledge-sharing institutions and key for linking scientific research, field-level innovations and innovators, markets, education, and other service providers.
This paper presents an overview of current opportunities and challenges facing efforts to increase
the impact of rural and agricultural extension. The starting point for this analysis is in recognition
that the days when agricultural extension was synonymous with the work of public sector agencies
are over. The ‘extension services’ described here may just as likely consist of an input vendor
advising a farmer about what seed to plant, a television station broadcasting a weather forecast...
The case study report contains a number of recommendations for the AJK Government
to strengthen the demand-driven approach for demanding agricultural extension and
other services through the multi-disciplinary Village Development Plans prepared by
rural Community Organizations. As the recommendations are aimed at improving
a specifi c situation, they are not generic and therefore not being included in the Executive
Summary. The conclusions and lessons learned from the case study, however, are
being presented here for other developing countries in case they want to adopt the
demand-driven extension modality.
This study reviews and analyzes different successful experiences in Central America where extension experts have had a key role in achieving results within the framework of an agricultural innovation system. Our goal is to generate inputs and raise questions about the new role that should be taken by technical advisory systems and how they should be supported and strengthened within national extension systems.
This book represents the proceedings of the FAO international technical conference dedicated to Agricultural Biotechnologies in Developing Countries (ABDC-10) that took place in Guadalajara, Mexico on 1-4 March 2010. A major objective of the conference was to take stock of the application of biotechnologies across the different food and agricultural sectors in developing countries, in order to learn from the past and to identify options for the future to face the challenges of food insecurity, climate change and natural resource degradation.
During the period 2002-10, FAO undertook an intense activity of biosafety capacity development, largely centred on enhancing the capacities of regulators and other technical staff involved in the implementation of biosafety frameworks, along with other components. The training programme was tailored to meet the needs of a very specific audience: biosafety regulators, policy-makers and members of national biosafety committees, with diverse educational backgrounds, not necessarily well versed in all the biosafety-related fields.
The FAO Biotechnology glossary is a convenient reference source for researchers, students, technicians and translators. It provides consolidated, comprehensive and accessible definitions of over 3,000 terms and acronyms that are used regularly in biotechnology, including genetic engineering, and closely allied fields. The original English version, prepared by A. Zaid, H.G. Hughes, E. Porceddu and F. Nicholas in 2001, has progressively been translated into nine languages, the most recent ones being Chinese (2010) and Polish (2011). The Glossary has also been released as a multilingual CD-ROM.
The October 2010 issue of the scientific journal Biomass and Bioenergy contains this article by J. Ruane, A. Sonnino and A. Agostini, which is an abbreviated and updated version of the background document prepared for an e-mail conference hosted by the FAO Biotechnology Forum on the same subject.
This study is the result of the in-depth review of FAO’s capacity building activities in biosafety. It provides a general presentation of FAO’s conceptual framework on biosafety – the FAO Biosecurity framework – and illustrates the portfolio of past and current biosafety projects at national, regional and global level, together with their structure, components and financing modality.
This publication is expected not only to contribute to planning FAO future activities in this area, but also to provide strategic inputs to the formulation of shared biosafety capacity building strategies at the global level.
There is currently an enormous need to mobilize agricultural extension services for food security and to achieve a range of rural development goals. Urgent efforts
are required to enhance access to and knowledge about new technologies, to ensure that farmers and other actors in value chains can deal with changing markets, to enable farmers to understand new challenges arising due to the changing climate, to support rural communities to manage their natural resources more effectively, and to assist farmers to make optimal use of their available resources to ensure food for their families.