TECHCHANGE: Agriculture, Innovation, and Technology

Event Description: 

This four-week online certificate course will explore a number of design considerations and technologies to help make agricultural production increasingly accessible and affordable in the developing world. These include: digital financial services, SMS and IVR campaign tools, remote sensing technologies, mobile applications and services, drone surveillance, GIS data, and more.

Smallholder farmers make up over half of the world’s food-insecure populations in developing countries. These farmers face numerous challenges: decreasing land sizes, weather changes, inadequate access to equipment & resources, insufficient training, market volatility and more.

Across all four weeks, we will weave in several topics that go across the agriculture cycle, such as:

  • The trade-offs between different digital “channels” (e.g., mobile versus radio versus GIS) for different types of information and learning
  • The potential role of farmer profiling and its opportunities and challenges
  • The roles and challenges of using community or rural service agents
  • Terms such as “push” versus “pull”; direct to farmer or mediated
  • The role and capacity of local service providers, international ones, and mobile network operators
  • The role of government ministries
  • Gender and youth as factors in the design, rollout and scaling of digital services

The course will also consider a range of challenges to implementation like access to power, language barriers, literacy levels, high transactions costs, access to quality extension services and more.

Participants can expect a dynamic learning environment with a number of real-world case studies from countries like Mali and Kenya, custom animations and video tutorials, interactions with leading experts in the field and practical simulations to apply new skills and strategies.

Judy Payne, USAID’s ICT Advisor for Agriculture, has served as an advisor in the design of this course. She is also the Bureau of Food Security (BFS) lead for the Digital Development for Feed the Future Collaboration between the [lab] and BFS.

Location: ONLINE CERTIFICATE COURSE

Date: June 4, 2018 - June 29, 2018

For more information, click here.