Information behaviour of farmers, foresters, and advisors in the context of digitalisation in the EU

This paper provides insights into the information behaviour of European farmers, foresters, and advisors in the context of the ongoing digital transformation. Data collection and analysis for this study were carried out as part of a substantial innovation project to create a new online knowledge platform, called EU FarmBook, for primary sector practitioners. Besides informing the design and development of this user-centred platform, this study also provides useful inputs to better understand the perceived information needs, preferences, and information behaviour of primary sector practitioners, which is an underexplored area of Agricultural Knowledge and Innovation Systems (AKIS) in Europe. This paper presents and draws on 40 semi-structured interviews conducted with farmers, foresters, and advisors from 20 different countries. The results reveal some of the major ways in which the rapid advancements in digital information and communication technologies have affected farmers, foresters, and advisors. The problem-solving strategies of primary sector practitioners now rely largely on online resources. Searches for photos and videos have become a particularly integral activity that reflects their practice-oriented and solve-it-yourself attitudes. This has implications for agricultural extension services, which must be prepared for the challenges and changes that the digital revolution will bring to extension work.

The Agricultural Knowledge and Innovation System in Italy: dynamics, incentives, monitoring and evaluation experiences

The new challenges facing the European agricultural and rural sectors call for a review of the links between knowledge production and its use to foster innovation, and for a deeper analysis of the potential of the current Agricultural Knowledge and Innovation Systems (AKIS) to react to the evolving context. This paper highlights how the Italian AKIS places itself in the new emerging framework, with a particular emphasis on the incentives guiding the system and the experiences of monitoring and evaluating the national AKIS policy. It shows that important changes are needed to approach the new efforts Europe is adopting to match innovation demand and supply.

The contribution of facilitated group learning to supporting innovation amongst farmers

There is increasing awareness of the need for new approaches to delivering agricultural extension based on an interactive model of networking systems which integrate knowledge production, adaptation, advice and education. This paper explores the literature surrounding the modelling of farmer decision making, concepts of learning and behaviour change, and ways to stimulate attitude and behaviour change. It shows that facilitated group learning can be a very effective tool for supporting innovation amongst farmers and cites the ADER project, which was implemented in the East of England region between 2001 and 2007, as an example of good practice.

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  • Scopus SJR (2023): 0.29
  • Scopus CiteScore (2022): 2.0
  • WoS Journal Impact Factor (2022): 1.2
  • WoS Journal Citation Indicator (2022): 0.45
  • ISSN (electronic): 2063-0476
  • ISSN-L 1418-2106



Publisher Name: Institute of Agricultural Economics Nonprofit Kft. (AKI)

Publisher Headquarters: Zsil utca 3-5, 1093-Budapest, Hungary

Name of Responsible Person for Publishing:        Dr. Pal Goda

Name of Responsible Person for Editing:             Dr. Attila Jambor

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

The publication cost of the journal is supported by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

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