FOUNDATION of EGO-CREANET “VIRTUAL INTERNATIONAL AGENCY”.
Letter of intent between :
LRE/EGOCREANET – University of Florence Italy
Director : Paolo Manzelli – Phone :+39/055/332549 – LRE@UNIFI.IT
"Knowledge Management innovation is the basis of benefit for the future Knowledge society"
Considering that the “knowledge based economy” requires explicit knowledge management to build up the essential basis of understanding the process innovation for enterprise success, national vitality and societal advancement,
- The present proposal of the FOUNDATION of EGO-CreaNET “VIRTUAL INTENATIONAL AGENCY”, is taking in consideration the following aims , goals and criteria for producing a relevant “ knowledge strategy “ in a knowledge creation driving contents innovation to develop promotional actions and projects in the context of the European vision of socio-economic change initiated with the LISBONA EU-COUNCIL (May-2000)
AIM: Managing intelligence for developing “Community networks” and to foster socio-economic building needs in contents and methods of interactive and proactive on line participation for developing new forms of knowledge construction in Europe , oriented to formulate innovative programs at all levels - local, regional, and global.
GOAL: Favouring new theory on socio-economic growth and improving and implementing the key role of “net-work co-operative management” reflecting the new value of ITC in driving knowledge productivity of “intangible assets” as well as “human capital and social and environmental capital ”.
CRITERIA for Actions : Starting from the consideration that “ skills and knowledge innovation” will be the main economic resources of the future Knowledge Society the EGO-CreaNET “VIA” will be utilize the a sharing methodology of intellectual on line co-operation for understanding the fundamental changes of knowledge dynamics and to develop new educational research innovation .The focus of the promotional actions of EGO-CREANET “ VIA” will be to strengthen the “knowledge sharing” relationships between Universities and SMEs , on the basis of an “net-learning” approach favouring knowledge management skills innovation and exploiting and assessing various co-operative performance and activities on life-long education at all levels of human resources endorsement.
Hence focusing the previous Mission’s statements EGO-CreaNET (IT)
and the Partner co-Founder of EGO-CreaNET “VIA”
would like to enjoy the FOUNDATION of “EGOCreaNET – “VIRTUAL INTERNATIONAL VIRTUAL AGENCY” .
The Manager of the founder’s institutions agree to the following initial procedure that consist simply to sign this letter of intent as a necessary premise for opening to a large international adhesion to the EGO-CreaNET “VIA” Foundation.
The successive start up of EGO-CreaNET “VIA” will be to produce a common document to initiate the realization of an effective and efficient “Knowledge Management Enterprise” fostering a creative innovation in the sector of European Knowledge Economy and aiming
a) to establish a common promotion of some EU- FP6 project proposals
b) Co-organizing a staff of “e.working researchers” that will be the skilled group of actors in the entire process of the Foundation of EGO-CreaNET- “VIA” .
PAOLO MANZELLI & ___________________________________________________
SIGNED : by the partner Co-Founder
DATE of the preliminary Proposal 10DEC/2003
BUILDING SKILLS for “FOOD –QUALITY TRACEABILITY ” in “KNOWLEDGE
“SKILL SHORTAGE” overcoming in Vocational and Permanent Education System was the main focus of the ACTION PLAN of Leonardo Project OGM (2002-2003). http://food-traceability.net/
*) PREMISE –
After one year of an analysis about the contemporary skill demand on Vocational Careers innovation in the food industry and in the "Food traceability Sector" this report is submitted by LRE/EGO-CreaNET of the University of Florence in the role of scientific coordinator of the OGM Leonardo Project.
Although the food processing sector is not one for which employment growth the very high complexity of food quality traceability along the entire food chain gives some problems to define a single well defined curriculum in the vocational schools and in the knowledge management innovation of Agri-food industry.
In any case the results obtained by the OGM Project will be seriously important because the
Education and skills needed to deal with an increasingly competitive environment in the food sector that it will be based on food quality traceability to guarantee the consumers about the security of food quality and in relation to the safety problems of citizen. Therefore the LRE/EGO-CreaNET believe that this report provides some useful signposts for the sector, both in terms of general strategic direction and specifically in regard to the actions needed to ensure that, as far as skills and education are concerned, both the analysis and the provision of education and training are finely geared to meet future market-place requirements about the prevention of frauds and the safety security of consumers.
