With the coronavirus resulting in an almost global lockdown, Exponential Training is looking to the future along with six European partners. In October, the seven partners started on a two-year project looking to help increase the numbers of young people setting up and running their own agricultural enterprises with support from SustainAgri.
Understanding Sustainable Agripreneurship
The project, SustainAgri utilises the traits of Millennials and Generation Z to create the springboard for a new breed of agripreneurs (entrepreneurs in agriculture) who can embrace farming and transform it into sustainable entrepreneurship. SustainAgri will develop an innovative training package of materials, tools including a serious game, tailored to the educational needs of the younger generations, which will enable the new entrants to implement a sustainability business model using the Triple Bottom Line (TBL) sustainability framework to lead agrobusinesses to sustainable development. The serious game will be used as a training and assessment tool for the VET trainer.
The project’s aims include:
- Strengthening the competitiveness of the agricultural sector by introducing young agripreneurs into sustainable farming;
- Creating incentives for younger people to consider entering and leading agro enterprises;
- Linking sustainability with farm profitability, demonstrating how the adoption of new technologies (smart farming) and management practices can reduce environmental impact and increase profitability;
- Improving awareness of rural communities on social and environmental responsibility;
- Fostering transnational cooperation among the widest possible number of actors along the agricultural sector to better service sustainable farming.
The project is designed for individuals and organisations such as young entrepreneurs, stakeholder from rural areas, Vocational Education and Training providers and enterprise agencies and business start-up centres. The project involves six partners plus Exponential Training: CZU Prague, 8D Games (Netherlands), Center for education and innovation (Greece); Dekaplus (Cyprus); Trebag (Hungary) and Youth Europe Service (Italy).
In the first stage of the project, Exponential Training will lead the development of a new vocational training programme and toolkit designed for aspiring agripreneurs. Exponential’s team has already drafted the curriculum and partners are now reviewing it. The next step will be to begin the process of creating inspiring and rich materials and tools covering seven different topics. Topics will include understanding sustainability and the opportunities for aspiring agripreneurs; how to prepare a business plan and to embrace innovation and new product development and how to lead and manage teams.
Exponential Managing Director, Joh Moore said:
“This is a new sector for Exponential. Fortunately, the other partners have a deep understanding of both sustainability and the agricultural sector. Our contribution will main be in coordinating the development of the SustainAgri training course and toolkit. I am excited to see how our partners create and develop a new Serious Game – this approach is both exciting and new to Exponential”
As the project progresses, Exponential will share more blogs and stories – by late 2021/early 2022, Exponential will lead the UK launch and first SustainAgri pilot courses, so what this space!