08 July 2007

Innovative rural information practices in Asia and the Pacific

FAO Bangkok recently published the report of an expert meeting in 2005 to advance knowledge about the use of ICTs for agricultural development and rural poverty reduction in Asia and the Pacific. The report gives an account of the presentations and discussions as well as of the recommendations.

A particularly rich element of the report is the synthesis of different sessions and the various presentations:

The keynotes on various aspects of ICT: “ICT in rural development in Asia: new learning and extension opportunities”; and “Strengthening partnerships and participation in rural information networks”.

Session 1 on innovative practices for access and empowerment: “ICTs for promoting gender equality and the advancement of rural women”; and “ICT for grassroots innovation against poverty” (Thailand).

Session 2 on innovative practices for farmers: “The Philippine Farmers’ Information and Technology Services”; “Some initiatives to reduce the digital divide for the rural community in Malaysia”; and “Improving rural dissemination systems in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic”.

Session 3 on innovative practices for rural communities: “ICT in agriculture development in Bhutan”; “Information and communication technology for rural livelihoods in Baan Samkha Thailand”; and “Cyber extension: innovative uses of ICT for agriculture – Case studies from India”.

Session 4 on innovative practices for extension: “ICT application in rural Iran: perspectives and operations of the extension system”; “Digital Extension: an alternative strategy for network extension” (Sri Lanka); and “Selected success stories on agricultural research information systems for rural development in the Asia-Pacific Region”.

Session 5 on innovative practices for education: “ICT and rural development: experiences in China”; and “ICT for open and distance learning: basic principles and best practices in Asia and the Pacific”.

Session 6 on innovative practices for networks: “Networks for lifelong learning and rural poverty reduction in Asia; and “Sustainable rural networking in the Solomon Islands”.

Session 7 on Innovative practices for supporting national development: "Information service practices in rural China”; and “Best ICT infrastructure for the South Pacific countries – USPNet”.


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