FAO Capacity Development

Global Farmer Field School Platform

Facilitating the exchange of knowledge, expertise and innovation among FFS practitioners

Farmer Field School (FFS) is a participatory learning approach being used in a wide range of different contexts around the world. A FFS brings together a group of farmers, livestock herders or fisher folks, to learn on how to shift towards more sustainable production practices. It offers space for hands-on group learning, enhancing skills for critical analysis and improved decision making by local people. Since FAO pioneered this approach in the late 80’s, FFS have been implemented in over 90 countries, benefiting to over four million farmers.

In order to connect the growing network of practitioners and organizations using FFS, FAO has set up the Global Farmer Field School Platform. It is a virtual space for sharing knowledge and expertise on Farmer Field Schools. It is a means to connect a global Community of Practice and facilitate partnerships among institutions committed to sustainable farming, education and empowering people.

In recent years, several local and regional online networks and exchange mechanisms on FFS have been established.  The Global FFS Platform is also a means of linking them together as the basis for a worldwide network.

A hub to support quality FFS globally

The platform aims to strengthen the quality of FFS by facilitating the exchange of knowledge, expertise and innovation among its users. It also serves as a gateway to identify the impact, achievements and current challenges in FFS. The platform includes the following main features:

News and events: News and events regarding FFS around the globe are posted on the platform, highlighting good practices, emerging trends and innovations.

The FFS library: Over 300 documents (case studies, training manuals, impact assessments, journal articles, videos, pictures, etc.) are available in various languages. Members of the platform can post documents in the library. 

The global roster of FFS experts: Over 250 FFS resource persons from different regions of the world have registered themselves in the global roster of FFS experts, including master trainers, evaluators and project managers.

Interacting with FFS practitioners worldwide

In addition, the Global FFS discussion group (D-Group) is an e-mail group through which the global FFS community can interact. More than 1,000 practitioners from 113 countries share information, knowledge and advice. They are able to discuss and reflect on how to deal with specific challenges.

Members include farmer organizations, civil society, policy makers, researchers, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), private sector and government staff. 

The D-Group also organizes webinars and facilitates discussions on specific themes related to Field Schools or technical topics.

Supporting the development of capacities of FFS practitioners worldwide

The Platform provides FFS stakeholders worldwide a place of interaction and exchange of news and knowledge. All information is publicly available and the registered members of the Platform are able to add resources to the library, provide news and events, access contact details of FFS experts and add themselves as FFS experts in the global roster. The D-group, highly interactive, hosts the most active discussions and exchanges on FFS. With all these features, the Platform aims at providing indispensable tools to develop the capacities of FFS practitioners worldwide.

For more information:

Global FFS Platform: www.fao.org/farmer-field-schools/en/

D-group: https://dgroups.org/fao/fieldschools

FFS library: www.fao.org/farmer-field-schools/knowledge-repository/en/

FFS expert roster: www.fao.org/farmer-field-schools/expert-roster/en/

Read also about: Pastoralist Field Schools in Eastern Africa: Innovative climate adaptation in practice


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