pesticide use inputs
challenge of agriculture
innovation plant (annual,perennial,...)
tropical and Mediterranean area
environmental footprint of farming
13 multidisciplinary research units
300 researchers and teacher-researchers
19 diploma courses
25 short training-education programmes
Expertise of the scientific community related to Agronomy - crops and cropping systems >Developping and disseminating innovations
Agronomy Research Expertise in Montpellier and Languedoc-Roussillon (South of France)
Agronomy : crops and cropping systems
5. Developing and disseminating innovations
In many situations, research and development stakeholders complain that farmers take little advantage of innovations developed by researchers in laboratories or research stations. There are several reasons for this nonadoption, which have been the focus of numerous intra- and inter-disciplinary studies for several decades. These studies have given rise to ‘farming systems research’ approaches, which stress the importance of identifying and understanding farmers’ rationales, strategies and practices prior to or at the same time as developing innovations for—and sometimes in collaboration with—farmers.
Many current projects are aimed at developing tools to support farmers in redesigning their production systems, while others seek to identify and assess public or private support measures that would be more efficient in creating an environment that is more conducive to the transformation of these systems. Modelling and simulation have a major role, even within stakeholders’ groups for negotiating types of changes to promote and ways to induce them.
- (i) to assess, within research units, invention and innovation development processes, and to improve design approaches and the type of technical references produced,
- (ii) with development and extension services, to study how stakeholders-experts responsible for disseminating knowledge are involved and communicate on available technical alternatives,
- (iii) to study how it would be possible to combine the knowledge of scientific experts and farmers so as to invent new systems that would be more readily adopted, and
- (iv) to introduce new ‘farming system research’ approaches by taking the multiple activities of farm households and risk (climatic, market, etc.) management into much greater account.
This work complements that of other disciplines (especially social and economic) on the question of the adoptability of innovations by farmers. They also help to change researchers’ approaches, to take the opinions of stakeholders other than public and private farmers into consideration in the analysis of processes, as well as everyone’s perception of their occupations and combined activities.
Agronomy research expertise
- Research projects
- Research units and teams involved
DMC techniques have mainly been adopted over the last three decades in South and North America and Australia, where they have emerged independently from national research and extension systems. These technical changes are harder to implement in developing countries because of the nature of most of their agricultural enterprises: small farms, subsistence strategies, (...)
Organic agriculture (OA) is an ideal framework for setting up more sustainable cropping systems, especially for viticultural systems in which pesticide treatments are substantially used. OA conversions are occurring at a fast pace in viticulture, especially in Mediterranean vineyards (+ 20% between 2006 and 2008 according to Agence Bio) even though the knowledge (...)
The improvement and stabilization of smallholders’ agricultural production are key challenges for international agronomic research. Soils in tropical environments are varied but fragile and the climatic conditions are harsh, with a high probability of catastrophic events occurring. Socioeconomic conditions for smallholders in such regions are also often difficult (...)
In tropical regions, vegetable crops are infested year-round by a broad range of pests. Farmers generally deal with this problem by spraying pesticides. Although farmers, through such unplanned and uncontrolled chemical treatments, may sometimes be able to turn a profit, the residues remaining on the vegetables are a threat to consumer health, and there is a (...)
In sub-Saharan savanna areas, the extension of technical innovations in different production sectors has shown its limits. It cannot, for instance, provide a solution to complex issues such as soil fertility management, crop-livestock integration, or changes in cropping patterns on farms.
In cotton-growing areas in Burkina Faso, CIRAD has developed (...)
Introduction of sanitizing plants in citrus orchards in the West Indies—an example of a participatory innovative cropping system design initiative
A participatory method for designing and assessing innovative cropping systems is currently being tested by the CIRAD HortSys research unit with the aim of reducing herbicide treatments in citrus cropping systems in the West Indies. The constraints of the current system were assessed and potential improvements determined with stakeholders. In response, different (...)This example was not published on the file in July 2010.
Participatory validation of innovative cropping systems—the Sustainable Banana Plan for Guadeloupe and Martinique
Highlighting the problem and issues
Cropping systems (CS) should be able to quickly integrate innovations that differ markedly from current practices with the aim of reducing input use and negative environmental impacts and addressing societal and regulatory changes. Developing new cropping systems is an innovation process in which the Banana, (...)
