Communities of practice (CoP) are fundamental tools to build resilience and increase knowledge sharing: this is how the ResAlliance project intends to use this potential.…
Despite the continued funding of scientific projects, new knowledge, innovative ideas and methods from practice are not sufficiently captured and spread. The research findings are often not integrated into agricultural and forestry practice.
Let’s imagine that there was no exchange of knowledge between countries. Every nation would be forced to reinvent the wheel, on its own, when someone, elsewhere, had already done so. You may think that this situation is not possible in the interconnected 21st century but, for some types of knowledge, this is still the case.
The publication and dissemination of scientific articles in scientific journals is a well-trodden path. A few global printing houses offer worldwide access to discoveries and innovations described according to scientific thinking, and in English: the global scientific language. However, knowledge and innovation do not belong exclusively to scientists. Thousands of practitioners, managers, policy makers or teachers innovate in their daily professional lives. With a bit of luck, these innovations are not only applied, but also published in a report or a factsheet, or conveyed to colleagues from the same region or country at technical conferences, field visits, or regional or national congresses (all in the local language). And they don’t go further, as in most cases their creators do not have the mandate to disseminate them internationally.
Have you ever thought about how the consumption of some of our favourite products can be linked to deforestation? Or how political decisions and policies can influence such linkages? The EU consumes significant amounts of products made from agricultural commodities, such as cocoa, palm oil, and soy, and the related agricultural expansion of these commodities causes vast forest loss in countries of production in Africa, Latin America, and Southeast Asia. Various trading companies operate supply chains across the globe and move the products to Europe for our consumption, making them important actors in controlling forest loss linked to agricultural products. In the coming years, new EU regulations will set increased obligations for traders in order to reduce EU market-driven forest loss. However, it is not sure how traders will react to the new regulations and how their decisions could influence the impact of the EU regulation to limit EU market-driven deforestation.