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THE GLOBAL FARMER FIELD SCHOOL PLATFORM
DGROUP
Supporting quality
FFS globally
Suzanne Phillips
FFS team
FAO
Dgroups: Simple solutions for
building online communities
Webinar, 22 March 2018
Context: The Farmer Field School (FFS)
approach
• 15-25 farmers/pastoralists meet together over crop or animal cycle
• Setup study and experimental fields – ‘the field is the book’
• Learn and experiment about ecology and field management
• Uses non-formal adult education approaches, learning by doing
Since its development by FAO
in 1989 in Indonesia,
the approach was adapted to
different production systems,
regions and organisations.
About 10-20 million
smallholders had been trained
through FFS up till 2012, with
FFS initiatives in at least 90
countries
Context: The Global FFS Platform
A global FFS platform to:
• Facilitate exchange of knowledge,
expertise and information
• Document and improve visibility of
achievements globally
• Promote quality of FFS through
harmonization, collaboration among
teams, develop key tools and studies
Suzanne Phillips
FAO
Rome
22 March 2018
❖ How to facilitate the implementation of good quality
innovative FFS?
❖ How to support the growing global FFS community?
The global FFS platform
A collaborative multi-stakeholder effort
The FFS platform website was developed and is facilitated by:
 FAO’s crop production and protection division,
▪ Many FAO divisions, regional and national offices
▪ A network of FFS partners
▪ FFS practitioners worldwide
Suzanne Phillips
FAO
Rome
22 March 2018
Issue at stake: How to connect the FFS community
of practice?
Suzanne Phillips
FAO
• FFS website makes
documentation, news and expertise
available
• BUT practitioners need a space to
discuss issues and share
questions, innovations and
successes
• Inclusiveness: everyone should be
able to contribute
• no matter how far, where they
work, independently of quality of
internet connection and IT skills…
Rome
22 March 2018
How we used Dgroups: the global FFS email-
discussion group https://dgroups.org/fao/fieldschools
Topics discussed: climate change
adaptation, institutionalization, IPM,
livestock, post disaster risk reduction;
exchange of training material ..
FFS Dgroup = Parallel platform for discussions amongst FFS
practitioners
Over the past 14 months…
1000 members
106 countries
174+ discussions
790+ contributions
Upcoming webinars
• Livestock FS
• Gender and FS
• Fisheries FS
Rome
22 March 2018
Suzanne Phillips
FAO
Using Dgroups: we would recommend it!
The Dgroup has allowed us to connect
a global community of FFS
practitioners.
We would recommend as it is:
✓ free of charge for end users
✓ easy to use even if have low IT-
literacy
✓ email-based, to overcome poor
internet connection and reduce the
time needed for exchanges (no
passwords, navigating to website…).
✓ easy to moderate (admins’
viewpoint)
Suzanne Phillips
FAO
http://www.fao.org/farmer-field-schools/en/
THANK YOU !
Suzanne.phillips@fao.org
Dgroups: simple
solutions for building
online communities
Webinar
22 March 2018
dg-coordination@dgroups.org
www.dgroups.info

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The Global Farmer Field School Platform Dgroups

  • 1. THE GLOBAL FARMER FIELD SCHOOL PLATFORM DGROUP Supporting quality FFS globally Suzanne Phillips FFS team FAO Dgroups: Simple solutions for building online communities Webinar, 22 March 2018
  • 2. Context: The Farmer Field School (FFS) approach • 15-25 farmers/pastoralists meet together over crop or animal cycle • Setup study and experimental fields – ‘the field is the book’ • Learn and experiment about ecology and field management • Uses non-formal adult education approaches, learning by doing Since its development by FAO in 1989 in Indonesia, the approach was adapted to different production systems, regions and organisations. About 10-20 million smallholders had been trained through FFS up till 2012, with FFS initiatives in at least 90 countries
  • 3. Context: The Global FFS Platform A global FFS platform to: • Facilitate exchange of knowledge, expertise and information • Document and improve visibility of achievements globally • Promote quality of FFS through harmonization, collaboration among teams, develop key tools and studies Suzanne Phillips FAO Rome 22 March 2018 ❖ How to facilitate the implementation of good quality innovative FFS? ❖ How to support the growing global FFS community?
  • 4. The global FFS platform A collaborative multi-stakeholder effort The FFS platform website was developed and is facilitated by:  FAO’s crop production and protection division, ▪ Many FAO divisions, regional and national offices ▪ A network of FFS partners ▪ FFS practitioners worldwide Suzanne Phillips FAO Rome 22 March 2018
  • 5. Issue at stake: How to connect the FFS community of practice? Suzanne Phillips FAO • FFS website makes documentation, news and expertise available • BUT practitioners need a space to discuss issues and share questions, innovations and successes • Inclusiveness: everyone should be able to contribute • no matter how far, where they work, independently of quality of internet connection and IT skills… Rome 22 March 2018
  • 6. How we used Dgroups: the global FFS email- discussion group https://dgroups.org/fao/fieldschools Topics discussed: climate change adaptation, institutionalization, IPM, livestock, post disaster risk reduction; exchange of training material .. FFS Dgroup = Parallel platform for discussions amongst FFS practitioners Over the past 14 months… 1000 members 106 countries 174+ discussions 790+ contributions Upcoming webinars • Livestock FS • Gender and FS • Fisheries FS Rome 22 March 2018 Suzanne Phillips FAO
  • 7. Using Dgroups: we would recommend it! The Dgroup has allowed us to connect a global community of FFS practitioners. We would recommend as it is: ✓ free of charge for end users ✓ easy to use even if have low IT- literacy ✓ email-based, to overcome poor internet connection and reduce the time needed for exchanges (no passwords, navigating to website…). ✓ easy to moderate (admins’ viewpoint) Suzanne Phillips FAO
  • 9. Dgroups: simple solutions for building online communities Webinar 22 March 2018 dg-coordination@dgroups.org www.dgroups.info