icon pdf Report of the Country Fora side event (pdf 807KB)


Country or National Forums (CFs) have become key institutional arrangements and building blocks of the Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS) and its regional networks. The CF are the institutional structures under which stakeholders in each country can work together to influence the reforms and implementation of RAS context and through which they could share information and discuss relevant issues. They will also provide stakeholders with a space within which they can identify priority areas to be addressed through collaborative information sharing, joint activities and partnerships.

The general objectives of the CF are: (i)  strengthen the capacity of RAS stakeholders at country level to lead Agricultural Extension and Advisory Services (AEAS) development, (ii) mobilize, reflect and learn how to improve RAS provision within an agricultural innovation system framework, (iii) act as the arm of the country’s Agricultural framework implementing organs , (iv)  utilize (within and between countries) and develop the human capacity needed for undertaking reforms in RAS.

The CF origin, history, organization and activities are very diverse. Therefore, AFAAS and RELASER are organizing a side event during the GFRAS annual meeting in Berlin -Germany to enhance south-south dialogue, learning and to explore further collaboration focusing on the concept of CF.


  • To exchange experiences on the establishment, purposes, and functioning of different CF
  • To develop a common understanding on the concept of the country forums as key institutional structures that bring together all RAS at National, Sub regional and Regional levels as a community.

Expected Outputs

  • Common understanding on the CF developed and areas of refinement for each country forum identified.
  • Crosscutting issues, replicable experiences and possible ideas to take forward as a group identified.

Date, Time and Place: September 23th, 8h30 - 13h00 Hotel The Park Inn by Radisson

Main Organizers: RELASER & AFAAS  

Participants: Approximately 40 people, comprising regional network representatives from all the GFRAS networks and other affiliate partners (farmer organizations and private sector). We shall make an effort, personally if necessary, on inviting other networks to join. 

Agenda of the event

  • Introduction from the perspective of Regional Networks: AFAAS and RELASER focusing on history, purpose and structures (options  that exist in regards to their governance and membership, key roles and activities of the CF, and their sustainability) - 1 representative each from AFAAS and RELASER / 10 minutes each
  • Present experiences from CF: how have they transformed with time, organizational structures, membership, main activities, mechanisms for vertical and horizontal exchange and experience sharing, major challenges and expectations from the Regional Networks. Regional networks should be encouraged to share relevant experiences. - 40 minutes in total, with each taking about 10 minutes, 2 slides
  • Workgroup: Present a scenario for regional groups to conduct a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) on one aspect of the performance of current Forums and for the potential creation of new ones.  Later we can from inter-regional groups work on
  • Take home lessons: identified during the sessions and develop concrete ideas to follow up / 30 Minutes

Lead /Contact persons

  • María Isabel Paredes
    RIMISP - Centro Latinoamericano para el Desarrollo Rural
    RELASER - Red Latinoamericana para Servicios de Extensión Rural
    Pasaje Guayas E3-130 y Amazonas - Piso 1. Quito - Ecuador
    Tel: + 5932 2273991 / 2273870 / 96050459
    Website: -  www.rimisp.org  and- www.relaser.org
  • Max Olupot
    African Forum for Agricultural Advisory Services
    Plot 22A, Nakasero Road,  P.O.  Box 34624 Kampala 
    Tel: +256 782-848225 / +256758-848225
    Website: www.afaas-africa.org