This report also considers the current position in regard to education and training provision and the extent to which this is meeting workplace requirements for the food traceability sector.
Finally, it makes a series of recommendations aimed at ensuring that the knowledge management innovation oriented to improve strong relationships among Vocational Schooling and University and Agri-food industry will be adapted to meet the challenges facing it by having available a well-trained intellectual workforce, possessing the new kinds of skills mix the rapidly changing circumstances demand.
There are two key messages contained within the report. The first is that the traditional vocational education organized in the traditional school systems need to change the disciplinary teaching method to focus of an multidisciplinary management within the sector to advance skills for “food quality traceability”; as a matter of facts for understandable reasons the goal of overcoming of skill shortage related to the very complex field concerning Food quality and Safety, will no longer be adequate to be obtained through disciplinary lessons. Therefore it will be a need that Agricultural schooling systems produces contents and methods innovation to be able to develop a new management within the Agri-food sector needs.
Hence the schooling systems need to adjust without delay their content and method of lecture organization if they would like to meet, and anticipate, the constantly evolving marketplace requirements of food quality and health security requested today by Eu citizen. . Second, the quality of the permanent education for improving on the job management innovation of agro-food SME’s industry needs to be improved, in order to respond effectively to the kinds of changes of the demand of consumers and also to the industry placement in the global contemporary competition.
Those new arrangements that are now required are difficult to enrich immediately bur a great effort need to be made to equip future intellectual employees with the skills and knowledge that they will need to make the European strategy of Knowledge Economy prosper and will be sustainable in the next future. Recommendations contained in the report reflect the previous underlying issues that will be addressed to the more representative stakeholders throughout a large dissemination of the Project Results /Products.
1) The Demand and Supply of Skills in the Traceability Food Processing Sector
Need to be clear that the Demand of innovative skills for managing the Traceability in food processing sector is very high, in fact the Food Quality and Safety is one of the seven priority of development of the European Knowledge Society, decided by the extraordinary European Council (LISBON MAY 2000).
Therefore the Leonardo Project OGM develop an educational research into a context of innovative process and innovative products , that represent a not linear development with the past learning curricula and objects organized as discipline on Agriculture and Food Knowledge & Know-how . The OGM Leonardo project as a matter of facts reflects the changing professional skills and requirements of permanent education of today’s food industry and consumers in an extended Europe.
This is a not easy goal and so that it is better to understand that the Consortium OGM develop the own e.team work as a start up following fundamental goal to get an exploration of the auto-sustainability looking to develop a future training activities participating to the 6FP in the sector of Food Traceability.
Therefore for transferring the knowledge and know how obtained by the OGM Consortium and generating an expansion and deepening of the OGM network co-operation is emerging as a key question the participation to FP6 –2003-ACC-SSA-Food ( dead line 26/June/2006 ), that was proposed by PIN as a main Contractor with some partner of the OGM Leonardo Project . (REF.N° FP6-510471) This proposal obtains quite good evaluation results, but the Eu Commission requests to lower the Financial Contribution adding a heavier co-financement of the Consortium. Now the OGM Consortium looks to send again the proposal at the dead line of the 05/Feb./2004.
Certainly also the other work plan results and products will be developed by the Consortium.
In particular the OGM Consortium realizes a Portal on FOOD TRACEABILITY NET http://food-traceability.net/ where all the intermediate results and milestones were publicized in real time on line.
2.) Executive Summary – Key Findings
The Food Quality and Safety priority represent a high challenge of contemporary society that includes the GMO production and a greater intensity of competition, changing in consumption patterns, and rapid developments in food processing technology.
Responding to such challenges has the focus in terms of the skills and knowledge management expertise that the food-industry and consumers will require in the contemporary market globalization.
