20 August 2008

Meeting of Minds, Sharing of Knowledge: e-Agriculture next week in Japan

e-Agriculture at the IAALD-AFITA-WCCA World Conference

I'm looking forward to joining the World Conference next week. It is a great opportunity that all three organizations have joined together for this conference, as I am sure it will not only bring together a large group of people from around the world dedicated to the application of ICT in development, but will also bring together a wide cross-section of experiences, knowledge and perspectives, from organizational capacity building to IT infrastructure, from metadata standards to community KS forums. It is this opportunity to interact and form new relationships, share knowledge and extend our personal networks that will be the great value at the end of the four days.

The conference takes place 24-27 August 2008 in Atsugi, Japan at the Tokyo University of Agriculture. The e-Agriculture plenary session will be on Wednesday, 27 August, from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM. I really believe in the e-Agriculture initiative and am pleased that I was asked to participate in this event.

Information from the e-Agriculture news flash sent out yesterday notes:

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, UPOU;
- Manish Pandey, Deputy General Manager, Katalyst-Swisscontact;
- Michael Riggs, Information Management Specialist, FAO RAP;
- Roxanna Samii, International Fund for Agricultural Development;
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 www.e-agriculture.org.

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

Launch of CIARD

There will also be a plenary session on the 27th to launch CIARD, the Coherence in Information for Agricultural Research for Development. Earlier this year, a group of organizations from around the world got together to establish this initiative, which aims to make agricultural research information publicly available and accessible to all. Several of the founding partners will be present to help launch CIARD with all the World Congress' participants this day.

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