Padma Research and Development Organization is a youth organization initiating to build up an institutional process for scaling up agro entrepreneurship within the sphere of social entrepreneurship. In response to the gap between information haves and have nots in Bangladesh and in order to fill it, Padma proposes a digital revolution in southwest rural areas of the country. The originality of Padma’s activities resides in the use of knowledge brokering, a strategy to close the ‘know-do gap’. This interactive process relies on strong linkages with various agricultural actors that enable farmers at the grassroots to share information with national and global expertise. The knowledge provided responds to local farmers’ particular needs in an understandable local language. Also, local management system for crop security input & output (marketing). And finally give an institutional model of multi stakeholders participation for agri-entrepreneurship and capacity building of youth entrepreneurs as knowledge broker. (local content development, b2b ICT enable platform, scaling up local youth as knowledge broker)
Vision: Reduce digital division (gape between information haves and haves not) of rural farming households
Mission: Strengthen community feedback mechanism to develop and adapt relevant agriculture content for greater access and democratic digital dissemination (in local language and technically sound to community level).
• Strengthen the existing Knowledge Management process of Global knowledge accumulation and local issue based feedback through a backward-forward linkage with local farmer to global agri-researchers.
• To reduce the barriers of digital division trough a participatory management system for secure agriculture input & marketing (ICT enable networking & marketing platform)
• To bring the local entrepreneurs to an institutional shape through scale up and facilitating ICT accessibility (Complete a needs analysis of the region to identify gaps in ICT-enabled entrepreneurship and design culturally-appropriate training, Foster start-up of new businesses and/or growth of existing businesses through training by program participants and continued virtual mentoring from program team.)
1. Strengthen the system of re-directional information flows (a backward-forward linkage). This includes appropriate information for farming, crop selection, better technology, direction and communication with national & international agri-research institutes to make their research specific to the local content, which solving the agricultural problem of local farmers. 2. Barriers of digital division has minimized for management system of crop security at local level. a. Security of marketing and good selling prize of agri-products b. Security of timely & sufficient input supply such as credit, fertilizer, seeds, and fuel.`` 3. To bring the local entrepreneurs to an institutional shape through scale up and facilitating ICT accessibility from basic to advanced level.
Padma works directly with a group of educated young men and women from local farming communities who are deeply rooted in the community and highly accepted within their society as knowledge brokers. These brokers is to map community information and communication needs within their respective agricultural economic/social systems and assist to identify the key elements in that system to find information they need, when they need it, in accessible terms and language, and at prices that are realistic given available resources and sustainable development needs, to incorporate growth, equity, and environmental dimensions. Based on mapped information needs on the one hand and information suppliers on the other, an effective ICT strategy has designed based on the knowledge brokering approach: identifying who needs information, who can supply the information, what formatting and delivery mechanism will allow the knowledge provider and consumer to communicate and share information, and what institutional / market structure will provide the appropriate incentives for such sharing to take place.
Since the majority of women are farmers, this project will in particular focus on developing the skills of women entrepreneurs and help them understand and integrate technology solutions and related products or services to improve the efficiency and competitiveness of their day-to-day business processes. Technology literacy and knowledge will provide additional opportunities for women’s engagement as entrepreneurs through technology transfer and innovation. This project will address women’s increased use of ICT for entrepreneurship and business development, either directly or facilitated through knowledge brokers, by giving them concrete tools that can be applied to improve their livelihoods and lives.
n order to improved farming methods, increased yields and ultimately raising incomes for the farmers we have following products/ services: 1. Capacity building of youth entrepreneurs as knowledge broker Padma has involved a group of educated youth who are deeply rooted in the particular farming community. They are mapping out the information and communication needs of the farmers within their agricultural economic/social system and assisting them as knowledge brokers to find information they need, when they need it, in accessible terms and language, and at prices that are realistic given available resources and sustainable development needs, to incorporate growth, equity, and environmental dimensions.
2. Implementing and large scale and effective ICT strategy to broker agricultural information Through this system farmers will place their demands and the logistic providers (for exmaple seed producers) are able to make optimum supply in specific area based on the specific demand at a specific point of time. On the other hand for market security the farming community make agreement with the market committee and pre-sell their product. In this way they farmers get optimum prize value and marketing security.
3. Institutional model of multi stakeholders participation for agri - entrepreneurship
Bring the local entrepreneurs to an institutional shape through scale up and facilitating ICT accessibility (Complete a needs analysis of the region to identify gaps in ICT-enabled entrepreneurship and design culturally-appropriate training, Foster start-up of new businesses and/or growth of existing businesses through training by program participants and continued virtual mentoring from program team.)
Bangladesh is characterized as underdeveloped country where people are living much under the poverty line due to various mutually reinforcing causes like poverty livelihood insecurity inadaptation of modern technology Socio political unrest gender discrimination environmental degradation natural disasters Volume of the problem in some geographical areas are more acute The south west region of Bangladesh is one of the major disaster affected areas where the poverty level is high with other socio-economic problems as 80 population is dependent on the performance of agricultural production which is the most critical economic sector An ultimate target of this project is to eradicate poverty through a process of empowerment economic social and political
The social issue to be address: Income increase: this process will cut off the middle man and ensure optumum prize the farmers
Knowledge transfer: This process will establish a linkage with indigenous technology and modern science.
Employment for youth: Local youth will get the opportunity to work as knowledge broker.
Connecting farmers with the national instead of just local market
Enabling farmers to choose supply when they demand it
Enabling agro business to reach out to customers (farmers)
The Global Social Benefit Incubator (GSBI) 2010: (http://www.socialedge.org/features/gsbi ) The Global Social Benefit Incubator (GSBI) is the signature program of Santa Clara University's Center for Science, Technology and Society (CSTS). It works with social entrepreneurs to empower them and their organizations and to overcome barriers to scale and impact. Since 2003, 101 award-winning social enterprises have attended this program and become part of a growing network of path finding alumni for creating a more just and sustainable world.
Paragon Fellowship from Foundation For Youth Social Entrepreneurship (FYSE) 2009: www.faisal-bd.asia The Foundation For Youth Social Entrepreneurship (FYSE) inspires, invests in, incubates, accelerates and mentors high potential young social entrepreneurs in Asia Pacific to solve our most pressing social and environmental problems and to bring prosperity to the region.
Youth Social Enterprise Initiative YSEI fellowship 2006-07: (http://ysei.org/?q=node/42). Youth Social Enterprise Initiative (YSEI) is a high-engagement social venture program for emerging young social entrepreneurs in developing countries.
Through the Emergence Fellowship , YSEI aims to invest in young visionaries who have big ideas and who need crucial startup support to turn their ideas into action. The start-up support includes:
• Startup financing up to USD15,000
• Essential development knowledge & tools on social entrepreneurship
• Technical consulting through mentorship
• Access to diverse networks