Therefore an analysis on the Demand and Supply of Skills in the knowledge management of food traceability sector has been undertaken OGM Consortium partners by means an on line bibliography extended to all the European Information that is included in the Portal : http://food-traceability.net/interno.php?sez=biblio&nr=1
Where the Key-Arguments are the following: Agriculture Traceability
Biosecurity ,Biotechnology ,Commercial trends ,Eating risks ,Food Biotechnology ,Food Certification ,Food chain ,Food Quality & Development ,Food Safety , Food Security ,Food Traceability ,Genetic Modified Organisms , Innovative Training ,Laws and Rules ,Mad Cow
The main objectives and actions of the OGM-Consortium studies are driven by the following the following issues:
1. Review the key factors which will impact on the different food chain traceability processing sub-sectors, and
examine how these critical drivers-of-change impact on skill requirements.
2. Examine the type of skills required to meet the needs of the food traceability sector as a whole and
its sub-sectors, taking the identified drivers-of knowledge management innovation into account.
3. Review the existing training provision within the food processing sector and evaluate its relevance
And adequacy to meet the skill needs of the sector going forward.
4. Identify the leading training providers and assess the extent of gaps and overlaps in current
5. The demand and supply of skills in the food traceability was examined in this study for some sub-sectors of the food processing: meat, milk, vegetables, especially, fruits, potatoes, grain, bread training provision.
6. Develop a diffusion of recommendation in each partner’s country to develop a framework overcoming the skill shortage for the food traceability and GMO tracking.
Note: The complexity of the theme of the food traceability processing in the total food chains and its long extension “from farm to fork” is so high that the approach of LEONARDO OGM Project have been excluded various food-chains, given that the study’s has a particular focus on the Genetically Modified Organisms and novel food tracking from the typical food in the market.
3) - Methodology of the Educational Research during the Project Implementation.
• comprehensive review of existing studies and reports, and in the food traceability sector specifically, and on issues and developments likely to impact on the food industry over the coming years.
• widely consultative series of International Congress that was held in : Prato (Italy- 31-January 2003) , in Paestum (Italy- 29 April 2003 ) , (Bucharest - Romania –12 September 2003) , ( Sofia- Bulgaria – 9 –10 - February 2004) .
The International congresses was a very important Milestones of the OGM LEONARDO Project , because a large amount of national and international Agri Food enterprises and Universities and Governmental Institutions will be present in any of previous Congresses with an very high involvement in the development of understanding the food processing sector innovation and the on the food quality and safety issues proposed by the European commission as well as one of the principal priorities of the development of the EUROPEAN KNOWLEDGE SOCIETY ( 2000-2010) . The above indicated congresses was followed from one day of GMO Consortium workshops where an extensive food -industry survey, was taken into consideration for involving them as well stakeholders and utilisation of the diffusion and the dissemination of ongoing results of the project also proposing a series of one-to-one personal interviews with leading food company executives.
Ultimately during the GMO-CONSORTIUM Workshops was developed some opportunities of collaboration with leading players in third level training organisations and training providers to examine and validate survey findings.
4) CHANGING OF COMPERITIVE SCENARY AND CHALLENGES ON FOOD MARKET
The analysis of the implication of the contemporary implications on working changes in the Food Processing Sector generate a fundamental consideration for implementing the skill building initiatives on vocational and permanent educational innovation in knowledge management of the GMO Pilot Project on issues related to food quality traceability.
Capital investment in new plant and process automation will result in less manual and unskilled labour being required in food manufacturing companies. The clear implication is that total employment in those companies will decline over time. There are several consequences.
Firstly, companies must be capable of making the capital investments required to implement new science & technology and organizational changes more appropriated to their business.
Secondly, both management and workers must be trained to understand and work any new systems implemented.
It easy to understand that those needs of change are too much complex and expensive for a single AGRI-Food SME; therefore a “networked economy” need to be considered a preliminary necessity for enjoining into a clusters co-organized as well “digital districts” , Enterprises and Centres of research working together as a new competitive endeavour on the food market and marketing .
This approach of Networked Economy is the fundamental challenge that need of a renovation of human skilled resources in managing production networking lines rather than in carrying out the work themselves like single independent enterprises.
