Workshop on Agri-Food System Innovation: Reframing the Conversation

Workshop background

The workshop forms part of a wider on-going collaboration between the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the Secretariat of the Independent Science and Partnership and Council (ISPC) of the CGIAR, to explore the nature of agri-food system innovation, the role of research within this, and the way different types of innovation processes lead to impact.

The initiative aims to support a wider collaborative process to assist in the development and application of explanatory principles, guidance, and tools to improve the impact effectiveness of investments in agri-food system innovation.

Workshop objectives

Following the key outcomes from a workshop held on the 14-15 December 2016 in Canberra, Australia, the initiative has continued its campaign along two tracks: The first is building up case studies of how innovation leads to impact at different scales, the second a set of thematic studies on different LOCK-INs. The case studies are to illustrate how innovation really happens and to inform the overarching narrative of the change process. The thematic studies on LOCK-INs aim to change the frames of reference of the conversations around the topic that are currently stuck in dead ends and blocking the emergence of other pathways and perspectives.

The current workshop, scheduled for 28 and 29 June 2017, will present a nascent White paper that resets the meta-narrative on Agri-food System Innovation, and subsequently stress-test this reframing against the key propositions emerging from the campaign's case studies. In addition, an in-depth reflection on some of the major LOCK-INS will target to shape the scope and nature of the further research and analyses that the initiative should pursue in this realm. Finally, the development of a format to solicit diverse perspective on the White paper and their subsequent documentation in a compendium publication, aims to escalate the initiative’s campaign to reframe the common narratives that inform strategic choices in agri-food system investment through the wider engagement of global thought leaders and opinion makers.

Read workshop report here.