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von Liewen Wistrand, Elin, 2022. Managing testbeds for accelerating a sustainable transformation of the agri-food system : a multiple case study about the management of two Swedish testbeds for digital farming technologies. Second cycle, A2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Economics



Digital farming technologies are predicted to contribute with solutions to some of the grand challenges the agri-food sector is currently facing, such as feeding a growing population, ensuring food safety and improving sustainability performance in food production. While testbeds are identified as important sites where digital technologies are developed, a paucity of research considers the management of testbeds for digital technologies in the food and farming sector. This study aimed to contribute to understanding the management of testbeds developing digital farming technologies and management implications for the upscaling of digital farming technologies beyond testbeds. A qualitative multiple case study was performed on two testbeds for IoT solutions, one focused on dairy farming and one on pig farming. 4 open-ended, semi-structured interviews were conducted. Further data was collected through documents, web pages, and reports. The findings showed that external funding for testbeds is short-term, fragmented, and projects based, leading to limited resources in terms of capital, time, and workforce. Furthermore, the testbeds are used for demonstration purposes to showcase emerging technologies rather than for learning about the technology. Moreover, the plans to scale up technology beyond the testbed involve contradicting expectations between project stakeholders. Thus, managing the multiple and sometimes diverse expectations among stakeholders is an important management practice. In conclusion, coordination of testbed initiatives with more long-term timeframes should be a management priority to give the testbeds a more strategic role in testing emerging technologies that can resolve sustainability challenges in the agri-food industry. In such instances, it is also important to include a more diverse group of participants in testing and learning about emerging technology. This means that it is not only researchers who should participate in testbeds, but also farmers, agricultural advisors, and other relevant industry actors that can make valuable contributions to the research in testbeds and thus shape the innovation trajectory closer to applicable innovation.

Main title:Managing testbeds for accelerating a sustainable transformation of the agri-food system
Subtitle:a multiple case study about the management of two Swedish testbeds for digital farming technologies
Authors:von Liewen Wistrand, Elin
Supervisor:Langendahl, Per-Anders
Examiner:Ferguson, Richard
Series:Examensarbete / SLU, Institutionen för ekonomi
Volume/Sequential designation:1460
Year of Publication:2022
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:NM005 Environmental Economics and Management - Master's Programme 120 HEC
Supervising department:(NL, NJ) > Dept. of Economics
Keywords:Digital farming technologies, Agriculture 4.0, Testbeds, Transitions theory, Multilevel Perspective, Strategic niche management
Permanent URL:
Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Agricultural economics and policies
Deposited On:30 Nov 2022 09:34
Metadata Last Modified:01 Dec 2022 02:00

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