Therefore the effective needs generated by the contemporary changes of competitive scenery pressed by the globalization of the market is to develop “Team-skills and competencies” cantered on managing chain efficiency production flow based on the quality and the security of food production from the farm to the purchased foods .
Responsible acceptance of such world wide transformation of the competitive scenery on food market will require a major change in socio-economic culture of and hence need of the development of educational research for improving the intangible assets ( human an and social capital) in the post industrial development of knowledge society.
An additional consideration is regarding the Information Technology of Communication (ITC) because it is also a compelling factor for change and in fact It has given great impact on the food business over the past decade with some examples being the introduction of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) in best practices on “HACCP certification methodology, between suppliers and buyers and computerised process control systems. ITC is also the basis for effective Team- management for the Knowledge Economy development
Finally in the Food Changing of competitive scenery of the food sector, biotechnology assumes a great importance.
As a matter of facts biotechnology is increasingly a major influence in the food industry.
“Traditional” biotechnology has always been a significant element of the food industry. This includes the use of enzymes such as in cheese-making, fermentation in brewing, yeast in baking, etc. However, biotechnology is now moving
Today, agricultural biotechnology, together with its potential and risks, is a matter of concern for politicians, producers, scientists and the civil society. It is a heavily discussed issue in almost every country, where opinions of the different parties vary considerably and sometimes are quite different. Consequently, appropriate management, considering aspects related to research, bio-safety, intellectual property rights and public perception regarding this technology, is of greatest importance.
Worldwide has been placed on the production (resistance to diseases and tolerance to herbicides) of the most economically important crops (wheat, cotton, rapeseed and soybean) with no direct benefits for the consumer, which has not helped create a favourable public opinion on biotechnology in general and on transgenic crops in particular. Nevertheless, efforts are being made with second-generation transgenics functional foods to improve the quality of products, for example by increasing the nutritional value of food, improving flavour or reducing those substances in food which traditionally produce allergies
In the direction of functional/fortified foods common examples here include breads with added vitamins, and liquid milk and yogurts fortified with added minerals, vitamins and “probiotics”. Today food probiotics research is are working for developing the understanding the use of pro-biotics elements (for helping lack of vitality) instead of anti-biotics (against life).
Therefore it is a misconception that nowadays many people think of biotechnology only in the context of Genetically-Modified (GMO) foods. These have been the subject of considerable adverse publicity in recent years and it is fair to say that there is considerable negative consumer sentiment and distrust of GMO foods including the potential risk of bio-pollution for the environment and health.
Besides plant breeding, conservation of genetic resources is another issue of importance in the application of biotechnology. In this sense, the fundamental role of germ-plasm banks should be highlighted, in particular those operating within international agricultural research centres, conservation in germ-plasm banks another element of agro-biodiversity conservation of equal importance is in situ conservation through national and international programmes, where biotechnology plays a fundamental role in the multiplication of in vitro plants and phyto-sanitation.
Mention should be made, first of all, of the lack of a bio-safety system which derives in two situations. First of all, the institutions and enterprises which are able to carry out research on trans-genics cannot take advantage of said capacity due to the lack of production regulations and secondly, the existence of possible illegal and uncontrolled production of some transgenic crops.
Those arguments are well treated by the Leonardo OGM Project as an important element of scientific and public debate, especially in the four international congresses organized as milestones for presenting to the public the on going results of the Leonardo Pilot Project because this argument attract traditional media of large communication to the people ( TV. Newspaper, magazines and so on). In any case, in coherence of the objectives achievement and within a pertinence of project out-comes with the priorities identified in the national call that are looking to the vocational and permanent education innovation, the CONSOTIUM efforts in this field regarding the OGM works preferentially to understand the effective possibilities to use Bio-technology in method of analysis detention and control ( for instance Bio-sensors) to avoid the co-existence of OGM and Novel foods ingredients, with the traditional organic food in the market, following the normative expressed by the European recent laws in relation to this argument.
