A Collaborative and Action-Oriented Learning Model

NEXTFOOD drives the crucial transition to more sustainable and competitive agrifood and forestry systems development by designing and implementing education and training systems to prepare budding or already practising professionals with competencies to push the green shift in our rapidly changing society. NEXTFOOD challenges the linear view of knowledge transfer as a top-down process from research to advice and practice, and support the transition to more learner-centric, participatory, action-based and action-oriented education and learning in agrifood and forestry systems.

In several pioneering case studies, covering agrifood and forestry systems in Europe, Asia and Africa, farmers solve real challenges related to sustainability together with researchers, students and other relevant stakeholders while developing both green technical skills and soft collaborative competencies.

NEXTFOOD assures quality in research and education by creating a peer-review system for evaluation of practice-oriented research outputs focusing on sustainability and practical usefulness. In addition, develops an international accreditation framework for education and training in fields relevant to sustainable agrifood and forestry systems.

An innovative action research process guides the NEXTFOOD project’s development in a cyclical manner, ensuring that the research process and actual case studies are ever-improving.

This exemplifies how practice-oriented research can be instrumental to achieve: better collaboration between university and society, more innovation in the agrifood and forestry systems sector, and a progressive agrifood community ready to tackle complex sustainability challenges of the 21st century.

The NextFOOD Objectives

NextFOOD objectives are to:

  • Create an inventory of the skills and competencies needed for a transition to more sustainable agriculture, forestry and associated bio-value chains,
  • Facilitate case studies to identify gaps and needs
  • Test new relevant curricula and training methods,
  • Identify policy instruments that support the transition towards action-, and practice-oriented learning methods,
  • Peer-review tools for evaluating the quality of the practice-oriented research,
  • Create a platform for knowledge sharing