Dalija and I had a Skype meeting with Hanne and Herman last week. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the progress we have made since the Leuven training event at the end of February, and our plans for the remainder of 2018.
We told them about the workshop we organised at the end of April, where we discussed the possibility of adding our proposed tool to an existing online information repository, which was developed as part of a different project. We also noted that advisers in Latvia have a pronounced preference for face-to-face meetings. Furthermore, the participants indicated that technologically proficient farmers were open to using novel methods of instruction.
We also talked about our plans for the summer and early autumn. On the supply side, Dalija and I hope to come up with a list of advisers who would be willing to participate in the living lab.The plan is to engage up to 3-4 advisers per topic, though we realise that not all areas are well-covered, so choice will be limited on some topics. In addition, we hope to identify all published and online materials that provide information and/or advice in the field of agriculture. On the demand side, we intend to come up with list of issues and topics that are currently relevant to farmers and entrepreneurs. This list could be used when designing the platform and getting in touch with advisers.
On the whole, I think we are on the right track, but it remains to be seen how enthusiastic local professionals are about this kind of platform in the long run. It may seem like a good idea at first, but it all depends on whether the idea is good enough for people to keep putting the work in.