The AgriNext project aims to create a learning environment in the field of multifunctional agriculture and contribute to fostering green jobs

11. 8. 2022

Naklo, 7 July 2022

The Biotechnical Center Naklo (BC Naklo) coordinates the new Erasmus+ project AgriNext which aims to create a learning environment that responds to the skills demand on the job market in the field of Multifunctional Agriculture. The project will facilitate the implementation of the EU action Partnership for Excellence – Centers of Vocational Excellence.

Presently, the agricultural sector is facing several changes – digitalisation is affecting the sector greatly, with smaller farms impacted more so than larger scale operations that can adapt to state-of-the-art technologies faster. Furthermore, the agricultural sector is extremely affected by climate change, a worsening issue which we have been facing in the last decade. Agriculture vocational education and training schools are doing their best to properly address and react to those changes but need to be further supported to be more successful.

The challenge is immense, but the project partners are fully committed and motivated towards the AgriNext mission. Within the project, the multifunctional agriculture stakeholders will be connected with an innovative approach through the platform, creating a virtual environment for interaction, demonstration, development and individualisation. Partners strive to create an environment – a crossroad, where different users such as teachers, guidance service providers, students and researchers, could interact. This environment will be built and represented in an AgriNext Business Incubator. It will be established in three countries – Slovenia, Croatia and Spain, and will be also supported by Ireland partners. The incubator will offer opportunities as a learning lab and application centre, where partners aim to build strong, long-lasting business-VET partnerships.

Furthermore, the project partners will provide the support required for lasting improvements in the multifunctional agriculture vocational education and training to foster rural excellence and green jobs. The guidance service model continuously responds to the rapidly changing needs on the job market and will be developed to promote rural development and vitality. It will also present the opportunities of multifunctional agriculture​ and to increase digital competences amongst students and teachers​. In collaboration with students, motivating video content will be prepared, promoting green jobs and stressing the importance of continuous upskilling and lifelong learning.

“Flexible educational system with support of trained guidance service providers will enable learners to have an experience of a more tailored made learning environment – this will help to increase motivation amongst students. Green job = dream job video trailers will be a peer2peer way of promoting a profession in (multifunctional) agriculture – and thus rural development.”, explains project manager from BC Naklo, Ana Ambrožič.

Apart from the Biotechnical Center Naklo, the project involves nine partners from Slovenia, Ireland, Croatia and Spain: On Projects Advising SL, Coag Jaen Union de Agricultores y Ganaderos Jovenes Agricultores de Jaen, Consejeria de Educacion - Junta de Andalucia, Instituto De Educacion Secundaria Galileo Galilei,  Arctur, Kmetijsko gozdarska zadruga Sloga Kranj, Z.O.OKarlovac University of Applied Sciences, Skink, Institute of the Republic of Slovenia for Vocational Education and Training and Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest. The highly skilled consortia will bring to the project well longed-for experiences and knowledge.

“Partners’ schools will exchange pedagogical practices and learning flexibilisation options, sectors representative will give direct insight into changes in the agricultural (job) market, educational authority (CPI) will support us with implementation of systemic changes, while IT partner will establish virtual environment to support all project activities and bring them to life. The Project Advising Members will keep an eye on the quality of project implementation.”, added Ambrožič.  

The project commenced on June 1st, and its duration will be 48 months. In June, project partners gathered in the first Kick-off meeting in Naklo, Slovenia, to set the project activities and discuss further steps.

“The purpose of this meeting was to meet the partners in person and to get to know each other's organisations. Together, we prepared the activities plan for the next four years of the project duration, with emphasis on the tasks taking place in the immediate future. Great energy amongst partners was established during the meeting, which is an important starting point for the successful project implementation.”, concludes Ambrožič.


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