August 2008


GFAR through their electronic website and portal known as E-GFAR has been supporting the promotion of the KS project by adding information on and links to the project in various places on its website.

GFAR is a multi-stakeholder initiative that contributes to eradicating poverty, achieving food security, and conserving and managing natural resources. It enhances national capacities to generate, adapt and transfer knowledge. The CGIAR is a stakeholder in GFAR.

EGFAR is a key tool through which GFAR plays its facilitating role. EGFAR is the website of all ARD stakeholders and all are welcome and encouraged to visit us, subscribe to our information tools and contribute to keep the contents of this website updated.” [EGFAR-website]

In keeping with their mission to develop an electronic platform to which stakeholders can contribute to the content, GFAR has supported the CGIAR ICT-KM program’s Knowledge Sharing project in promoting itself through this valuable mechanism.

Information on and links to the KS project on E-GFAR includes:

– being able to find the latest News items from the KS blog under the ‘News from Partner websites’ page at http://www.egfar.org/egfar/website/new/newsrss

– the KS website is now one of the selected websites that are searched in the E-GFAR Google Custom search engine at http://www.egfar.org/egfar/website/webring/ardsearch/googleCustomEngine

– the KS website is now on the list of useful links in the E-GFAR WebRing section at http://www.egfar.org/egfar/website/webring/links

The Young Professionals’ Platform for Agricultural Research for Development (YPARD) recently closed the call for sponsoring three young professionals to participate in the upcoming FAO-CGIAR Knowledge Sharing Workshop, a three-phased event that combines online and face-to-face interaction.

There was an overwhelming response to this call out of which 3 participants were selected based on pre-defined criteria. And the winners are:

  • Batungwa Frank Tumusiime (Uganda)
  • Ahmed Omran (Egypt)
  • Taraneh Ebrahimi (Iran)

We congratulate the winners and look forward to a successful workshop!

The Global Forum on Agricultural Research has released two important documents on Information and Communication Management for Agricultural Research for Development.

– Advocacy by Regional Forums for Improving Information Sharing and Exchange in Agricultural Research for Development
http://www.egfar.org/egfar/website/new/newspage?contentId=2081
This document represents a collaborative effort by the GFAR Secretariat and the Regional Forums to agree on a common policy for advocacy on ICM.

The document details what and how the Regional Forums should advocate and what the role of the GFAR Secretariat should be.

– The ARD Web Ring
http://www.fao.org/docs/eims/upload/242450/The%20ARD%20Web%20Ring_1.pdf
This document describes the idea of a “web ring” of ARD web spaces and proposes an approach based on a distributed architecture.

The Global ARD Web Ring is a “voluntary coalition of web spaces that share information related to agricultural research and innovation for development.” These web spaces make ARD related information sources more accessible through each other.

The International Water Management Institute(IWMI) has this week, at the Stockholm Water Week, released a report on a study they conducted based on “case studies from 53 cities in developing nations examining where wastewater was being generated, how much was being used in urban agriculture, and to what degree the water was being treated“[BBC website]. The study resulted in a number of interesting findings about both positive and negative effects of wastewater use in (urban) agriculture).

This has been covered by a number of news agencies including the BBC website article.

This study has also identified a number of practices which can help to alleviate the negative effects often incurred in wastewater use for farmers, caterers and others who are involved.

It is really just about minimising the risks from field to fork with a series of simple measures,” Dr Chartres explained. “[These include] letting the water settle in a pond, so a lot of the eggs from worms drop out of the water, and irrigating around the crops rather than on top of them.When the crop is harvested, it also needs to be washed with fresh, clean water in the market, and that water needs to be constantly changed so everything else is not contaminated.” [Taken from article on BBC website]

What this highlights therefore is that research such as this generates valuable knowledge which is required for informing and changing behaviour, practices and policies. In order for the research to influence these things and have an impact it must consider and work on the necessary next steps to get these messages out and knowledge about such practices into the hands of those who are using wastewater or handling products which are derived from wastewater irrigated agriculture. This may involve working directly with farmers or others using wastewater but may also involve equipping other intervention agents, such as extension officers, NGOs etc, with the right information and tools to work with communities directly.

How can we get key outcomes and impacts from this kind of research?

