CCRI research team at 13th IFSA Symposium in Crete

IFSA Symposium 2018

A CCRI team has been in Chania in Crete attending the 13th European Farming Systems Symposium (IFSA – European Group) Symposium, which has been looking at ‘Farming systems facing uncertainties and enhancing opportunities’, which took place between 1st to 5th July.

The symposium was held in the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Chania, and hosted by the Lab. of Agricultural Extension, Rural Systems & Rural Sociology, Dept. of Agricultural Economics & Rural Development, Agricultural University of Athens.

Julie Ingram, who is on the steering IFSA committee, was the theme leader for Theme 3 ‘Integrating science, technology, policy and practice’, in which she chaired the presentation of several papers. She was also involved in Theme 4 ‘Smart technologies in farming and food systems’.

The CCRI team also presented several papers at the symposium.

“Reflections on co-constructing a digital adviser with stakeholders in agriculture and forestry”, (Julie Ingram and Peter Gaskell), was presented by Julie Ingram as part of Session 4.4 ‘Smart farming, advisory services and knowledge systems’, on Wednesday 4th July.

This paper reflected on the methodology used in developing a smart search engine, a ‘digital advisor’ which aimed to help practitioners and advisers in the field of agriculture and forestry find and share documents that respond to their specific queries. The methodology involved participation of the stakeholder community in 10 case studies across Europe. The paper pays particular attention to the role of the stakeholders in construction of an ontology, a structured vocabulary. This work describes the development of  in the EU funded VALERIE project.

The following paper was presented by Damian Maye as part of the SUFISA session, and drew on work as part of the EU funded SUFISA project about farmer strategies to deal with market and policy uncertainties.

“Farmer strategies to manage market uncertainty: commodity-level analysis and critique”
Damian Maye, James Kirwan, Hannah Chiswell, Mauro Vigani, José Muñoz-Rojas, Erik Mathijs, Isabelle Bonjean, Martin Hvarregaard Thorsøe, Egon Noe, Susanne Von Münchausen, Mikelis Grivins, Pierre-Marie Aubert, Piotr Nowak, Francesca Minarell.

James Kirwan, Hannah Chiswell and Damian Maye also attended a SUFISA project meeting on the Thursday and the Friday, where they led discussions on the finalisation of the case study work, including a comparative report and a cross-regional producer survey.

The team also hosted an AgriDemo project session at IFSA, during which they reviewed the Agridemo case study work and shared experiences with PLAID, a parallel project looking at farm demonstrations. Julie Ingram presented the following paper during this session, which took place on Thursday, 5th July:

“Identifying functional characteristics that enable learning in demonstrations: a discussion paper”
Julie Ingram, Hannah Chiswell, Jane Mills, Lies Debruyne, Hanne Cooreman, Alex Koutsouris, Eleni Pappa, Fleur Marchand.

Following this Julie and Hannah contributed to a full day’s AgriDemo project meeting on Friday 5th July in which CCRI’s work package (4) was a core element.

The team also enjoyed a field trip, which included an avocado farm and a brewery tour.

Pictures from the IFSA field trip