The former ERA-NETs
ICT-AGRI was funded by the European Commission's ERA-NET scheme under the 7th Framework Programme for Research. The objective of an ERA-NET scheme was to develop and strengthen the European Research Area by facilitating practical initiatives to coordinate regional, national and European research programmes in specific fields.
ICT-AGRI-1 began on 1st May 2009 and ran for 65 months until 30th of September 2014. The follow-up project ICT-AGRI-2 started on the 1st of January 2014 and is scheduled to run for 4 years until the end of 2017.
The overall goal of ICT-AGRI was to strengthen the European research within the diverse area of precision farming and develop a common European research agenda concerning ICT and robotics in agriculture, and to follow up with calls based on funds from the participating countries’ national research programmes. The purpose was to pool fragmented human and financial resources, in order to improve both the efficiency and the effectiveness of Europe’s research efforts.
More specifically the objectives of the ERA-NET ICT-AGRI were:
- Mapping and analysis of existing research and future needs
- Development of instruments and procedures for transnational funding activities
- Development of strategic transnational research agenda and programmes
- Establishing and maintaining of international collaborations and networks
ICT-AGRI has a successful record of accomplishment in working with industries and in making novel funding arrangements for novel project calls together with other initiatives. In 2014, ICT-AGRI planned and launched a call (Applications for smart agriculture) together with SmartAgriFood (SAF). SAF is a part of the Future Internet Public-Private Partnership (FI-PPP) program. This call had a budget of approx. 9 million EUR. ICT-AGRI 2 also assisted ESA in its call in 2018. Finally, the last call ICT-AGRI 2 launched in 1 October 2018 together with the ERA-NETs SusAn and ERA-GAS attracted approx.17 million EUR from the participating funding parties.
ICT-AGRI helped to coordinate European research in ICT and robotics and develop a common research agenda based on shared priorities. New technologies are rapidly emerging and are capable of revolutionising farming. ICT-AGRI supported the development and implementation of these new technologies for a competitive, sustainable and environmentally friendly agriculture.
The SRIA reviews the main current and future challenges for sustainable agriculture and agri-food systems as well as the key goals and it describes the state of the ICT and robotics art and trends as well as the current and future challenges of ICT and robotics adoption in agri-food systems.