This is something that the IWMI Wastewater KSinR Pilot Project is working on. Based on findings from wastewater research projects conducted in urban areas in Ghana, the Pilot Project has been using knowledge sharing approaches in these research projects to:

  • better consult with, learn from and collaborate with various actors and stakeholders about the situation on the ground including the complexity and issues around wastewater use in agriculture (using Stakeholder meetings)
  • understand the adoption potential of various messages and practices being promoted from the research findings (using World Cafe approach)
  • disseminate research findings and messages about practices in appropriate and useful ways to the target groups intended (using flip charts, training and awareness videos, radio programs, etc)

Many of these efforts have been successful and efforts are continuing in trying to find ways which can better improve the impact of this valuable wastewater research.

e-Agriculture at the IAALD-AFITA-WCCA World Conference
(24-27 August 2008, Atsugi Japan)

Plenary session, Wednesday, 27 August, 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) will facilitate an e-Agriculture panel to deliberate issues of ICT as enablers in various critical areas of development, as well as the role of Public Private Partnerships (PPP) in support of e-Agriculture.

The session will be an interactive discussion with the audience, with the panel anchored by:
– Alexander Flor, Dean, Faculty of Information and Communication Studies, University of the Philippines Open University;

– Manish Pandey, Deputy Director, Katalyst-Swisscontact;
– Michael Riggs, Information Management Specialist, FAO Regional Office for Asia-Pacific;
– Roxanna Samii, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD);
and Stephen Rudgard, FAO, as the moderator.

The panelists will share knowledge and experiences, and the audience encouraged to contribute on topics such as the use of mobile telephony use in rural areas, with particular reference to ameliorate global soaring food prices, and knowledge brokering services in support of agricultural development, including Communities of Practice and approaches to building capacity.

There will also be a reprise of the issues arising in this year’s PPP online forum and eIndia conference discussion session entitled “Making e-Agriculture Work through Public Private Partnership in Asia”. Experience and lessons in Bangladesh (Katalyst) and West Africa (Tradenet) will be contributed.

Full details of the PPP online forum, and reviews of the two sessions organized by FAO, the Global Knowledge Partnership (GKP), OneWorld South Asia and Katalyst in the e-Agriculture track of India’s largest ICT Event, eIndia 2008 in July 2008, can be found on http://www.e-agriculture.org.

For more information on IAALD-AFITA-WCCA World Conference please see http://iaald-afita-wcca2008.org/

Bioversity International, the CGIAR ICT-KM program, FAO, IFAD and WFP are jointly organizing a 3-day event entitled Knowledge “Share Fair” for Agricultural Development and Food Security to be held at FAO Headquarters on 20 – 22 January 2009.

See the newly launched (but provisional) Knowledge “Share Fair” website

AIMS AND TOPICS

The Share Fair will provide an interactive experience, allowing staff and our Rome-based constituents to:

  • share and learn from each others good practices;
  • experiment with tools and methodologies for knowledge sharing;
  • create linkages and networks for future collaboration between the organizations;
  • develop ideas to support and enhance knowledge sharing within and across our organizations.

CALL FOR PROPOSALS

The purpose of the event is to showcase examples of good knowledge sharing practices in the field of agricultural development and food security. Specifically, we have structured the Fair to allow staff to learn from each other how knowledge sharing practices, methods and tools have enhanced their work and made their project(s) more successful and effective.

The Share Fair will showcase examples of knowledge sharing strategies, policies and operational practices using case studies, anecdotes, and face-to-face events.

We would like you to tell us a story about how you and/or your project dealt with one – or more – of the contexts (see Section 2 and 3 of the Call for Proposals).

Download Call for Proposals

SUBMISSIONS

All projects will be refereed through a peer review process. Potential contributors are strongly encouraged to submit their proposals no later than 15 October, 2008. You can submit your proposals via email to: share-fair@fao.org

Please note that this is a provisional Web page intended to advertise the Call for Proposals of the Knowledge Share Fair prior to the publication of the official Web site

A key assumption underlying this issue’s rationale is that mutual learning between Northern and Southern stakeholders is an important success factor, not only for knowledge strategies, but also for development processes overall. Therefore strategies aimed at facilitating mutual learning need to be woven into the very fabric of the development organisation. However, it is not clear how knowledge strategies have so far contributed to mutual learning and, if they have, what indicators they have used to account for this.

This issue of the journal aims to showcase studies of knowledge management for development strategies, and how these facilitate and catalyse reciprocal learning among different types of development organisations — NGOs, bilateral and multilateral organisations, community-based organisations, etc — in different locations, both North and South.

The submission deadline for the title and abstract is 15 September 2008.

If you would like to submit a paper, or be actively involved in this initiative in any other way, please send your abstract (minimum one paragraph — maximum one page) or your message by email to km4dj-editors@dgroups.org

See document– km4d-j_call_for_papers_vol4_2

Guidelines for authors are available on the journal website:
http://www.km4dev.org/journal/index.php/km4dj/about

Next Page »