August 31-September 21, 2021

Theme Four of the Global Agriculture Innovation Forum consists of three sessions focused on Innovations in Information and Communication Technologies. There are numerous examples of applications of ICT to agriculture and agricultural entrepreneurship. These applications are especially suitable to improve communication across the value chain, empower local actors to try new approaches, and engage youth entrepreneurs.

The three topical sessions feature 17 global thought leaders. Their ten-minute presentations are followed by 30 minutes of moderated questions and answers. Session themes address: (i) innovations in extension and advisory services; (ii) building smallholder resilience through ICT; and (iii) using ICT to promote connections within agricultural systems. A key takeaway from this series of sessions is that the rapid expansion of access to cell phones, especially smartphones, has opened up a world of business opportunities, especially in developing countries. Within agriculture, ICT applications can link producers with each other, with input providers (including extension and advisory services) and also link producers with actors across the market chain in new and more immediate ways. This offers opportunities to reduce risk and for empowerment to experiment with new approaches at relatively low cost.