5) Projected Skills in Vocational Schools and Permanent Training Needs
The Skill gaps identified in the food traceability processing sectors in a Leonardo GMO trans –national case study is mainly a consequence of the difficulties of developing a knowledge management competencies for growing up a networking among schools and/or University and industry as well as “clustering” aggregation in the food sector ; therefore was an important issue to understand where are the Training Constraints that are coming from the difficulties of deep understanding of the problem solving and saving methodology requested by the food quality traceability in a trans-national context :
a) There are several methods of Traceability one of them is based on an indirect traceability procedure based on a series of self – certifications, made by each industry of the chain food processing going from farm to purchased foods that now need to be extended and applied at trans-national level.
For an indirect approach oriented to find a back - traceability is developed the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) method that is a system that enables a manufacturer to concentrate on points on the production line where problems may occur, and to correct any errors immediately at those critical points.
The application of the CODEX Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) methodology has been actively encouraged to prevent or reduce the food safety risk and frauds to an acceptable level of food- contamination.
There is also strong evidence that HACCP application in a trans-national level need to follow uniform procedures and this is very difficult because need to deal with different existing laws and other differences of production and processing foods in different countries that limits the of operational procedures of food quality traceability in an extended dimension of exchanging HACCP data. .
So that is becoming an opinion of the OGM Consortium that the deep need for the future
b) Typical Food Quality Traceability is to develop a research on more direct indicators for Food Quality Traceability that can be used for detecting the food safety and control the quality along all the food chain processing.
Other methods are based on reliable direct traceability scientific methodologies based on “natural molecular markers” or by the “bio-technological detection and control that can be applied to technical and organizational aspects especially to determine production, species and geographical origin also with the scope to avoid GMO co-existence and separate the traceability of GMO or novel foods ingredients from conventional and organic crops along the food and feed chains.
In this case for validating the scientific methodologies of food – direct - traceability and developing innovative skill shortage the schooling systems need to enjoy into a cluster network with centres of research and agro- food industry.
Therefore the project Leonardo GMO will tray to practice this need of learning by doing developing a proposal on FP6 – Integrated Project – on the Area 5.4.4. T/4.1 with a dead line 05/ Feb. / 2004 on the general issue:” TYPICAL FOOD QUALITY TRACEABILITY”. http://www.consorzioqualital.it/tfqt/
In this way we hope to favour the understanding of the dynamics of the future direction of the Research innovation in a strengthening co-operation with Agri-food industry, in a way that the perspectives to overcome the skill deficit both:
in vocational schools on food traceability new professions and also to master the critical gap in permanent education of knowledge management of SME’s can advance in a synergic system of collaboration for the training innovation on the Food Quality and Safety European Priority because those skill shortages are critical barriers to the future development of the food quality traceability into a trans European dimension.
The Research work done of OGM Leonardo Pilot Project on the Identification of the critical skill gaps has identified the various current and potential future new skill sets required by food chain traceability processing. The resulting survey was tested in the GMO workshop open to agri-food SME’s stakeholders and Governmental Educational Institutions for validity purposes.
6) Anticipation of training needs
Following the above objectives and activities the OGM –LEONARDO ACTION PLAN e.work to improve an innovative educational model and training units for an for renewing Knowledge Management, into a context of mutual learning between Universities and SME’s and their Associations to reply to the following fundamental questions :
a) - FIRST Priority TOPIC-- Content “ SCIENCE & SOCIETY” :- Goal: understanding the impact of Science on Society strengthening the scientific and technological basis to increase consumer confidence in the food supply chains through ensuring complete food traceability indirect HACCP certification and for meeting the Knowledge Management skill and competences innovation in an European Knowledge Economy.
. -B) – Secondary Priority TOPIC Content: “FOOD QUALITY TRACEABILITY “Goal: Keeping the Traceability problem as well as an opportunity for bridging the gap between intellectual unemployment and the development of Knowledge based Society. As a matter of facts the ability to trace down animal or agricultural foods origin through bio-technology DNA fingerprinting to any further methods of analysis ,detection and control of dangerous micro-organisms and other bio-chemical contaminants constitute an extremely relevant systems for SKILL BUILDING of new team professions because is related to the contemporary need to grow up a multidisciplinary and multi-enterprise net-working approach, that need to integrate scientific, legal and productive capabilities co-operating in a way to be able to reply to the changes in the production and processing and distribution of foods in the global market favouring a quick and efficient retrieval of transparent knowledge finalised to guarantee and to control and to certificate through a well understandable labelling , the quality and safety of any composition of food from raw materials coming from many diverse countries and very different production systems .
