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Agroecology Futures Regional Forum, 6-8 November 2018, Siem Reap Cambodia

Marquié C., Tivet F., Ferrand P., Reynaud L.. 2018. Siem Reap : CIRAD; GRET, 33 p.. Agroecology Futures Regional Forum, 2018-11-06/2018-11-08, Siem Reap (Cambodge).

The Regional forum on Agroecology Futures represented the closing session of the ACTAE Project1 ¿Toward an agroecological transition in South East Asia¿ funded by AFD (Agence Française pour le Développement). It took place in Siem Reap, Cambodia, on 6th ¿ 8th of November 2018. It has been the biggest event on agroecology in the Mekong Region since the Regional Symposium organized by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in November 2015, in Bangkok, Thailand. Over 260 participants from 21 nationalities gathered to discuss the futures of Agroecology during an unprecedented Regional Forum. The event was co-organized by the General Directorate of Agriculture (GDA) of Cambodia, CIRAD and GRET in a joint effort to promote agroecology. The overall aim of the forum was to build a momentum around the different dimensions of Agroecology that should be addressed, and consolidate a Regional Agroecology stakeholders' coalition by wrapping up the achievements of ACTAE project (Towards an Agroecological Transition in South-East Asia, AFD) and discussing the future of regional initiative in Agroecology. Over 3 days, the participants could learn, share and network through 74 presentations in plenary and parallel sessions, an innovation and knowledge fair (with over 20 booths), a poster session (25 were presented) and a seed swap where more than 60 different plant species were exchanged. Agroecology being diverse and multidimensional, a broad range of issues were addressed such as the fundamental role of crop biodiversity, the highly preoccupying status of agrochemical use in the region, the need for appropriate-scale mechanization, the importance of innovative and participatory intervention mechanisms, the recognition and integration of Indigenous Knowledge, the capacity building of the new generation, the marketing of agroecological products¿ A panel discussion bringing together representatives from AFD, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the Livelihood Trust Fund (LIFT), the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) and the French Embassy highlighted the existing different initiatives for supporting an agroecological transition. Three main take home messages emerged from all the discussions: ¿ The importance to invest in soil health and farmer empowerment, ¿The necessity to seek convergence between land tenure & agroecology and co-produce a credible narrative for a smallholder pathway towards agricultural development, ¿ The challenge posed by commodities-based production systems to an agroecological transition. Lastly, in order to put into practice agroecology, this event was organized in the greener way as possible, choosing an eco-responsible venue, sourcing its coffee and fruits from local organic farms and banning the use of plastic bottles. An assessment of the carbon footprint of the event was carried out and findings were presented. All the presentations are available on the ALiSEA web site: Forum (https://ali-sea.org/agroecology-futures-regional-forum-supporting-the-agroecological-transition-in-the-mekong-region/)

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