The final significant milestone for FASTER’s Living Lab dynamics is the organisation of all the information produced by participants into a ready to use format. Indeed, the publication of the new “Atlas for Adaptation to Climate Change in Tunisian Agriculture. FASTER FAS Living Lab co-designed proposals.”
This step is the culmination of the Living Lab process. It provides an overview of innovative solutions to climate change adaptation in the fields of water, soil and forest management, fishery and crop production. These proposals were obtained through a collaborative process that integrated the latest research results and experience-based information. The Atlas includes tailored-made factsheets that address both FAS agents and decision-makers with the aim to boost the impact and implementation of this knowledge, especially in rural areas.
Additionally, to strengthen FAS as a tool for adaptation in Tunisia, a specific Communication Strategy ensured the endorsement of FAS agents to deliver these innovative solutions to farmers in North-West Tunisia. Likewise, FASTER project sustainability efforts ensure the solution’s reception by public administration and critical entities.
The “Atlas for Adaptation to Climate Change in Tunisian Agriculture . FASTER FAS Living Lab co-designed proposals” is now available on the FASTER website to anyone interested in promoting innovative solutions in the agriculture sector and making Tunisia less vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.
Click the image to download the English version
Want to know more about the previous steps of the Living Lab dynamics?
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About the FASTER’s Living Lab Dynamics
The objective of the FASTER project was to support the Farm Advisory System in Tunisia by enhancing knowledge sharing on innovative solutions and best practices to adapt to climate change, established through mainstreaming research results into real-world settings in the forestry and agricultural sectors.
FASTER promoted an open innovation approach by creating a Living Lab to meet its objectives. The dynamics engaged a multi-stakeholder platform, inviting more than 250 researchers, experts, practitioners, professional organisations, NGOs and public administration to share their knowledge in a co-production process.
Participants organised in thematic groups working in a multi-disciplinary environment and collaborated to merge research results and experience-based knowledge into concrete factsheets.
What activities were developed as part of the Living Lab?
- Designing factsheets on different topics related to climate change adaptation in water, soil and forest management, fishery and crop production.
- Training for FAS Agents on climate change adaptation measures through a summer school program in May 2021
- Disseminating the knowledge contained in the factsheets with farmers and people interested in applying the sustainable solutions
- Field visits to innovation prone farmers to share knowledge on adaptation measures and how they deal with the impacts of climate change
FASTER project’s partners promote the Living Lab process, both from Tunisian research institutions -INRGREF, AVFA, IRESA- and European partners -CREAF, Lund University, Vision and Europe for Business. A wide variety of entities were invited to engage in the co-production process of information, involving, for example, local entities such as CRDA Bizerte, CRDA Béja, CRDA Jendouba, ODESYPANO, CRRGCB, ESIM, ISPT, INGC, ISA Kef, UJ, CFPA Rimel, OEP Mateur, OEP Béja, OEP Kef, INM Tabarka, UCPA Gnadil Béja, Lycée Thibar, OTD & Cave de Thibar; central entities, such as DGACTA, DGF, DGBGTH, BPEH, INRAT, ICARDA, OEP Tunis, INAT, ENIT, SEC-ADENORD, MALE, PC, CERTE, IHEC, FST; Regional entities such as INSTM, ISA CHM, IRA Mednine, CRDA Nabeul, CRDA
Zaghouan, DRE Gabes, as well as associations related to the agricultural sector, such as:
GDA el Braka – Tbeina, AED, Synagri, APEL Nefza.
How was the Living Lab created?
Step 1: Identification of Living Lab leaders and participants
At first, potentially interested participants of the Living Lab process were identified and included in a multi-stakeholder platform. The FASTER project coordinator INRGREF organised introductory information and consultation workshops. These workshops allowed the participants to immerse themselves in the context of the project and discuss possible collaborations and engagement in FASTER activities by exchanging their needs and expectations. It was also the occasion to identify challenges and main issues at stake related to adaptation to climate change in the fields of water, soil and forest management, fishery, and crop production.
Following this workshop, FASTER organised meetings to build the Living Lab topic groups, identifying the different working groups for each field of interest and spot the missing actors for establishing the multi-profile environment of the Living Lab. Participants’ detailed contributions helped design the process and enabled the elaboration of the FASTER Living Lab protocol and calendar of activities.
