Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Young global leaders to promote apps for rice farmers

The mobile version of the IRRI-developed tool,
Nutrient Manager for Rice
Twenty-four young professionals from 9 countries come together this week in Hong Kong to decide how to best promote mobile and web-based agricultural tools among farmers.

The participants of the 30th Global Young Leaders Programme (YLP), which starts on 14 January 2013, belong to 15 companies and organizations—a wide range of contexts that are expected to feed into an effective marketing plan for the new tools.

Specifically, their ideas will be used to help promote the use of Nutrient Manager for Rice—a mobile and web-based tool that gives farmers site-specific advice on fertilizer use—and to develop an integrated platform  that will connect various players in the rice supply chain and optimize rice productivity and returns.

NM Rice was developed by IRRI and has been promoted for farmers’ use in the Philippines, Indonesia, and Bangladesh.

“IRRI is excited to work with the participants, who represent the best of young entrepreneurs and business managers from across Asia,” said V. Bruce J. Tolentino, IRRI’s deputy director general for communication and partnerships. “We are eager to examine their proposals for business models for digital tools developed at IRRI and anticipate that these will greatly benefit rice farmers and countries in strengthening food security."

"We are also happy to partner in this innovative endeavor with the Global Institute For Tomorrow (GIFT) Hongkong,” Dr. Tolentino said.

During the YLP—which has the theme, Empowering rice farmers through mobile technology, the participants will spend a week on classroom-based sessions to discuss and debate issues pertaining to the roles of business, governments, and civil society; the  impacts of globalization; and Asia’s economic growth and increasing global presence.

The participants will then travel to the Philippines for a week as field exposure to some of the realities surrounding businesses. The group will meet stakeholders from corporate, government, and research sectors to consolidate their platform. 

The group's outputs will be translated into a business plan and strategic recommendations for corporate partnerships and will then be presented  at a culmination event to be held at the Asian Institute of Management (AIM) Conference Centre on 25 January.

“Through the program, the participants hope to provide IRRI with several new ideas for creating a blueprint for new business models to help link rice farmers and rice resources to commercial partners," said Eric Stryson, director of GIFT.  “The output of the program offers far-reaching social impact to both key stakeholders and regional farming communities at large.”

"We need to fuel that engine with innovations that will not only make the sector more competitive, but may also increase the number of jobs and returns to our farmers. Market-based innovations could be a game-changer in that respect,” said Ronald Mendoza, AIM policy center executive director.

“AIM is privileged to partner with IRRI. Innovation is what fueled our Asian neighbors’ economic rise; now, hopefully, it’s our turn,” he said.

The YLP is sponsored by GIFT, in partnership with IRRI and AIM.

Learn more about IRRI (www.irri.org) or follow us on the social media and networks (all links down the right column).

No comments:

Post a Comment