Directions for Future Research and Innovation and Conclusion

Directions for Future Research and Innovation and Conclusion

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7934-2.ch007

Abstract

The agriculture sector appears to have more research than is actually utilized in a practical way. Most of the research and innovation fall in the domain of academia and consultancies and, by their very nature, do not address the main problem from the individual farm enterprise perspective. They tend to follow the sources of project funding channeled through agencies, departments, and ministries and, therefore, produced in favor of such organizations. The argument presented in this book for success in productivity and food security requires action research and innovation at the individual farm enterprise level. It is here proposed that action research is integral to innovation, and the major source of innovation ought to be around practical systems and activities on farms to make them successful. The theoretical transitional funnel model for farm sustainability offered in this book presents opportunities for testing, scaling-up, and replication of the diversified-integrated farm concept.
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Findings And Recommendations

The recommendations need not be extensive because of the extensiveness of issues and complexity of the phenomenon occurring in agriculture. The key is to simplify the issues and focus on the “root” cause and solutions. Agriculture tends to get attention and donor funding because of its very nature as the source of food and support to life, but this does not justify the tremendous funding but poor results. Instead, it is a sector that ought to be held accountable for results that is critically essential to health and wellbeing.

The significant findings and recommendations are:

There is ongoing and endless debate about the legacy of colonialism and stigma to agriculture. Now there is environmental degradation that is exacerbated by the effects of changing climate that adds to the already ailing sector. Food imports in the small island nations have been increasing, while food exports have been decreasing; some of the increase in imports is attributed to the growing tourism sector demanding more food products, but here lies an opportunity for farming to fulfill that additional need with produce and agro-tourism to enhance income of farmers. Diversification at the enterprise or micro level is different from diversification at the national or macro level; at the macro level it is generally higher due to the collective efforts of individual enterprises, but the performance of individual enterprises is what contributes collectively to national diversification.

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