Climate Smart Agriculture: Understanding the intersection and opportunities between the agri-food chain & technology innovations

Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) aims to ‘transform and reorient agricultural systems to effectively support development and ensure food security in a changing climate. CSA aims to tackle three main objectives: sustainably increasing agricultural productivity and incomes; adapting and building resilience to climate change; and reducing and/or removing greenhouse gas emissions, where possible’ (FAO, 2019). For example, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture and ‘land use change’ by 50%, produce 50% more nutritious food by 2030 (including by reducing food loss and waste), while strengthening the climate resilience of agricultural landscapes and farming communities. In light of significant climatic challenges, and responding landmark initiatives (most notably the Paris Agreement), significant innovation of the total food supply chain bolstered by advances in digital technologies are increasingly imperative.

Dell Inc. in collaboration with LERO (The Irish Software Research Institute) have initiated a research project to better understand how significant technology players such as DELL can best align and contribute to the Climate Smart Agriculture paradigm. In the initial scoping stage, the project will explore (1) the current customer base leveraging digital technologies for productivity, adaptation and mitigation (2) the current market for CSA technology solutions (3) Dell’s range of capabilities that could be aligned to CSA solutions, and (4) the impact of Dell on agri-economic subsectors. Insights from the scoping phase will inform suitable case selection, that applies a socio-technical lens to understanding technology intervention for CSA.