Demonstration events in the study sites
|Main authors:||Jane Brandt, Giovanni Quaranta, Rosanna Salvia, Gottlieb Basch, Fernando Teixeira, Marie Wesselink, Julie Lemesle, Antonio Ferreira, Adelcia Viego, Jorge Mataix Solera, Fuensanta Garcia, Costas Kosmas, Orestis Kairis, Chrysa Aratzioglou, Matjaž Glavan, Zoltán Tóth, Olga Vizitiu, Irina Calciu, Jerzy Lipiec, Magdalena Frąc, Boguslaw Usowicz, Endla Reitam, Minggang Xu, Haimei Fu, Hongzhu Fan.
|iSQAPERiS Editor:||Jane Brandt|
|Source document:||Brandt, J. et al. (2020) Demonstration of recommended agricultural management practices and SQAPP in the iSQAPER study sites. iSQAPER Project Deliverable 6.4 (additional) 71 pp|
While there are some broad categories of agricultural management practices that protect soil from the main threats to its quality (such as prevention of erosion or maintenance of organic matter), the choice of which specific practice is most suitable for any particular location depends on a number of factors including climate zone, soil type, farming system and information available about the practice. Reliable knowledge and data help land users assess their soils and make well-informed decisions about its use. When information on alternative land use practices is easily available, it supports farmers in improving their land management.
iSQAPER's 14 study sites span 8 different pedo-climatic zones and 32 potential farming systems in Europe and China. Stakeholders in the study sites (farmers, technical advisors, researchers and policy makers) have been central to the research programme. In consultation with these stakeholders, a number of promising sustainable agricultural management practices have been identified and evaluated in field trials. The stakeholders have also been involved in the designing the functionality of SQAPP (the soil quality assessment app) and in evaluating it during its development.
In the final phase of iSQAPER, demonstrations events were organised in the all the study sites (with the exception of Zhifanggou Watershed) to:
- present the major research findings to stakeholders;
- demonstrate and discuss management practices of proven benefit to soil quality; and
- demonstrate and discuss the local soil quality assessment and additional recommended management practices provided by SQAPP.
Each of the case study sites organised their demonstration events to suit the local conditions (duration, location, number of people invited, a stand-alone event or in combination with another event). However, all events contain at least a common set of elements.
»Format of demonstration events
A total of 483 people participated in 11 events including representatives from all the target groups of stakeholders (farmers, advisors, suppliers, researchers, students, policy makers and administrators)
»Demonstration events: invitation, participants and AMPs demonstrated
Feedback was collected from some 220 of the participants regarding: the role they play in promoting and managing soil quality; evaluation of potentially effective agricultural management practices; and the design and evaluation of SQAPP.
»Feedback questionnaire results
The dissemination events were regarded as successful and effective by both the organising study site teams and those who attended.
»Evaluation of the demonstration events
In a final reflection, study site teams were asked if, taking account discussions with the stakeholders and feedback from the various research tasks and events in which they took part, they anticipated that the iSQAPER research programme could have a lasting legacy in their study sites. It was anticipated that the most visible impact would be in the areas of research results influencing farming practice and the uptake of recommended AMPs. The regular use of SQAPP would be less visible. It is less likely that new networks will be developed although new stakeholder types are likely to become involved in existing networks.
»Anticipated long-term impact of iSQAPER's research programme in the study sites