After gathering knowledge and exchanging views during various interactive sessions, FASTER officially launched its Living Lab in October 2019. The FASTER project team identified Lab leaders and capacitated them to manage the different stages of the co-creation process, the tools and methods proposed, and provide an overall implementation roadmap.
Step 2: Preparatory meetings
AVFA, IRESA and INRGREF organised a meeting to inform decision-makers and relevant stakeholders about the living lab process, raising the interest in future activities. Additionally, a preparatory meeting with more than 100 participants helped to consolidate the whole Living Lab process, the objectives and the expected results, including an in-depth capacitation workshop to co-produce the FAS Living Lab factsheets.
Moreover, Covid-19 forced FASTER’s partners to adapt the Living Lab events and to activate a contingency plan. The latter converts part of the methodology of the living lab to use virtual solutions. The contingency plan established the anticipated activation of the project’s E-Learning platform ensured by Europe for Business to connect all the Living Lab actors. Through a personal account, the participant of the Living Lab could access a collaborative area to interact, share activities, documents and work with other participants and international project partners. Europe for Business created a helpdesk to assist participants in accessing and comfortably using the virtual platform. Moreover, specific audiovisual material was designed by CREAF and Vision Communication to guide the factsheets co-creation, sustaining self-organisation for the drafting process by all topic groups.
Step 3 Co-design Workshops
The next step included an online workshop called “Creation of a Living Lab working groups kick-off.” Its objective was to boost the process by updating the lab leaders about the Living Lab implementation approach, the main features fostering virtual collaborative work, its calendar and the steps ahead. Following the workshop, each Living Lab working group was able to continue the drafting process of their factsheets with the support and guidance of the FASTER Living Lab Committee.
Subsequently, FASTER was able to hold two face-to-face workshops in Tabarka. Thanks to the efforts of Tunisian partners (AVFA, INRGREF and IRESA). The event hosted 15 thematic groups and engaged more than 60 people per day. Participants joined efforts to finalise the advanced factsheets, considering the different targeted stakeholders that benefit from the proposed solutions, including relevant literature and examples from the field. The participants produced over 50 drafts of factsheets on the areas of Crop Production, Fishery, Soil Management, Water Management and Forest Management.
Step 4 Factsheets finalisation
The consortium organised online follow-up sessions to solve practical and technical doubts and finetune the factsheets. During these sessions, the thematic group leaders interacted and exchanged knowledge and progress with FASTER partners (CREAF, Lund University, INRGREF, Europe for Business and Vision Communication). The drafts were revised and passed a first quality check in terms of format, language and structure. Finally, the project partners established an interactive process with authors to apply the contributions received.
Step 5 Factsheets validation
The Living Lab groups refined the information obtained to close the editing of their factsheets, and the FASTER Living Lab Committee validated all the information included.
Step 6 Factsheets Presentation
FASTER’s Summer School was the occasion to present an initial set of FAS Living Lab factsheets. The authors exchanged their knowledge and good practices with various influential researchers, experts, farm advisory agents, and Tunisian professionals from the agricultural sector. The consortium gathered the feedback from the participants and the comments from the invited experts to translate them into an updated version of the factsheets. All of these are now published in the “Atlas for Adaptation to Climate Change in Tunisian Agriculture. FASTER FAS Living Lab co-designed proposals.”
Step 7 Factsheets Dissemination
In order to reach the target audience, namely the farmers and the decision-makers, FASTER partners designed a specific FAS Communication Strategy. The efforts focused on improving the communication skills of FAS agents towards farmers and providing support for implementing the suggestions promoting adaptation to climate change. The strategy hinges on three key phases:
- Instruction (May – Mid-July): Training the FAS Agents on how to improve their communication skills to transmit the factsheets’ content to the farmers.
- Implementation (Mid-July – Mid-September): Applying FAS Agents’ communication efforts using the tools developed.
- Evaluation (End September – Beginning October): Assessing implemented actions and further coaching.
Finally, following FASTER’s Summer School, on July 2021, all the factsheets have been included in the “Atlas for Adaptation to Climate Change in Tunisian Agriculture. FASTER FAS Living Lab co-designed proposals” This document aims to reach a broader audience in the region, including academia, practitioners and decision-makers, ensuring impact on the adaptation capacity of the agriculture sector in Northwest Tunisia.
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