AgriNeTT has collected another award. The UWI research project that uses information and communications technology (ICT) to support Caribbean agriculture is one of two recipients of the FRIDA Award 2016. The award was presented to the research team in December at the Internet Governance Forum in Guadalajara, Mexico.
FRIDA is the acronym for the Regional Fund for Digital Innovation in Latin America and the Caribbean. It is an initiative of LACNIC, the non-governmental organisation responsible for Internet development in the region. The FRIDA Awards “seek to acknowledge innovative practices in the region that have made concrete contributions through the use of ICTs and have a proven impact on the region’s social and economic development,” states LACNIC. Mexicoleaks, a pro-transparency media platform, was the other winner.
AgriNeTT, launched in 2014, consists of several applications developed to support the agricultural sector: farmers, entrepreneurs, public and private institutions and policymakers. The apps provide financial management, record-keeping and commodity-pricing solutions that are accessible on mobile devices.
AgriNeTT’s core research team is from UWI St. Augustine’s Faculties of Science and Technology and Food and Agriculture, and includes partnerships with Trinidad and Tobago’s Ministry of Food Production, NAMDEVCO and CARDI.
“One of the big things for the university that has come out of this project is the extent of collaboration,” said Dr. Margaret Bernard, Project Lead and Deputy Dean of Graduate Studies and Research in the Science and Technology Faculty.
Speaking at the awards presentation, LACNIC CEO Oscar Robles called AgriNeTT a leading project in the region that has “shown how the Internet can become an instrument for strengthening rural communities.”
Apart from this win, AgriNeTT also placed in the top five among numerous international projects at the 2016 World Summit on the Information Society hosted by the International Telecommunications Union last May. The project is also a recipient of the UWI Trinidad and Tobago Research and Development Impact Fund. The RDI was established to fund research with strong potential to contribute to the development of the Caribbean and its people.
Now that the RDI period is complete, AgriNeTT is seeking new funding to continue and expand its groundbreaking research for the benefit of regional food production and security.
For more information on AgriNeTT, visit the website at: http://sta.uwi.edu/rdifund/projects/agrinett/index.asp and https://sta.uwi.edu/uwitoday/archive/august_2016/article7.asp