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An update on the AGRicultural Integrated Survey (AGRIS)


The methodology for the Agricultural Integrated Survey (AGRIS) is being developed in the context of the Global Strategy to improve Agricultural and Rural Statistics, following the decision made at the 11th Global Steering Committee in June 2015 to allocate funding for this work.
AGRIS is a farm-based modular 10-year survey program, which relies on cost effective statistical methodologies and leverages on the most recent IT innovations. AGRIS covers different technical, economic, environmental and social dimensions of agricultural holdings through its core module and its 4 recommended rotating modules, devoted to the following themes: ‘economy’, ‘labour force’, ‘machinery and equipment’, and ‘production methods and environment’. A possible setting for the integrated data collection process is proposed as follows:

The current methodological work focuses on two priorities: questionnaire design and sampling. Insights in the design of the generic questionnaires for the ‘Rotating Module 2’ on Labour Force are provided in the article below. Ultimately, AGRIS will be supported by a comprehensive Methodological Toolkit including all necessary resources in terms of (1) technical methodology, (2) specialized survey tools and instruments that use the latest knowledge and technology, and that cover the full range of survey steps, and (3) budgetary and institutional framework guidelines.
Most of the desk work on the 2 priorities is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2015. Several methodological issues will however remain pending and will be brought further for field testing and ground-truthing in 2016.
In addition to the methodological work, discussions are underway with key funding and technical partners, as well as interested countries.

François Fonteneau, AMIS Project Coordinator, FAO, Rome


Developing the AGRIS LABOUR Module

AGRIS is designed as a cost-effective method for national statistical agencies to accelerate the production of quality data on the technical, economic, environmental and social dimensions of agricultural holdings. Labour is certainly one of the most important issues to be considered in analyzing the economic and social dimensions of agricultural holdings as well as being a key element to estimate agricultural productivity. For this reason, AGRIS has envisaged a thematic stand-alone rotating module on ‘labour’.

Key measurement objectives:
The key measurement objectives of the AGRIS LABOUR module are to investigate the labour force used in the holdings and to collect information on household members’ work within and outside the agricultural holding.

Focus areas:
As one of the key policy issues of the agricultural sector in developing countries is the predominance of small farmers and subsistence agriculture, it is of outmost importance for AGRIS LABOUR to ensure accurate reporting of work-for-own-use.

This matter becomes even more critical from the gender perspective, since women are particularly active in own use production work (of both goods and services). In addition, the AGRIS LABOUR module will include a number of decent work indicators that are relevant for the agricultural sector in low income countries (such as returns to labour, measures of underemployment, overemployment and occupation multiplicity, etc.).

International Standards and Partnership:
AGRIS LABOUR aims to align with the new resolutions concerning work statistics  adopted by the International Conference of Labour Statisticians (19th ICLS) in 2013. For the same reason, special attention is given to identify individuals in ‘own use production work’.

The design of the AGRIS LABOUR module benefits from inputs of the ILO and the World Bank, and is supported by the Data 2X Project through the ‘Measuring Work in Agriculture’ partnership.

Chiara Brunelli, Food Security and Nutrition Officer, FAO


Regional Training Workshop on the development of SPARS for English speaking countries in Africa

The African Development Bank (AfDB), in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and the Central Statistical Office of Zambia, organized a regional training workshop on SPARS, in Lusaka, Zambia, on 6-10 October 2015.
The main objective of the workshop was to support the implementation of the Action Plan for Africa for Improving Statistics for Food Security, Sustainable Agriculture, and Rural Development. Specifically,  participants were trained on how to use Guidelines to develop SPARS, shared country experiences and best practices in developing SPARS, and conducted working sessions on the development of SPARS.
The workshop was attended by 72 participants, including National Coordinators of the Action Plan and Coordinators of the National Strategies for the Development of Statistics (NSDS) from 28 African English-speaking countries. Other attendants included agricultural experts and members of the Regional Steering Committee of the Action Plan, as well as representatives of development partners of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the African Union Commission, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the European Union (EU).
Participants appreciated the fact that both SPARS and NSDS were brought on board and committed to taking necessary measures to ensure that SPARS be fully aligned and integrated into the NSDS and successfully implemented in their respective countries.
Vincent Ngendakumana, AfDB

Upcoming Meetings

5th Regional Steering Committee Meeting for Asia-Pacific

9 december 2015, bangkok, thailand


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