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Provision of an agricultural advisory system for farmers in Palestine

UNDP / Palestine - Provision of a Palestinian Agricultural Advisory System (PAAS) for farmers in Palestine.

SDG 8 - Decent Work And Economic Growth
SDG 13 - Climate Action
SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption And Production
SDG 15 - Life On Land

Project Detail

Background

To strengthen the resilience of the agricultural sector, promote opportunities through introducing technological innovations, and build a network of Palestinian farmers, the Palestinian Government through its Ministry of Agriculture, with funding from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), sought to establish a Palestinian Agricultural Advisory System (PAAS).

Agronomists and big farm owners were constantly facing challenges with habitat and landscape management and conservation, soil and nutrient management, animal welfare, biodiversity, water pollution, and farm business efficiency. To provide sustainable support to these challenges, there was a need to gather accurate data for evidence-based development programs.

A successful pilot conducted in Jericho served as a precedent to build an agricultural advisory system for all Palestinian farms in the West Bank and Gaza. Collecting and analysing accurate data on agricultural businesses and farms inevitably resulted in a data-driven planning and policy department at the Ministry of Agriculture which put farmers first.


Solution

The design and development of the applications to support the Palestinian Agricultural Advisory System (PAAS) was contracted to Bewsys by the UNDP. In satisfying the requirements needed to create the PAAS system, the Bewsys consulting team assessed technologies and processes implemented at the farmer and Ministry level to identify the best system for the key stakeholders.

The team also conducted research to test the technical literacy and tech adoption of the farmers and sought to find the key priorities of the expected users (i.e. farmers, agronomists, NGOs, and policy-makers). Through this, the team was able to build a sustainable planning tool for the Ministry of Agriculture to access data on farmers’ holdings, field and vegetable crops, horticulture, and livestock. The PAAS system was built on the yield monitoring, field management, system administration, and report generation of the Bewsys A-MIS.

The PAAS was designed to feature a data entry function that could easily be navigated by extension workers, agronomists, and statisticians. To depict the location of agricultural holdings, the data entry function was designed to be linked to a mapping function. In the design process, a tablet/mobile application was considered to enable farmers to connect with other farmers and agronomists willing to share advice, solve problems, and share information for free. Also, the PAAS was designed to be a mobile application. In collaboration with Palestinian MOA, the PAAS system was piloted to ensure usability and feasibility before full scale-up and handover to the programmatic team.


Impact

The PAAS system has helped build networks among Palestinian farmers which has built comradery, solidarity, and resilience int he agricultural sector. Farmers have gained improved understanding about weather forecast data and requirements for water protection and efficient sustainable water use. Additionally, the support from agronomists, and NGOs in the sector has provided the farmers with help in areas related to risk management, appropriate preventive actions to address natural disasters, animal and plant diseases. Farmers can also now be compensated with damage protection services from the MoA.

With the introduction of the PAAS system in the Palestinian agricultural sector, the key stakeholders are benefiting from the government’s initiatives to promote climate action, decent work, preserve land, and encourage responsible consumption and production.  

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World Cocoa Foundation (WCF)

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Proforest

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USAID

The Bewsys team worked professionally on our assignment and sought to deliver our needs with great patience and creativity. They are reliable, competent and I recommend them for any assignment.Bewsys sure knows what it’s about. I’m particularly thrilled with the use of technology to accomplish tasks and also with the packaging of deliverables.

Chemonics

Very professional in their work, and client communication. I was really impressed with their ability to meet all their deliverable schedules, and above all submit a comprehensive user manual. Will recommend them to other projects.

UNDP Phillipines

Bewsys has been able to deliver what was expected based on the agreed timelines. The inception mission in the Philippines has been successful, and discussions with various stakeholders have been fruitful. Bewsys showed eagerness to know more about the unique requirements of the portal upon hearing it from firsthand users. They were able to accommodate various questions, comments, suggestions, and recommendations with different stakeholders, mostly from the government side, with each agency with unique requirements.

International Organisation for Migration (IOM)

Bewsys staff are results-oriented and adapted a lot of tasks, and were flexible to ensure the solution they provided was the best. A feather in their cap!

Association of African Universities

There is a great need for digital systems development in Africa. I think it will be essential to continue supporting institutions such as Bewsys so they can do these jobs better. Also, we need to think about solutions that can be deployed quickly to support other institutions where there is a match in need.