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There is renewed attention on the importance of advisory services and extension in rural development processes. This paper, based on the publication ‘Mobilizing the potential of rural and agricultural extension', focuses on five opportunities to mobilise the potential of extension and advisory services. The five areas are: (1) focusing on best-fit approaches; (2) embracing pluralism; (3) using participatory approaches; (4) developing capacity; and (5) ensuring long-term institutional support.
The paper defines and explains the concept of gender equality in advisory services and discusses the opportunities that gender equality in RAS would potentially create for global and local food production, women’s economic empowerment, household food security and nutrition as well as the challenges in achieving this.
This brief summarises the publication ‘Mobilising the potential of rural and agricultural extension’ that was prepared for the Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development (GCARD) in Montpellier, March 2010. Rural advisory services are key to putting smallholder demands at the centre of rural development, ensuring food security, and dealing with risks and uncertainty. The brief focuses on five opportunities to mobilise the potential of rural advisory services.