JIS News

The advancement of regional agricultural sectors through the use of innovations in science and technology, is the main agenda item at the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) and National Commission on Science and Technology (NCST)-organised workshop, now underway at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in Kingston.
The workshop, which is being conducted under the theme: ‘Analyzing the Agricultural, Science, Technology and Innovation System,’ seeks to sensitize leaders in the agricultural sector in Caribbean countries, of the various innovations in science and technology, and how these can be applied to agriculture to boost economic development.
Marline Bardowell, Executive Director of the NCST, said that national research and development institutions were poorly linked to the productive sectors, which resulted in science and technology being insufficiently and inadequately linked to agriculture and other sectors.
She pointed out, that a strong system of innovations would enhance improvements in productivity in agriculture and spur growth in related agro-industries, to facilitate the necessary transformations to compete in national, regional and international markets.
Minister of Agriculture, Roger Clarke, in his remarks, hailed the organisers for linking the development of agriculture to science and technology. “In all of these developments and innovations, the NCST is playing a pivotal role in bringing about a sense of cohesion and co-ordination,” he stated.
Among the topics explored at the five-day workshop, which started on July 22 are: ‘Applying the Innovation System to Agriculture’; ‘Emerging Issues’; ‘Biotechnology as a tool in improving agricultural output’; and ‘Methodological framework for analyzing agriculture innovation systems in African Caribbean and Pacific countries’.
It is hoped that the workshop will result in an increased understanding of the nature of innovation and its evolution, the importance and relevance of the national innovation system in the agricultural sector, as well as the ability of participants from across the region to be able to contribute to improving learning and knowledge flows to enhance agriculture in their respective countries.