In syntheses the categorisation of innovative skill and competencies can be subdivided in two sets
1) on Individual new skills based of content integration
2) on team-networking skills based on e.work in a team
CATEGORY 1, R&D new individual skills
- • Food Science &Technology skills related to the commercialisation
- • Product Quality control research / and • HACCP auditing skills
- • Biosensors knowledge and traditional product tasting skills
CATEGORY 2, Operative new team-skills
- Food chain Product and Processing supervisory on traceability control team-Skills
- Food Industry networking Knowledge Management team-skills
- ITC Operative team-skills for marketing in an market extension
- Total quality management and multi-languages team-skills
- Research &• Business planning team-skills
- Food Procurement and regulatory team –Skills
7) Understanding the role of training related to the issues of Food Quality Traceability in a trans-national context.
In relation to the FIRST TOPIC: e.g. Science e Society the Leonardo Pilot Project develop a Model for implementing Vocational Agricultural Schools innovation based on an “Open Distance Training” in relation to the Direct food traceability obtained by means Molecular and Analytical Markers, Bio-sensors, and other methods of analysis, detection and control especially regarding the GMO tracking and the Nutritional aspects of the food quality.
This model was developed before by means the single tests on the partners colleges in Italy ( Don Bosco Agricultural Institute . and on U.K. ( Otley College) in Lituany (Kauna Food College) using a sharing method on line for communicating to all the OGM-Consortium about the different approaches in the different countries and the on going and final results.
The skill area that was taken in consideration was the following:
-Adaptation of training and curricula to the Scientific and Technological changes in the food quality traceability.
-Entrepreneurship training on issues related to knowledge management innovation
- Intangible assets development in the European knowledge economy in relation to food quality & safety issues.
In relation to the second TOPICS , especially regarding the Knowledge Management Innovation of SME’s , the GMO Project consider the need of understanding the dynamics of the competitive scenery in the complex food sector of production and selling and the new risks and challenge of the food market.
The most important factor on this Topic is that the Scientific-Research on Food quality and safety need to be developed in a direct joining with the Food-Industry. As a matter of facts in the development of the European Knowledge Economy, it is important to overcome the conceptualization of organization that was a tradition of the obsolete industrial society where the research is separated activity from the market activities e.g. before work the scientific research and after it will become possible the transfer of the knowledge innovation to the users applications.
We see for instance how great disaster on public health and to the market generate the “Mad Caw” challenge.
As in this case the science research needs to study in collaboration with industry to prevent the problem of the Prions that are able to cross the barriers between the animal and human species. The development of rapid diagnostic tests has limited the risk of transmissible spongiform encephalophaties or prion induced diseases, also if the fundamental scientific question remain till now unresolved. The BSE challenge put immediately in joining research activities Industrial Associations with Joint Research Centres and Consumer Health Protection Institution for developing diagnosis and tests for detecting infected cow’s meat, and the methods to treat the prevention of such diseases.
From this example we can understand and generalise the way to overcome these networked managements understanding between industry and centres of research for developing the Food chain Traceability.
As a matter of fact it is am important trend to overcome the splitting between the role of science and the production, growing up new training activities in knowledge management of integrated science and business.
As a matter of facts the business in a knowledge society need a new management staff till to day unavailable because the disciplinary approach proper of training in the Industrial society context create a considerable barrier to develop innovative training courses in the “Science & Business integration£” for developing the future Knowledge Economy. This is particularly important to understand because nowadays most food companies are SMEs and accordingly, do not have additional staff capacity to cover for such absences in innovative knowledge management.
8) SKILLS INNOVATION AREA: CRITICAL GAP in SCIENCE & BUSINESS INTEGRATION
Making Science Relevant to Business there is to take in consideration a great divide of language.
