The New Extensionist, 2013

Capacities required at the individual level in Extension and Advisory Services (Table 1, page 8)


Technical Capacities

Good understanding about appropriate / relevant / new technologies / practices / standards / regulations / policies in agriculture and natural resource management.


Some of these technical areas include:

·         Technical options to support climate change adaptation;

·         agri-business, value addition and value chain development;

·         improving resource use efficiency;

·         application of biotechnology;

·         intellectual property and farmer rights;

·         use of new information & communication technologies (ICTs)


Functional Capacities

·         Community mobilization (organizing producers and rural women into different types of interest/activity groups)

·         Farmer organization development (organizing, sustaining and federating

·         Farmer organizations to take up new extension and advisory service tasks in agriculture and linking them to new source of knowledge and services)

·         Facilitation (facilitating discussions, enabling consensus building and joint action, accompanying multi-stakeholder processes)

·         Coaching (guided self-reflection and expert advice for improvement)

·         Reflective learning (organizing experience sharing workshops and facilitating learning)

·         Mediating in conflicts (by improving dialogue and helping to reach agreement)

·         Negotiating (helping to reach a satisfactory compromise or agreement between individuals or groups and developing negotiating capacity among other stakeholders)

·         Brokering (creating many-to-many relationships among the wide range of actors)

·         Networking & partnership development

·         Advocating for changes in policies and institutions

·         Leadership- capacity to inspire and motivate

·         Managing resources (human and financial)

·         Critical thinking

·         Problem solving

·         Self-reflection and learning from mistakes

·         Service mindedness

·         Accountability

·         Responsibility

·         Dedication/commitment

·         Working in multi-organizational and multi-sectoral teams

·         Working with rural women and using gender sensitive extension approaches


Read more about these "New Extensionists" in a recent GFRAS publication (