Climate-smart agriculture: Do young people care?
Climate change is an extremely urgent issue that must be addressed, especially in the agriculture sector. In 2014, the Philippines ranked ninth globally as most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change (Climate Change Commission 2014).
Central to addressing the impacts of climate change in agriculture is improving the ways by which information on climate-smart agriculture (CSA) reaches the farmers.
Presently, the extension system is fraught with several issues brought mainly by its devolution (Saliot 2014). Aging extension workers, mobility issues, among others make it difficult to have a seamless extension network in the country.
In 2014, the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) explored the possibility of mobilizing Technical Vocational high school students to serve as information providers of CSA. This was part of PhilRice’s Infomediary Campaign, which is a youth engagement initiative in agriculture. Towards an additional strategy in doing extension, the researchers looked into (1) evidence of searching and sharing information on rice by infomediaries, (2) the characteristics of infomediaries who are most likely to share information on rice to farmers, (3) the types of information that can be shared by the infomediaries, (4) the infomediation process that transpired in sharing information, and (5) evidence of use of information passed on in the process.