Innovation is not about hiring an Einstein or creating a slogan. Everybody is capable of it, and the first sign that it is happening is when people work together, excited because they want to be there, focused on finding a solution to a challenge they all understand (Smit 2000)
a network of all public and private sector organizations, enterprises, and individuals involved in the process of knowledge creation, dissemination, adoption/adaptation and use, together with the institutions and policies that affect their behavior and performance.
patterns of partnership between scientific, developmental, service delivery organizations and poor farmers and the way this can lead to collective investigation, design and use of location specific technologies, agricultural practices and institutional arrangements.
the new skills and insights that farmers, NGOs, market actors, service delivery agencies and scientists get from each other when they interact through partnerships.
increasingly what is required is not generic technical solutions to agricultural problems, but instead local capacities to identify problems and develop solutions
this does not mean that farmers can solve all their problems themselves. Rather that there is a need to embed farmers in a network of supportive partnerships so they can draw knowledge from others, and combine this with their own and generate innovations in farm practice
the most important implication for policy of this is that common ways of promoting innovation in farm practice such as technology transfer need to be supplemented by approaches which focus on developing rural innovation capacity in this more holistic sense
New and very dynamic markets for ag products and services
Not just technology and production, but organisations (attitudes, practices and new ways of working), management, marketing changes- new types of knowledge which is not usually associated with conventional Ag R&D
The essence of the framework is the proposition that technology and other forms of knowledge can and does bring about the innovations (technical, institutional, market, organisational) needed for development progress.
However this will only take place when the correct conditions are created for bringing different ideas and bodies of knowledge together and allowing new ideas that emerge from this to be put into productive use.
recognition and utilization of multiple sources of knowledge
focus on capacity to solve problems rather than just training for technical capacity building
adopting an interactive communication function
viewing extension as a co-learning process and
From Extension to Extension-plus From To Form/content Tech dissemination Supporting rural livelihoods Improving farm productivity Improving farm and non-farm income Forming farmer groups Building networks Providing services Enabling farmers to access services from other agencies Market information Market development M&E Input & output targets Learning Planning & Implementation Doing it alone Partnerships Sources of innovation in extension Centrally generated Locally evolved (through experimentation)
From Extension to Extension-plus From To Approaches Fixed/uniform Evolving/diverse Staff capacity development Training Learning by doing, facilitated experimentation Capacity dev of extension system Personnel and infrastructure Dev of linkages and networks Policy approach Prescriptive/blue prints Facilitating evolution of locally relevant approaches Introducing new working practices Staff training Changing organisational culture through action learning Underpinning paradigm Technology transfer Innovation system
Making extension systems more efficient - Six principles
A sound agricultural policy is indispensable
Extension consists of ‘ facilitation ’ as much if not more than ‘technology transfer’
Producers are clients, sponsors and stakeholders , rather than beneficiaries of ag extension
Market demands create an impetus for a new relationship between farmers and private suppliers of goods and services
New perspectives are needed regarding private actors
Pluralism and decentralized activities require coordination and dialogue between actors
The current linear framework of “Research-Extension–Farmer” based on the transfer of technology paradigm is no longer relevant for addressing the wider extension agenda.
Extension needs to embrace systems frameworks such as innovation systems framework, which accommodates more number of actors, their interactions, role of institutions and learning to reinvent its future.
This is especially so in dealing with the poor. Quite often, communities continue to remain poor due to weak, non-existent and exploitative relationships with actors who have access to new production inputs, services and knowledge.