Optimizing Digital Data Sharing in Agriculture

Report by Mercy Corps: “In our digital age, data is increasingly recognized as a powerful tool across all sectors, including agriculture. Historically, data on rural farmers was extremely limited and unreliable; the advent of new digital technologies has allowed more reliable data sources to emerge, from satellites to telecom to the Internet of Things. Private companies—including fintech and agricultural technology innovators—are increasingly utilizing these new data sources to learn more about farmers and to structure new services to meet their needs.

In order to make efficient use of this emerging data, many actors are exploring data-sharing partnerships that combine the power of multiple datasets to create greater impact for smallholder farmers. In a new Learning Brief looking at AgriFin engagements with 14 partners across four different countries, we found that 25% of engagements featured a strong data-sharing component. These engagements spanned various use cases, including credit scoring, targeted training, and open access to information.

Drawing on this broad experience, our research looks at what we’ve learned about data sharing to enhance service delivery for smallholder farmers. We have distilled these lessons into common barriers faced by data-sharing arrangements in order to provide practical guidance and tools for overcoming these barriers to the broader ecosystem of actors involved in optimizing data sharing for agriculture….(More) (Access the full length learning brief)”.