Partners in the SEED Project held their final partner meeting and peer review event in Ghent and Brussels on 7-9 September 2021.
The project welcomed more than 50 participants from across Europe to examine the outputs and activities of the project and help establish a plan for exploitation of the outcomes.
The exploitation plan was based on a workshop at the University of Ghent on September 8th 2021, carried out with more than 40 peer reviewers from across Europe.
The plan was developed to describe the activities that should be carried out to enhance the successful exploitation of the project results in terms of future development after the project has been completed. Exploitation planning usually involves the promotion and use of the products or processes and placing them on the market.
An introduction to the project was given by the project coordinator Altheo Valentini from Umbraflor. The partners from Belgium, Italy, Slovakia and Spain presented the impact of the project in their own institutions, regions and countries.
The Powerpoint slides are provided here.
The actions and outcomes of the SEED Project
Following this introduction, a peer review workshop activity took place where participants were invited to add their expertise to the project by answering the following four questions:
- In what areas should the SEED Project continue to make an impact?
- Who are the key stakeholders / targets to take forward the work of SEED?
- Which parts of the SEED outputs can most be used by others?
- How can we engage companies, training organisations and Ministries of education?
Based on this review an exploitation plan was presented at the final conference of SEED on September 9th 2021.
Members of the SEED project have created a report on “Elaboration of assessment standards for national and transnational work-based learning activities”. This provides valuable quality aspects developed through the use of the European Quality Assurance in Vocational Education and Training (EQAVET) framework.
EQAVET provides VET providers with a straightforward way to monitor and improve the quality of their provision. It is based on a four-stage cycle of planning, implementation, evaluation and review which is at the heart of many other quality assurance approaches.
Introducing quality assurance frameworks in work-based learning is a recent priority in vocational training. Countries at the early stages of developing their quality assurance practices can learn from the experiences of those who have already implemented consistent quality approaches.
The report describes how the Quality Assurance process can be established to set standards for mobility actions and assesses national and transnational work-based learning activities. This draft version will be reviewed during the third international peer-review in September 2021 by the members of the Advisory Board of the project.
A European Commission funded research study has examined sustainability of large scale intensive wheat farming and its impacts on the environment.
As intensive agriculture is associated with large-scale impacts on biodiversity, ecosystem services, food security and human health, it is important to shift to more sustainable, yet highly productive, farming practices.
The study assesses such practices in wheat, evaluating agricultural-management strategies at the field and landscape scales. The findings suggest that biodiversity-enhancing practices can support natural pest predation without use of agrochemicals — and that controlling pests and weeds by agrochemical means is less relevant than expected for final crop productivity.
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As part of a Green Recovery post-Covid, Governments have the opportunity to unleash innovation, undertake wider reaching and fundamental restructuring of certain sectors, accelerate existing environmental plans, and make use of environmentally sustainable project developments. The OECD has established a database of Green Recovery initiatives to share what is being done and provide examples of innovative actions.
The OECD Green Recovery Database contains information from national-level environmentally relevant measures, at the moment spread over 43 countries and the European Union. It covers a wide range of environmental impacts beyond energy and climate, including pollution (air, plastics), water, biodiversity, and waste management, many of which are related to agricultural practices.
The results so far indicate that there are insufficient green measures to enable the necessary transformation towards long-term climate and environmental objectives.
The database deals with measures specifically related to COVID-19 economic recovery efforts with clear positive, negative or “mixed” environmental impacts across one or several environmental categories. What role can the database play in supporting and enabling action?
Find out more – Read the OECD Policy Brief
Organisations like CarbonBrief are also monitoring the work of governments on their green recovery as countries look towards recovery as the pandemic’s impact starts to slowly recede. Visit their tracking of policies.
Based on the UN Decade of Action to deliver the Sustainable Development Goals, the United Nations have published a Research Roadmap for COVID-19 Recovery. It is important to note the extent to which science is being supported as part of recovery plans.
Partners in the SEED Project have developed and finalised the curriculum content for the Joint Qualification in Digital Farming. The results have been validated with national focus-groups and through international peer-review events. They are now published and available as a brand-new Curriculum mapped both on DigComp and EntreComp.
The curriculum can be used as a stand alone EQF5 qualifications profile in Digital Farming or as a modular and flexible VET course to update or integrate inside existing qualifications.
Download the curriculum below
Joint Curriculum in Digital Farming
Joint Curriculum (Dutch version)
Joint Curriculum (Slovak version)
Joint Curriculum (Spanish version)
Using huge amounts of data collected by all kinds of different sensors, Van den Borne potato farm manages to use the land more efficiently than most other potato farms. They know exactly which areas of soil need more nutrients, where pests are eating leaves, or which plants aren’t getting enough sunlight – and they are able to act accordingly. Van den Borne recently started their ‘own’ airport called Agri Drone Port Reusel to be able to legally fly the drones that they want to use for monitoring the approximately 450 ha farm.
The third-generation farm has become like a testing ground for technology that has been repurposed for use in agriculture. Because the company has become such an outspoken advocate for so-called precision farming, scientists and other agricultural innovators know who to reach out to when they have some cool idea they’d like to test.
Thanks to the sensors, and the stack of data analytics tools that are being used, the farmer can be exactly where he needs to be, when he needs to be there. And the best thing: He’s not afraid to share his knowledge. Jacob Van den Borne actually preaches the use of technology in agriculture – which is probably why some people call him ‘the pope of precision farming’!!
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