End of August, the 17th congress of the European Association of Agricultural Economists (EAAE) took place in Rennes, France. The EAAE is a world leading association in the field of agricultural economics, food economics and rural development and is also responsible for a variety of journals. Several employees of FiBL are members of the EAAE.
21 September 2023, France: Around 1000 international researchers as well as key stakeholders from policy and the food value chain attended the conference. Over four days, there were presentations of approximately 275 papers and 350 posters covering a vast range of topics.
A delegation of 30 people from the Swiss Federal Office for Agriculture FOAG, ETH Zürich and Agroscope were in attendance, representing research and policy activities that take place in Switzerland. This presented a great opportunity for everyone to network with and learn from the leaders in this field.
There were several dedicated sessions on organic agriculture, which were generally very well attended by a variety of participants who enjoyed a very lively debate.
Charles Rees joined the conference on behalf of FiBL Switzerland and presented his master’s thesis on the effectiveness of action plans for organic farming in Europe. He completed his thesis at FiBL last year in collaboration with ETH Zürich. He also won the Young Scientists Award for it from the Swiss Society for Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology.
Charles Rees said about the congress: “Some of the sessions that were particularly interesting to me, and poignant for the development of our profession as a whole, were on pre-registering research hypotheses, submitting registered reports and machine learning. This is where research is headed, and it is a crucial step for ensuring that we practice open science that reflects the highest levels of integrity.” He further stated that the availability of data had fundamentally changed in recent decades, meaning that understanding and applying suitable applications of machine learning techniques would become more and more important to exploit the age of big data and stay at the cutting edge of science.
The next conference is scheduled to take place in Bonn in August 2026.
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