‘Business’ and ‘Science’ often speak in different ‘mentality’, resulting in a perceived lack of relevance between the two. To help bridge the language/culture divide, it is necessary to develop courses for integrating science and business communities as well is proposed in the INTEGRATED PROJECTS (“IP”) of the six framework program on the priority of the European Commission. Understanding this need the LEONARDO CONSORTIUM during this year works to develop the agreement among trans-national IP communities, utilizing in this a system of effective training activities based in an advanced public understanding of science and business integration.
From those experiences realized by means the ONLINE MAILING LIST WEB-LOGIC approach, was possible to understand and to define in practices the SKILLS AREA CRITICAL GAP in SCIENCE & BUSINESS INTEGRATION that we summarize in the following new list of SUPPORTING DEVELOPMENTALKNOWLEDGE ECONOMY SKILLS in the food sector:
-Science and business project planning skills using “Goal Oriented” methodology
-Negotiation skills among science and business communities
-Organizational skills of science and business oriented to diffuse reliable traceability methods and rapid diagnostic tests
- Sales and Marketing Skills about the risks and frauds prevention in full chain food traceability
-Popularization skills on science and business for disseminating public understanding of knowledge economy
-Operative “Team-Skills” on Net Learning approach on sharing knowledge between science and business in different languages.
9) Education NET LEARNING TECHNOLOGY for the Food Sector
The OGM Leonardo Consortium delegates the partners MONDO (Ro) and PIN (It) to develop a range of net learning on line initiatives being performed across the partnership country that are reported in the Web Portal http://food-traceability.net/, described in details in other section of this report.
In this preliminary section are evaluated some consideration conclusions and recommendations on best practice of “NET-Learning” approach based on a sharing knowledge methodology in the food traceability sector. First of all NET – Learning is synonymous of “Mutual Learning” oriented to promote the capacity for sustainable food Quality traceability systems.
Certainly looking in this network learning dimension for responsible mutual learning access to an internet connected computer education we found a lot of difficulties in tray to e.work to deepen the mutual knowledge in the understanding of advanced concepts and skills associated with modern sustainable food quality traceability issues
So that the OGM Consortium using of the professional activities of MONDO – (RO) in this field will focus on a digital literacy and to diffuse them with appropriated on line initiatives as well opening a Forum and using the BLOG (web-logic) system of opening a debate. Certainly the active and inter-active involvement was very low on those initiatives because new educational skill needed to develop knowledge sharing in a way that the Net -learning technology can become an effective agent of change for sustainable food quality and safety development.
The demonstrable potential for bridging the gaps between the Research and business environment throughout and information communication technology , is today an hard question of different mentality that exist between centres of research and agri-food industry , that seems to get no time for advancing a common learning tools for advancing into a sustainable Knowledge Economy.
It will be possible that in the future those initiatives of Net-Learning will be get time to expand towards an extension of the partnership through the FP6 – Initiatives in the Typical Food Quality Traceability that the Leonardo OGM pilot project is now seeking to expand for developing the contents spectrum through further educational modules and units , that can be developed by a system of e.Educational Edition on FOOD TRACEABILITY , realized in a similar way of the present Tool-KIT for making advanced mutual learning on food quality and safety a reality.
In any case a number of key points emerged by the NET-Learning pilot experience that can be good suggestions for future actions.
Science/Technology on demand on line courses orientation to on the job permanent education, being organised along functional integrated lines of specialist science & business avoiding broad-science -based general food management courses.
Available traditional training in the food sector provides a national educational programs and curses are essentially concentrated around the disciplinary curricula on food industry, food hygiene, food nutrition, and more recently on bio-technology of GMO and novel foods. In any case Most of the above training programmes are coming from public education sectors and are nationally accredited. More recently a great amount of short courses for adjournment in on the job training are recently developed also on line on the issues related to HACCP/ISO food safety and quality areas, normally reflecting the impact of national legislation and regulation as a driver conceptualization of innovation of training in the knowledge management of industry.
