Agribusiness Master Class
The aim of the Agribusiness Master Class was to develop participants knowledge of principles and practical analytical skills needed to apply market, consumer and value chain research methods to real-world agribusiness problems in developing countries.
The Agribusiness Master Class was attended by 18 participants from Vietnam and 6 participants from regional countries (Cambodia, Lao PDR, Indonesia and the Philippines).
Since completion of the Agribusiness Master Class, participants are now able to:
- Identify and define real-world issues, opportunities and constraints to pro-poor agribusiness development in agri-food value chains in Asia;
- Identify and define relevant and important research questions;
- Understand and apply appropriate methods in consumer research, market research and value chain research;
- Develop and apply appropriate experimental design and sampling methods;
- Develop effective communication, facilitation and data collection skills and methods with consumers, traditional and modern retailers, wholesalers, traders and collectors and farmers;
- Analyse and present results and conclusions; and
- Effectively communicate results and findings both orally and in brief written reports.
Course structure and outline
The Agribusiness Master Class was conducted over three blocks:
Module 1 – Market and Consumer Research: 1st - 7th June, 2014, Hanoi, Vietnam
Module 2 – Value Chain Research: 21st - 27th September, 2014, Hanoi, Vietnam
Module 3 - From Learning to Action: 18th - 20th March, 2015, Danang, Vietnam
The course approach was principles-based and practically orientated, with plenty of hands-on research exercises and real-life case studies, with lots of activities taking place out of the classroom.
A combination of formats were used, with classroom sessions, being supplemented with interesting case studies, field visits, visiting speakers, group discussions and hands-on research in mini-projects. The program was interspersed with input from, short visits to, and activities with local consumers and retailers from traditional markets and modern supermarket, traders, collectors, wholesalers and farmers.
Prior to each block, participants were required to complete some pre-reading, enabling those with more limited experience in agribusiness research to come in on a more level playing field.
Throughout the Master Class participants put the principles and skills they learned into practice as they tackled a mini-projects which addressed some specific issues in local fruit and vegetable value chains. Mini-projects provided participants a chance to consolidate their skills by completing activities at all stages of the research project cycle, from problem definition and data collection to analysis and reporting.
Professor Wendy Umberger, Executive Director of GFAR, was a lead trainer at the Agribusiness Master Classes. Professor Umberger was able to offer participants an international perspective and share insights and experineces from much market and consumer research conducted in Vietnam and SE Asia.