Recent rural development policy and approaches in the developing world have focused more on policy dialogue, good governance and decentralization in reaching the MDGs. Subsequently however, agricultural extension services have suffered, with poor funding and generally underpaid and under trained manpower. Despite many agencies recommending pluralistic extension models delivering services according to demand and market opportunities, their realization has been problematic.
Increasing scarcity of food, fuel, feed and fiber, combined with new risks posed by climate change has catapulted agriculture back onto the political agenda. Issues of food security, environmental protection and sustainable economic development pose new and major challenges to the agricultural sector, and to extension in particular.
To meet this critical gap in knowledge, the University of Hohenheim, with support from the BMZ and GTZ has edited a 3rd fully revised edition of the handbook to be published in 2009 by Margraf, available to citizens of ACP countries via the CTA.
Much has changed since the last edition in 1987. This revised 3rd edition updates existing knowledge with new insights in line with recent developments and experience. It covers more and broader perspectives, both rural as well as important ruralurban linkages, agricultural technologies and agriculture in developing nations facing increasing integration into globalized markets and value chains. It references all five continents, with regard to good practices and achievements as well as the pressing issues. There is also a brand new volume dealing with capacity building.
The revised 3rd edition is both tool and training guide, essential for all those involved in agricultural extension, whether impoverished or smallholder farmers or commercial farmers and companies, and equally suitable for use from field level up to university courses.