Assessing Agroecological Vocational Training Approach Through the Eyes of Farmers
Keywords:agroecology, vocational training , farmers , practical feedback
Agroecology (AE) as a broad collection of good farming management practices, recognizes the impacts of agriculture on ecosystems and society. Even though AE does not have a specific certification method, its basic components can be identified at the farm level too. In the context of the trAEce project, research was conducted in order to investigate the concept of AE at the farm level. Furthermore, the topics that can be taught in the form of vocational training designed for farmers in connection with AE have also been identified. Accordingly, a 6-module training with 7 events was organized with the aim of testing the developed AE vocational training curriculum. The main target group of the training was conventional farmers who are committed to changing their farming methods and are open to agroecological solutions. The participants had opportunities to express their opinion about the training after each module day, and after completing the whole course. The analysis of the feedback questionnaires proved that the practice-oriented vocational training course that promotes well-established good practices combined with basic theoretical knowledge is considered an effective method to increase farmers’ knowledge about AE. The training helps conventional farmers in the transition towards AE contributing to the even more efficient use of EU subsidies.
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