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The alliance approach to innovation: Agro-ecological innovations, alliance, and agency

Parrot L., Keleher L.. 2017. Ethique et Economique, 14 (1) : p. 35-50. Conférence Internationale de Philosophie Economique. 3, 2016-06-15/2016-06-16, Aix-en-Provence (France).

Agro-ecological innovations aim at promoting sustainable agricultural practices that have long term benefits. However, farmers rarely adopt beneficial innovations in agro-ecology despite expressing an understanding of the benefits and a desire to do so. It has been argued that the farmers lack sufficient knowledge to implement complex innovations. We believe that in many cases such knowledge is necessary, but is ultimately insufficient for complex innovation adoption. We argue that in addition to knowledge and a desire to adopt an innovation, many farmers require a collaborative relation with an ally. We call this method the Alliance Approach to innovation. This approach is modeled after the therapeutic Alliance Approach at work in cognitive and behavioral sciences. We argue that using the Alliance Approach will not only prove effective in helping farmers adopt complex agro-ecology innovations, but also a better fit for the human centered development of capability approach human development, as it is likely to enhance both the well-being and agency of the farmers.

Mots-clés : adoption de l'innovation; agroécologie; méthode; comportement humain; Éthique

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