ENHANCING THE ROLE AND IMPACT OF FARMER BUSINESS NETWORKS/ADVISORY SERVICES ON NEW ZEALAND’S AGRICULTURAL KNOWLEDGE AND INNOVATION SYSTEM [AKIS] – THE FARMER PERSPECTIVE –

Eva Schröer-Merker, Alison Bailey, Thomas Perrier, Ani Kartikasari, Jacob Kambuta, Kevin Old

Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

Lincoln University, Lincoln, New Zealand

 

ABSTRACT

The Agricultural Knowledge and Innovation System (AKIS) is a concept that describes the different organisations and individuals involved in the process of innovation adoption and their links. Organisations are seen as the traditional source of advice, and historically, this was led by government institutions. In developed economies, disengagement of government in terms of information and advice provision has led to a rise in the privatisation of the service leading to a complex set of interrelationships.

The aim of this project was to provide recommendations for improving the performance and effectiveness of advisory services in strengthening the knowledge flows between science, in its widest context and practice, and the farming community, and with particular emphasis on the needs of the farmer.

This was achieved via consultation with the farming community through a series of sector-specific focus groups and a subsequent questionnaire survey.

The study found that farmers make decisions on the basis of a continuum of awareness creation through careful consideration and onto adoption/implementation. The types of information that farmers are looking for relate to three areas: business, operational, and compliance. The best way to facilitate the flow of information is through a farmer’s professional and social networks.


BIOGRAPHY

Eva is a Senior Tutor and Course Coordinator in Farm & Agribusiness Management at Massey University, New Zealand. Until its conclusion in 2017, Eva was also leading the ‘Farm Tools’ project for the Centre of Excellence in Farm Business Management (CEFBM), keeping up to date with farm tools and apps and speaking at events about the future of farming in view of technology.Before joining Massey, Eva headed up the International Farm Comparison Network’s (IFCN) Dairy Sector Analysis team at the Dairy Research Centre in Kiel, Germany. Eva has a Master of Science (Agribusiness) from Georg-August-University in Göttingen, Germany, which she passed with distinction.Coming from a mixed dairy, beef and cropping farm in Germany, Eva has deep roots in agriculture and is passionate about providing applied science and hands on advice to the sector.

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IFMA

The objective of the International Farm Management Association is to further the knowledge and understanding of farm business management and to exchange ideas and information about farm management theory and practice throughout the world. The IFMA is a non profit-making organisation and currently the Association has members in over 50 countries.

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Tourism Tasmania, Barnbougle Dunes, Ray Joyce, Health Holden, Graham Freeman, Joe Shemesh, Glenn Gibson, Hobart City Council, Nick Osborne, National Trust Tasmania, Dale Baldwin, Brian Dullaghan, Rob Burnett, Alistair Bett, Alice Bennett, Wai Nang Poon, Chris Crerar, Kathy Leahy, Flow Mountain Bike, Tasmanian Parks & Wildlife Service, James Bowden, Masaaki Aihara, Sean Feennessy, Bruce Irwin, Liz Knox