The findings from the 27 country reports in the inventory of AKIS and advisory services were synthesised in two reports.
Synthesis report Vol 1 - creates an overview of the European AKIS as of 2013. Findings from the national reports were summarised and compared. The structure of final report is similar to that of the national reports:
- Characteristics of AKIS in the EU-27
- History of advisory services
- Characteristics of agricultural advisory services, including public policy, funding schemes and financing mechanisms; advisory methods and human resources; clients and topics; programming and planning of advisory work
- Characteristics of the Farm Advisory System (FAS) in the EU-27
The report highlights the great diversity of AKIS and advisory systems that exist in Europe; each country having developed a system that is adjusted to its particular situation, needs and actors. In most countries, the public sector functions as a supplier of information, advice and funding. Research and education actors (both private and public) create knowledge and innovation, provide education and – in many countries – also advisory services. The private sector is widely represented in AKIS, for example as many thousands of consultants that operate either independently (e.g. Italy) or as part of a larger advisory organisation (e.g. in Finland or Sweden).
There is a trend of decentralisation and fragmentation (vertical and horizontal) of advisory services (e.g. France, Greece, Portugal, Italy, Spain, Poland), partially as a result of commercialisation and privatisation of public organisations. This is coupled with an increasing competitiveness between suppliers of advisory services and overlapping activities, and the emergence of new providers such as NGOs and farmer-based organisations. In France, for example, farmer-based organisations such as chambers of agriculture play a significant role. In general, NGOs do not play a significant role in AKIS although in Poland, for example, there are over 10,000. We identified a lack of a coordination body in some countries (e.g. Poland, Greece, Portugal).
Synthesis report Vol 2 - is a much more detailed version of Vol 1, including more information on the main structural characteristics of the agricultural sector in the EU-27 with various comparative tables. Its final chapter is a compilation of the conclusion and recommendation sections from each country report.
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