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Piccolo Mondo
Global impressions for a local picture
Curated by Victor LS
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Rescooped by Victor LS from Conservation Agriculture Recommended Research - August 2014 See our full research database for more CA articles
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2013 Report - Sustainable Intensification

2013 Report - Sustainable Intensification | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it

In short, Sustainable Intensification can be relevant as a new paradigm for African smallholder farmers as long as suitable, sufficient resources and practices are supported and delivered at scale. Often success can be achieved on a small scale – a plot or a farm – but often with only one or two of the economic, social and environmental objectives attained. The challenge lies in meeting all the objectives and in scaling up success to a regional or national production system.
African smallholders face many barriers to sustainably intensifying their incomes, their production and their nutrition, not least their physical access to the inputs of intensification, which may be limited for a variety of reasons. Land tenure must also be assured if smallholder farmers are to invest in Sustainable Intensification. Aside from security of rights to land, by women as well as men, intensification also requires a demand for the increased output, greater and more accessible financial investment (whether on a large scale or in the form of microcredit), available labour, better knowledge and skills and access to both input
and output markets. 
Although the concept of Sustainable Intensification is relatively simple, experience suggests it is difficult to achieve, especially in its entirety – namely, using a more sophisticated set of inputs of all kinds while increasing outputs. One such difficulty is the responsible and efficient use of inputs. For farms in the developed world this may mean a decrease in their application, but for many farmers in SSA, who use virtually none of these inputs, a prudent and precise increase in their use can intensify production without forfeiting resilience and sustainability.
The challenges are complex as are the technologies and processes required to find appropriate solutions. The paradigm of Sustainable Intensification shows the way forward. What is needed is research into appropriate innovations (technological and socio-economic), targeted financial investments and publicprivate partnerships, active participation in the process by smallholder famers and, above all, political leadership.


Via Cornell University Conservation Agriculture (soilhealth.org)
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Cornell University Conservation Agriculture (soilhealth.org)'s curator insight, August 4, 10:22 AM

Sustainable Intensification is the new name on the block and this paper does a good job of describing its meaning and use in Africa.

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How Barcelona and Philadelphia Are Turning Procurement Upside Down

How Barcelona and Philadelphia Are Turning Procurement Upside Down | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
These cities aren't telling contractors what they want to buy. They're laying out problems they want to fix.
Victor LS's insight:

Exciting trend. As it is often the case... BCN is rocking in innovation.

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The CGIAR: the most important international organisation you’ve never heard of?

The CGIAR: the most important international organisation you’ve never heard of? | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Victor LS's insight:

A quick overview about the CGIAR work.

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San Francisco Just Became the First Major U.S. City to Ban the Sale of Plastic Water Bottles - RYOT News

San Francisco Just Became the First Major U.S. City to Ban the Sale of Plastic Water Bottles - RYOT News | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
San Francisco just became the first major U.S. city to ban the sale of single-use water bottles.
Victor LS's insight:

SF, at the avant-garde once again... Good move.

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EU-US trade and investment talks: Why they matter

EU-US trade and investment talks: Why they matter | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Talks to free up more trade and investment between the European Union and the United States got under way early in 2013. A good agreement in 2014 would be...
Victor LS's insight:

if successfully concluded, TTIP would be the most significant bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) to date, covering approximately 50% of global output, almost 30% of world merchandise trade (including intra-EU trade, but excluding services trade) and 20% of global foreign direct investment (FDI).

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CGIAR doubles funding to $1 billion in five years / CGIAR

CGIAR doubles funding to $1 billion in five years / CGIAR | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
A Global Agricultural Research Partnership

Via Victor Kommerell
Victor LS's insight:

CGIAR hits major donor milestone.

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Victor Kommerell's curator insight, December 18, 2013 9:01 AM

Funding of CGIAR Research Programs has doubled to 1bn between 2008 and 2013 ...

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Hand Planter Could Save Time, Money for Small Farmers

Hand Planter Could Save Time, Money for Small Farmers | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Jelle Van Loon breaks tools for a living.

At the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center outside Mexico City, which is known by the Spanish acronym CIMMYT, the shaggy-sideburned enginee...

Via CIMMYT, Int.
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Nebraska Declaration on Conservation Agriculture signed

Nebraska Declaration on Conservation Agriculture signed | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
After months of discussions and debates on the scientific evidence regarding conservation agriculture for small-scale, resource-poor farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, a group of 40 scie...
Victor LS's insight:

According to the Declaration, most efforts to date in developing countries have promoted conservation agriculture as a package of three practices: minimum disturbance of soil, retention of sufficient crop residue, and diversified cropping patterns. However, the situation on the ground shows limits of this strict definition...
Emphasis needs to be placed on diagnostic agronomy and participatory on-farm research to identify the constraints faced by farmers and to guide farmers in finding solutions to them. As there is a range of sound agronomic, economic, and/or social reasons for choosing not to adopt the three-component conservation agriculture package, it is necessary to systematically assess the suitability and viability of management options and practices while considering farmers’ objectives and constraints, the Declaration stresses.

