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Ms. Lucie Reynaud
General Coordinator – ASSET Project
Food and Rural Economy Department – GRET/Laos
reynaud@gret.org

Ms. Martina Spisiakova
Knowledge Management Coordinator
Overall guidance on the implementation of the Capacity Development and Communication Activities
APAARI
m.spisiakova@apaari.org

Dr. Sasireka Rajendran
Project Manager
Leader of sub-component Capacity Development and Communication Activities
APAARI
s.rajendran@apaari.org

Project Summary:

The Agroecology and Safe food System Transitions (ASSET) project is a regional project funded by the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the European Union (EU), and the Fonds Français pour l’Environnement Mondial (FFEM) over five years from 2020 to 2025 in four targeted countries: Cambodia, Laos PDR, Myanmar, and Vietnam. The project aims at developing and promoting a shared vision of the agroecological and safe food system transitions at South East Asian level. The project is coordinated by GRET in a strong articulation with CIRAD, in charge of the scientific coordination, the project will mobilize the expertise of 27 national, European and International partners, from research institutions, universities, NGOs, UN agencies, Ministries of Agriculture of the four countries. The project acts within the three overlapping spheres of influence, namely the societal sphere (citizen awareness and possible demands for safe agro-ecological products), the policy sphere (enabling environment at local, national and regional levels), and the technical and economic spheres (agroecological and safe food system innovations at territorial level in flagship sites).

Project website ASSET
Duration 2020 – 2025
Location Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam
Donors Agence Française de Développement (AFD) (French Development Agency)
European Union (EU)
Fonds Français pour l’Environnement Mondial (FFEM)
Budget 15 Million Euros

Overall Objective:

The overall objective is to make food and agricultural systems in Southeast Asia more sustainable, safer, and inclusive through harnessing the potential of agroecology to transform them. This will be achieved through synergizing initiatives contributing to ASSET from local to regional levels.

The project will build upon:

  • Research for development processes in synergy with the regional research platforms, ASEA and MALICA
  • The Agroecology Learning Alliance in Southeast Asia (ALiSEA)
  • The ASEAN Lao facilitated Initiative for a regional Coaching of Agroecological transition in South East Asia (LICA)

It will engage with governments, civil society and the private sector (including small producers) to generate and transform knowledge into sustainable innovation processes and transformative policies, sensitive to youth and gender equality.

To achieve this, the project pursues the following specific operational goals

Impact-oriented stakeholder engagement into agroecology and safe food system transitions

  • Strengthen ALiSEA through networking and sharing a common vision of the ASSET at national and regional levels
  • Transform ALiSEA multimedia into a Knowledge Hub that serves as a major resource at regional level
  • Raise awareness and build capacity through multimedia communication to a wide range of targeted audience

Scaling up agroecological and safe food innovations from local to regional levels

  • Co-design action research processes with local actors and support innovations at territorial level, considering youth and gender needs
  • Design a common broad-based methodological framework for assessing performances and impacts of ASSET pathways
  • Foster policy dialogues on agriculture, food, health and trade at national and regional levels

Partner’s Role:

Widely harnessing the potential of ASSET entails a broad-based capacity development and outreach processes toward raising awareness and actions to mobilize diverse stakeholder groups. These groups include farming communities, service and input suppliers and extension agents, as well as consumers and citizens to help shift agricultural and food practices, and demand for changes. They also include researchers, professors and students to revisit agricultural and food research agendas and university curricula. Policy makers are an important group to feed ASSET results into policy development. Finally, development practitioners need to adapt their support to innovation processes. Under this general ambition and with a gender and youth-sensitive approach, the project will implement specific activities, aligned with ALiSEA action plans and project needs, led by APAARI and ITC.

Working closely with all ASSET partners, APAARI’s key role in the project will be the coordination of the design and implementation of the ASSET communication and outreach strategy. This will include the development of various communication tools and processes to ensure wide-scale dissemination to promote exploitation of agroecological practices in Southeast Asia and beyond. With its regional focus, APAARI will facilitate participation of APAARI members in targeted knowledge-sharing and capacity development programmes of ASSET, and also participation of ASSET’s stakeholders in key APAARI-supported regional events of importance to the project.  It will also deliver a number of capacity development focused on development of functional capacities of ASSET partners and ALiSEA members, including face-to-face training and webinars. APAARI is also taking lead in the ASSET project website management and producing ASSET newsletter. Lastly, APAARI will participate in broad-based outreach processes focusing on raising awareness of policy makers to feed into policy development. It is envisioned that the partnership with regional partners, such as FAO and UNESCAP, will strengthen in this respect.

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