Conversely, there is a almost low level of availability and interest in multidisciplinary training in “Science & Business” in food innovation, based on many strategically important skill areas such as new integrated Science and Industry relationships for realizing new products and processes development in the AGRI FOOD PRODUCTION AND SELLING, including operations management and customer satisfaction and relationship management at European level.
Probably this shortage reflects the industry’s short-term operational focus and the difficulties of Agri-FOOD SME’s to be involved in a networked economy , so that the lack of interest on a more open agreement between Research and Production seems in contrast with the trends of the globalization of the food-market.
As a matter of facts today the relatively low level of graduate interest in the integrated sectors of SCIENCE & BUSINESS , are combined with the small graduate intake of new intellectual jobs by the industry, and vice versa reflects the poor image of the food industry among graduates and, over the longer term, the defect in an advanced integration of SCIENCE & BUSINESS poses a serious challenge to the food- sector, in terms of the management capabilities on food quality tracing and intellectual capital knowledge management innovation of the Agri Food Industry.
Therefore the few examples of industry and University joining enterprises need to be taken in account for giving them an added value aiming to facilitate a strategy able to attract with a good working position the persons and teams that are able to develop Net-learning and net-working systems for growing up sharing flexible learning in permanent education on a trans-national SCIENCE & BUSINESS integration. .
Finally the fundamental suggestion coming from the pilot project OGM LEONARDO in this area of food Quality Traceability addressed to decision and political makers are to develop any strategic tool and actions to allow an exchange of ideas on R&D projects realized as best practices in joining ventures between public or private Centres of research and Agri-food industry and developing on the job innovative knowledge management on Science& Business courses and intellectual job opportunities.
10) Key drivers of Future Sustainability.
As well has been clearly identified before , enhanced food safety and traceability knowledge management innovation of skills and competencies in Science & business is a critical sustainability prerequisite for European Knowledge Economy in the priority’s area of food quality and safety.
In fact the structure of the food manufacturing industry need to be changed radically over the contemporary decade, reflecting the impact of competitive forces on the sector that need to increase the consumer’s satisfaction on quality of food and citizen confidence in the food health security throughout the scientific and technological basis that ensure the complete traceability along the entire food chains. Also it will ensure that the Typical or Regional Food can be linked to their declared origin ( both geographical and product origin) .It will assure the prevention of frauds and the distinction of organic food by the GMO and other products based on recent biotechnological production , from raw materials to purchased foods.
The above consumers need of security and confidence gives a very high added - value in the Food Market, but this means that it will be necessary a European wide networking structure based on Science & Business integration that will be accelerated by means complemented process of knowledge management training innovation.
Therefore some of the main driving forces for the future sustainability of the Educational Research work developed by the OGM Leonardo Pilot Project are outlined below as well fundamental recommendation and long term requirements:
- Continuous analysis of the development to anticipate the training needs in innovation on “Food Quality & Safety”
- Adaptation of the traditional vocational courses to the Agro-industry needs in relation to the scientific and organizational changes
- Favouring multi-disciplinary curricula development and integration of Science and Market for growing up competitive knowledge management skills improving supply-chain efficiency.
- Including in the curricula food Chain traceability consistent advancements specially in relation to GMO Tracking, and Typical or Regional organic food for saving their traditional quality
- Defining new possible team-job profiles (i.e. – multi-professional) for networking in the area of Food Traceability available within a sharing method of exchanging information and solutions obtained by an on line co-operation among agricultural colleges, research centres and industry.
- Develop a permanent system of training of “tutors” for helping students and more in general stakeholders to “mutual learning activities “in the area of Food Quality & Safety.
- Implement an open distance learning platforms in “science and society” basic issues regarding food nutrition and health, for improving a developmental Citizen’s understanding of the dynamics of change.
Based on these requirements written as well as sustainability understanding for implementing new educational strategies and increasing R&D and Industry co.-cooperation by means growing up adequate skill and competencies, it is imperative for food suppliers and public and private stakeholders to invest in and monitoring the EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH INNOVATION.
Given the speed of movement of competitors and the fast-moving nature of the food industry, such development of Educational Research is vital to framing appropriate strategies of Knowledge Economy development in Europe.