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World Wheat Market Fears GMO Contamination

World Wheat Market Fears GMO Contamination | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it

Nearly all U.S. grown corn and soy are genetically modified, so why not wheat?

The industry is certainly interested. In 2002, biotechnology giant Monsanto submitted an application for a wheat strain engineered with the same herbicide-resistant signature found in its other successful seed crops. Federal regulators deemed it safe, but unlike corn and soy, wheat growers backed away, and approval was never granted.


Via CIMMYT, Int.
Victor LS's insight:

About wheat and GMO...

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Howard G. Buffett: In Support of Conservation Agriculture for Smallholder Farmers

Victor LS's insight:

Howard G. Buffett recently published a great article about his view of conservation agriculture and its importance for the future in which he is addressing ten common myths of conservation agriculture when applied to smallholder farmers.

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What's so smart about climate smart agriculture? | CGIAR Climate

What's so smart about climate smart agriculture? | CGIAR Climate | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Victor LS's insight:

In a world where some countries will experience temperature peaks over 45-50°C, finding crops and vegetation that can deal with such heat stress will be a struggle. There may in fact be a limit to how much we’ll be able to adapt. But there are things we can do that make us armed enough to tackle the climate challenge. One of these things is looking at what climate smart agriculture can offer smallholder farmers.

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Educational Technology and Mobile Learning: 12 Fabulous Academic Search Engines

Educational Technology and Mobile Learning: 12 Fabulous Academic Search Engines | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it

Via Susan Bainbridge
Victor LS's insight:

An interesting list of academic search engines!Bookmark them!

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Andrea Ange's curator insight, February 8, 2013 5:04 AM

If we are going to advance media literacy, we need to advance the way our students perceive information! Thanks Pam!

Jan MacWatters's curator insight, February 16, 2013 9:35 AM

The mobile world is expanding. This is good to have information.

Philippe Trebaul's curator insight, February 18, 2013 6:17 AM
Technologie de l'éducation et de l'apprentissage mobile: 12 Fabulous moteurs de recherche universitaires.

De www.educatorstechnology.com -Février 5, 00:16


Educational Technology and Mobile Learning: 12 Fabulous Academic Search Engines via @eddebainbridge http://sco.lt/...

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What we can learn from Mexico

What we can learn from Mexico | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it

Earlier this month, the president told a newspaper the solution to partisanship is politics and more politics.


Via Seth Dixon
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Erica Tommarello's curator insight, September 24, 2013 7:21 PM

It is very impressive how far Mexico has come in what seems like such little time. I am very interested to see if there will be a great influx of American immigration into Mexico in the coming years. It is also interesting to think about NAFTA in this situation: so beneficial to Mexico; will this become a problem for the US? 

Marissa Roy's curator insight, October 23, 2013 9:46 AM

This article is particularly interesting. It is so common to hear about the drug wars going on in Mexico, but much less common to hear how the country is doing economically. It makes sense that their economy is growing, as the United States imports many goods and products from across the border. This goes hand in hand with how the Mexican government also pays their workers more than most Chinese workers recieve. Mostly it is their geographic location to the United States that is making their economy grow.

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, February 4, 9:22 AM

The future of Mexico is starting to look better and better as President Enrique Pena Nieto increases taxes, competition and takes on the teachers’ unions. With these reforms, Nieto is looking to build a better Mexico and succeed other surrounding countries.

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Why do competitors open their stores next to one another?

 

"Why are all the gas stations, cafes and restaurants in one crowded spot? As two competitive cousins vie for ice-cream-selling domination on one small beach, discover how game theory and the Nash Equilibrium inform these retail hotspots."


Via Seth Dixon
Victor LS's insight:

A good market lesson brilliantly explained!

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Nancy Watson's curator insight, July 25, 7:02 AM

Hoteling model

MsPerry's curator insight, August 12, 3:56 PM

APHG-U6

CT Blake's curator insight, August 29, 5:03 PM

For use in understanding the placement of businesses in Human Geography.

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Differences between organic and non-organic food

Differences between organic and non-organic food | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Research is first to find wide-ranging differences between organic and conventional fruits, vegetables and cereals
Victor LS's insight:

Is it the case for cerals as well?

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FAO initiative brings global land cover data under one roof for the first time

FAO initiative brings global land cover data under one roof for the first time | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
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FAO´s new database, claimed to be the most-reliable global view of planetary land cover assembled to-date.