Problems associated with integrated production are especially marked in horticulture. This is an ideal field for designing innovative agricultural systems, which is a major methodological challenge facing agriculture today. The underlying scientific challenge is to clarify functional interactions between horticultural plants and pests under the influence of cropping (...)This example was not published on the file in July 2010.
Tree crops, and especially smallholder plantations, which account for over 80% of the natural rubber growing area, have a key role for development and sustainable reduction of poverty, which is especially high in rural areas. Research and extension are essential for improving soil productivity and labour conditions on family farms. After an assessment phase, (...)This example was not published on the file in July 2010.
Grass cover—sown or natural—in vineyards maintains the soil while also providing different services concerning viticultural production and its environmental impact. However, three problems hamper its adoption in Mediterranean regions: having two coexisting plant covers under limited water and nitrogen resource conditions, determining a management method that (...)This example was not published on the file in July 2010.
Research units and teams involved in "Developing and disseminating innovations"
|Click on the title to see the web site||Member institutes and partners||Scientists number||Director||Description|
| UMR INNOVATION
: Innovation and Development in Agriculture and the Agri-Food Sector
The processes through which agriculture adapts are founded on technical and organizational innovations, on both a collective and an individual level.
|Cirad, Inra, Montpellier SupAgro||46||Christophe Soulard||See the description|
| UMR SYSTEM
: Tropical and Mediterranean Cropping System Functioning and Management
The unit generates knowledge and tools for use in assessing, steering and developing cropping systems.
|Cirad, Inra, Montpellier SupAgro||16||Christian Gary||See the description|
| UPR HortSys
: Agroecological Functioning and Performances of Horticultural Cropping Systems
Inventing an ecologically intensive type of horticulture so as to feed people better: this is a wide-ranging mandate for the unit, whose main aim is to generate and capitalize on knowledge so as to assess and design sustainable horticultural cropping systems.
|Cirad||28||Eric Malézieux||See the description|
|UPR PSCPP : Performance of Tree Crop-Based Systems||Cirad||17||Eric Gohet||See the description|
| UPR SCA
: Annual Cropping Systems
In the light of the recent crises in terms of commodity prices, resource use and environmental management, it is now essential to find ways of producing that are not only efficient but also more ecofriendly, economical, varied and resilient, to ensure that farmers in developing countries live better in future.
|Cirad||51||Florent Maraux||See the description|
| UPR SIA
: Conservation Agriculture and Engineering
Formerly: SCV Direct Seeding and Cover Crops systems
|Cirad||13||Jean-Claude Legoupil||See the description|
| UPR SCBPA
: Banana, Plantain and Pineapple Cropping Systems
Although export fruit crops are a major source of jobs and currency, they are now often barely viable, in agronomic, economic or social terms. These fruit monocultures often cause pollution and impoverish the environment. The markets are increasingly competitive and consumers increasingly demanding.
|Cirad||19||Jean-Michel Risède||See the description|
|UR PSH : Horticultural Crops and Cropping Systems (in French)||Inra Avignon||27||Michel Génard||See the description|
The "Laboratoires d'excellence" (LabEx) selected by the Ministry of Education and Research "Agronomy and Sustainable Development" (Agro) is led by Agropolis Fondation and focuses on Plants of agronomic interest.
Information on Agropolis web site
Agropolis Fondation website
Agropolis International is responsible for the secretariat of the European Society for Agronomy
(ESA) for a two-year term
Information in the Agropolis International newsletter
ESA European Society for Agronomy website
Agroecology monthly cycle of seminars in Montpellier
Several joint agricultural research units in Montpellier from CIRAD, INRA, IRD and SupAgro have initiated a monthly cycle of seminars and debates, in partnership with Agropolis International, around Agroecology : ecological intensification of cropping systems.
See the page about the Agroecology monthly cycle of seminars in Montpellier, France
Update on 25/07/12
Extrait du site http://www.agropolis.fr/agronomy/ch5-developing-and-disseminating-innovations.php