Project AgriNext presented in My Countryside and Sky is the limit Magazines

9. 1. 2024

In the magazine edited by the students from BC Naklo titled The Sky's the Limit, Luka Orehar wrote an article named Who are the Guidance Service Providers? Partners from Spain, Ireland, and Croatia meet in Slovenia. The partners of AgriNext project have prepared diverse content, which they presented to the whole consortium to educate and increase the competencies among career counselors.

Who are the Guidance Service Providers

The article Project AgriNext links stakeholders from the field of Multifunctional Agriculture was published in the magazine My Countryside (slo. Moje podeželje, December 2023). The authors Luka Orehar and Nina Kaličanin shortly describe the meaning of multifunctional agriculture, present AgriNext's partners, aims, goals, and tasks. The article also decscribe the activities of pilot training for the Guide Service Providers which took place in BC Naklo from 24.10 to 26.10 2023.

Article is available in SI language here. 

Article in EN Language:

AgriNext project connects stakeholders from the field of multifunctional agriculture


Behind the acronym Agrinext lies the longer title of the project - Agricultural and rural excellence Incubator and Platform for the Exchange of competencies.  Biotechnical Centre Naklo has teamed up with nine partners from Slovenia, Croatia, Ireland, and Spain into a consortium of project partners and applied for the Erasmus+ project call, Key Action 2 (K2), Centres of Vocational Excellence (CoVE). 

The project contents of AgriNext are related to the field of multifunctional agriculture. What is multifunctional agriculture?  It is a globally accepted concept that agricultural holdings have a broad impact on:

· landscape design,

· ecology and ecological assets such as land conservation, sustainable management of renewable natural resources, preservation of biodiversity, etc.,

· and socio-economic recovery of rural areas.

Agriculture is multifunctional when it has one or more other activities in addition to its core activity. In the strict sense, multifunctional farming means an agricultural activity with its supplementary activities, which in economic terms allows farms to be more flexible to global and local market changes and different sources of income.

Project information

According to the tender conditions, each of the countries had to have 2 partners: a secondary vocational school or university and a representative of the economy (enterprise), which is treated with a foot tied to multifunctional agriculture. The project also involves partners who are experts in management and project management (OnProject), authority in the field of VET education (Centre for Vocational Education) and digital support experts (ARCTUR).

Partners participating in the AgriNext project.

  • Biotechnical Centre Naklo, Slovenia, Lead partner
  • Sloga, agricultural and forestry cooperative form Slovenia, Kranj, z.o.o., Slovenia
  • Centre of the Republic of Slovenia for Vocational Education and Training, Slovenia
  • ARCTUR computer engineering d. o. o., Slovenia
  • On Project Advising SL, Spain
  • COAG Jaen Union de Agricultores y Ganaderos Jovenes Agriculture de Jaen, Spain
  • IES Galileo Gal, Spain
  • Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest, Ireland
  • Veleučilište u Karlovcu, Croatia
  • SKINK d.o.o., Croatia 

The AgriNext project started in June, 2022, and will run for 4 years, until 2026.

The purpose of the project is to create a learning field that responds quickly to changes in the labour market (multifunctional agriculture) and will be achieved with eight specific objectives:

1. Adaptations of educational preferences and curricula in vocational and technical education programmes according to the European Qualification System. EQF) at level 3-6 to respond quickly to labour market needs.

2. Empowering teachers to respond to changes in the labour market and integrate new knowledge and skills into education.

3. Establishment of a system of continuous exchange of needs, experiences, practices, scientific knowledge, training programmes ... among employers, teachers, mentors, consultants, and other stakeholders in the field of multifunctional agriculture.

4. To educate pupils, students, and other learners so that they are qualified, entrepreneurially oriented and motivated for lifelong education.

5. Create a physical and virtual environment that connects teachers, trainers, work-based trainers (WBL) with companies, consultants, researchers, and students. The environment will be encouraged by an individual approach in the educational process, the presentation of new technologies and entrepreneurial activities.

