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Introduction to foresight

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Introduction to foresight

  1. 1. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement An introduction to foresight Robin Bourgeois GFAR Secretariat Thefuturesustainabilityof ruralareas andimplications forAfricaFeedingAfrica Pre-plenary foresight event Accra, 15-16 July , 2013 6TH AFRICA AGRICULTURE SCIENCE WEEK & FARA GENERAL ASSEMBLY
  2. 2. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Background: improved foresight “Forward-looking, anticipatory research and analysis needs to integrate a range of perspectives on key issues, making use of the best available data and interpretations from different sources and directly integrating the diverse views of farmers and other stakeholders on specific problems, so that important issues are examined through multiple ‘lenses’.”
  3. 3. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Background: improved foresight “The need for improved foresight must be addressed by mobilizing expert analyses within countries ... and bringing together, via GFAR and the regional fora and on a coherent and regular basis, the diverse national and international initiatives ..., learning from the outcomes of the different models and perspectives employed.”
  4. 4. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Content Defining foresight What do we know? What can we do together?
  5. 5. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Defining foresight • “A process which combines three fundamental elements: prospective approaches: long-term or forward-looking, planning approaches: including policy-making and priority-setting, participative approaches: engaging stakeholders and knowledge sources”. A working definition for the GCARD2: Foresight = “forward-looking, anticipatory research and analysis”
  6. 6. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Defining foresight: engaging in foresight Knowledge (how the future could be, why) – Understanding the futures Interaction (where we want to go together) – Choosing our future Change (what can we do, how) – Creating our future “We cannot predict the future, we can create it” scientists, governments, companies, donors, …
  7. 7. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Defining foresight: methods Qualitative to Quantitative Context dependent No single/best approach Fits objective and resources Allows participatory approaches
  8. 8. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Defining foresight: methods Projections and simulations based on quantitative methods 2 1 Likely Wanted Plausible Unwanted Toda y 2025 2040 6 5 3 4Ruptur e Scenarios and visioning based on qualitative methods Both are needed…
  9. 9. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Content Defining foresight What do we know? What can we do together?
  10. 10. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know? The current state of foresight in agriculture The inventory New challenges/priorities Controversies Current practices Impact
  11. 11. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Contacts: 5000 + Answers: 1000 + Positive: 400 + Selected: 43 36 State of Foresight Report 3 Write workshops Analysis and synthesis 38 Briefs The Futures of Agriculture Synthesis What do we know : the foresight inventory
  12. 12. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know? The current state of foresight in agriculture The inventory New challenges/priorities Controversies Current practices Impact
  13. 13. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know: new challenges/priorities  More focus on food insecurity  The “Farming World” questions  Policies and societal values as drivers of changes
  14. 14. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know: new challenges/priorities  Explore alternatives to technology-based farm productivity  How consumers may change attitudes and behaviours  Account more for diversity
  15. 15. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know? The current state of foresight in agriculture The inventory New challenges/priorities Controversies Current practices Impact
  16. 16. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know: controversies –Larger more concentrated farms –Smaller more diversified farms –Something else? –Food security ensured by: –Family agriculture –Large industrial farms –Something else? Evolution of farming patterns
  17. 17. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Future agricultural land uses Agricultural land expansion • Agricultural land reduction Multifunctional use • Specialized use Rural area abandonment • Rural area revitalization What do we know: controversies
  18. 18. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Future links between production and consumption • Standardization of consumption patterns and food supplied by international market versus • Regional and diversified consumption patterns supplied by local/proximity production systems What do we know: controversies
  19. 19. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What did we learn? The current state of foresight in agriculture The inventory New challenges/priorities Controversies Current practices Impact
  20. 20. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know: current practices  Global/regional works more quantitative, less inclusive  National works more qualitative, more inclusive  Absence of LDC  Absence of FO/CSO
  21. 21. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What did we learn? The current state of foresight in agriculture The inventory New challenges/priorities Controversies Current practices Impact
  22. 22. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What do we know: impact  Capacity to affect stakeholders  Influence or change  Capacity to change policy and orient actions  Impact evaluation is still insufficient
  23. 23. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Content Defining foresight What do we know? What can we do together?
  24. 24. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Issues • Reaching the limits of the planet (water, land, energy, biodiversity) • The future of civilization: End, Clash, Polarity, Positive chaos • The consciousness of humankind: Fatalism, Fundamentalism, Scientism, Pragmatism • Difficulty of the global community to address sustainability
  25. 25. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Questions Who can design a new planet? How? What new planet?
  26. 26. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Who: Answer 1 YOU.
  27. 27. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Who: Answer 2 ME.
  28. 28. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Who: Answer 3 WE. TOGETHER
  29. 29. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What new planet?
  30. 30. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Rural poles Rural continuums Rural stations Rural ghettos Today Revitalisation of rural areas Abandonment of rural areas Smaller numerous multifunctional farms linked to local markets of diversified products Fewer large agro- industrial farms linked to global markets of standardised products Rural oases
  31. 31. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement How? Change leadership: evolutionary co-leadership conscious followership Take advantage of critical junctures to promote new options every hour, day, week, month, year Built and connect networks for empowering citizens Reflect on our own thinking habits and attitudes: are we agents of change? And what change? What else?
  32. 32. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement Thank you
  33. 33. The state of foresight in food and agriculture and the roads toward improvement What new planet? What else? People before product Sustainability before productivity Happiness before profit Equity before growth && & &

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