According to the project plan, in order to successfully carry out the piloting activities in the project, especially O4 and O5, it is necessary to provide the needed knowledge and skills for their implementation, to be able to ensure that the responsible experts of the partners will perform the planned tasks. Specialists assigned to the project from each target country have well established experience and expertise in the project's professional areas, however, for the specific tasks and roles to be performed, targeted training is organized.
For the facilitation of the progress in the design of the monitoring and assessment methodologies of the project in Slovakia, our partner from the Slovak University of Agriculture (SUA) organized an event participated by 3 advisors and 2 SUA staff in the office of the department, while the director and deputy director of Agroinstut, another farm advisor from Komarno and the coordinator connected online.
On the first day of summer 2021, the staff of the advisory network of Gazdakontroll, partner of the RAMONES project, as well as the representatives of the coordinator could meet again in a real farm environment - after many months of online captivity. The event was hosted by the Szomor Eco Farm, that is situated on the west side of the Kiskunság Puszta. Participants discussed about the methodology of monitoring and evaluation, and also to get prepared for the one year operational phase, when actually carrying out and testing the model.
The project partnership is working on an online tool, based on open source components, which will be tested during the pilot learning and certification programme. It aims at issue reporting, time tracking, progress monitoring, reporting etc purposes in rural advisory service provision. The technical description, the system configuration, extension(s) development as well as the structural setting up will be documented and shared with any potential advisory service providing organization across the EU, who is interested to implement a similar activity.
The consortium elaborated the main document of the first project output by the end of February 2021. The report “RAS dictionary of competences” presents the results of the output O1 - “RAS dictionary of competences”. A RAS competency dictionary is needed in order to pinpoint the competences requested to perform specific tasks, according to a set of capacities to be acquired at the level of the individual advisor and/or of an organization, i.e. teamwork; adaptability; communication, IT, management etc. and to define professional standards in the interest of all stakeholders.
The Ramones Farmers Survey was planned in order to discover what the clients of advisors find the most needed advisory services and what competences of the advisors they evaluate important. The project partners developed a questionnaire (consisting of 16 questions) and made it available in the six languages of the project partners in an online form. Through their network among farmers who utilize advisors, the partners disseminated the questionnaire. The survey ran between December 2020 and February 2021. 214 farmers responded to the questionnaire during this period.
Representative organisations of leading RAS providers gathered for joint discussions at the national level, in North-Macedonia, Slovakia and Hungary. The events were held online, due to the limitations of physical meetings during the period.
The main discussion points (see below) were provided in advance by the coordinator and the task leader GKO.
The information gathered from the interviews are incorporated in the main Output 1 Report.
Several RAMONES-PL project partners (CREA, LLKC) and experts are also team members of the i2connect : "Connecting advisers to boost interactive innovation in agriculture and forestry" project consortium, which is running in parallel in the next 2 years with our project. WP3 / Task 3.3 of the i2connect project aims especially to develop methods and tools for an "innovation friendly" management of advisory services.
RASP organisations are to be participating in the Case Study Analysis (CSA) in 3 target countries, for the validation of the professional business processes, and conducting the survey related to the most needed services and competences, as well as integrating the dictionary in the organizational policy.