6. Promote rural revitalisation and development, focusing on the opportunities offered by multifunctional agriculture.

7. Improve digital competences among pupils/students and teachers.


The project partners will achieve the set goals through 8 work packages (WP).

WP1: Counselling/career guidance model (in multipurpose agriculture)

WP2: Flexibility (responsiveness) of the school system

WP3: Green job – dream job

WP4: Business incubator for rural excellence

WP5: AgriNext Digital Platform

WP6: Project management/management

WP7: Monitoring, evaluation, and quality assurance of the project

WP8: Dissemination and enhancement of project results


The work packages follow each other meaningfully, and some (WP6, WP7 and WP8) are implemented throughout the project. We are currently in the middle of implementation of WP 1 - counselling model led by BC Naklo and WP 2 - flexibility of the CPI-led school system.


Pilot training of (career) counsellors

In the days from Tuesday, 24. 10. to Thursday, 26. 10. 2023, BC Naklo hosted pilot training of consultants in the field of multifunctional agriculture. Guidance Service Provider in Multifunctional Agriculture). It was attended by representatives of project partners and two consultants from each country, a total of 20 members. Within three days, we presented a program consisting of four modules, which were designed based on an extensive document - a description of the existing consulting model for the field of multifunctional agriculture, a proposal for a new model and interviews with career counsellors. The selection program consists of the following modules:

·  M1: Information and communication within the consulting model (implementation of BC Naklo)

·  M2: Opportunities for multifunctional agriculture in rural development (implemented by IES and COAG Jaen)

·  M3: Consulting process in the consulting model (implementation of VUKA)

·  M4: Motivation for multifunctional agriculture among farmers, students, and other rural population (implementation of TUS)

The training was conducted in English and was actively designed. All lecturers prepared various pedagogical activities in which the participants actively participated, which influenced a good atmosphere. We broke the ice with an activity (exercise): choose the photo you like. Colour photographs featured images of rural areas and various farm activities. The participants selected one photo, introduced themselves and explained the reason for the selected photo. The completion of the activity summarized the interpretation of the concept of multifunctional agriculture, to which photographs associated. The activities/exercises were imaginative and the participants' motivation to participate was great. The following exercises were carried out within the module: the use of the counselling model to find a solution to the problem, the method of role-playing: jobseeker, recruiter and consultant, and exercises related to the use of the EU platforms EPALE, CEDEFOP and ESCO.

The Spanish partners have also prepared a series of activities related to the second module. We watched intriguing short videos from the multifunctional agriculture field from Spain and the Netherlands. We answered questions about what roles we see each other and what abilities we have more pronounced (as creator, initiator, organizer, leader, etc., flexibility, communicativeness, competitiveness, etc.), how we assess our behaviour (e.g. cooperation, active listening, passivity, determination, etc.) and an overview of current employment needs in the agricultural sector through the EU ESCO platform.

Croatian partners prepared engaging exercises related to the third module: an exercise for active listening, which we performed in pairs, an exercise related to achieving goals according to the SMART methodology. They eliminated real cases of farms, where their members needed additional counselling on a career/career path, and participants in the pilot training had to prepare the necessary questions and advice for each case.

The Irish partners started their presentation of the module with the balloon question method (an ice breaking method where the question is hidden in a balloon, and you have to pop it to get an answer) to review motivation about expectations for multifunctional agriculture. We looked at and debated an interesting example of good practice from Ireland.


With each of its activities, the Agrinext project expands the network of people and organizations involved in multifunctional agriculture. Immediately after the New Year, each of the partner countries will prepare a round table on the topic – adaptability (responsiveness) of the school system to changes in the labour market in the field of multifunctional agriculture. The event will be attended by representatives of vocational schools from the named field, representatives of research activities, representatives of higher vocational colleges, consultants, political decision-makers, employers, pupils, students, etc. The purpose of the event is to find a solution on how the education system and various pedagogical practices should quickly respond to changes in the labour market and employers' needs for new knowledge, skills, and competences.

Written by Luka Orehar and Nina Kaličanin