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Tesla expands Supercharger network in Europe

Tesla expands Supercharger network in Europe | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Tesla says you can now take a Model S from Amsterdam to the Alps using new and free Supercharger stations.
Victor LS's insight:

Tesla is proposing a no-expenditure model after you purchase your car. Its network of free charge stations is already set in the US and about to expand in Europe. Brave strategy!

more info at: http://www.dailyfinance.com/2014/01/20/ready-or-not-tesla-is-expanding-across-the-globe/

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Is solar-powered desalination ready to take off?

Is solar-powered desalination ready to take off? | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
From Isle of Man to Saudi Arabia, renewable desalination is gaining interest around the world as solution to water scarcity and food crisis
Victor LS's insight:

Renewable desalinization has direct and tremendous impact implications for sustainable agriculture and from a climate-change perspective.

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40 more maps that explain the world

40 more maps that explain the world | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
I've searched wide and far for maps that can reveal and surprise and inform in ways that the daily headlines might not.
Victor LS's insight:

Yet another good collection of them... #maps

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Chinese machines help turn trash into treasure

Chinese machines help turn trash into treasure | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
The Beijing Subway's Line 10 will soon have reverse vending machines, which will pay customers for their empty plastic bottles.
Victor LS's insight:

A eco and smart action by the Beijing Subway.

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China’s Great Uprooting: Moving 250 Million Into Cities

China’s Great Uprooting: Moving 250 Million Into Cities | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
A 12-year plan to move hundreds of millions of rural residents into cities is intended to spur economic growth, but could have unintended consequences, skeptics warn.
Victor LS's insight:

"The ultimate goal of the government’s modernization plan is to fully integrate 70 percent of the country’s population, or roughly 900 million people, into city living by 2025"

 

Well, this is a risky plan. On one side we have the fact that social benefits do not reach rural areas what causes the feeling that to give more appropriate attention to the population, moving to the cities is the solution. On the other side, implementing this forced migration does not sound as a natural consequence of development. Risks include marginalization, food insecurity, gentrification or uncontrolled land grabbing.


It is interesting to notice that most of the so-called developing countries -or economies in transition- bet for urbanization strategies while there is a minor but growing trend across the so-called developed countries to move back to the farms (this is a private decision as opposed to the earlier)...

 

What is your view?

 

Let´s hope for the best!

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Can Asia Urbanize Without Starving?

Can Asia Urbanize Without Starving? | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Demand for food is set to surge within the region. Can productivity growth keep pace?
Victor LS's insight:

Economic growth in Asia has already increased demand for higher protein and more diverse diets, including more dairy, fish and meat.  higher levels of urbanization are only expected to exacerbate this trend further.

By 2025, nearly 2.5 billion people in Asia– over half of the world’s urban population – are expected to be living in cities,  with the number rising to 3.3 billion by 2050...

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FAO praises trend toward small-scale local food production

FAO praises trend toward small-scale local food production | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Victor LS's insight:

FAO makes a strong statement towards blending small/scale local food and large production for food security purposes. Each of them has its own purpose, value and beneficiaries. This is a great statement to support and ease the understanding of both systems coexistence.

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Tycoons Carlos Slim and Bill Gates support CIMMYT´s agricultural research and development projects

Tycoons Carlos Slim and Bill Gates support CIMMYT´s agricultural research and development projects | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
TEXCOCO (Reuters) - Carlos Slim and Bill Gates, the two richest men on the planet, inaugurated a new agricultural research center outside Mexico's capital, touting the millions they have donated to bolster...
Victor LS's insight:

Bill Gates pledged some 18 million USD to help expanding the Masagro programme beyond. Learn more about this project activites in Mexico at: http://www.cimmyt.org/what-we-do/projects-by-region/modernizacion-sustentable-de-la-agricultura-tradicional?lang=en-GB

 

Visit CIMMYT´s website for more information on this organization: http://www.cimmyt.org

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Mapping Mexico's gang violence

Mapping Mexico's gang violence | Piccolo Mondo | Scoop.it
Voters are counting on the next president to find a solution to the country's alarming rise in organised crime.

 

This interactive features shows temporal and spatial data on drug-related deaths in Mexico since 2007.  Also connected are profiles of the presidential candidates of the three major political parties (PRI, PAN and PRD) and with their platform on drugs and ways to curtail the accompanying violence.  Mexico's presidents can only hold office for one term, but it is a six-year term...2012 isn't just about Obama and Romney. 


Via Seth Dixon
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Sam Henry's comment, August 27, 2012 8:01 AM
I would be interested to see how the newly elected official will use this map and what their changes in the current approach will be