Written by Laura Ramírez, INTA Costa Rica
PLATICAR is a knowledge ecosystem developed in Costa Rica with an ICT for agriculture approach, based on communication for development and knowledge management processes.
It promotes the creation of communities of practice where rural leaders train themselves as knowledge managers and then train others, in a self-managed dissemination process.
The knowledge ecosystem is comprised of:
1. Knowledge Management Centres (Centros de Gestión de Conocimiento - GECO): decentralized hubs in which knowledge and experiences are exchanged, and where planning of solutions and strategies for the problems facing producers take place. They are spaces for face-to-face meetings led by a knowledge manager.
2. Communities of Practice: bring together people with common interests and problems who are searching for collaborative solutions through knowledge management processes and the application of ICTs to strengthen communication and exchanges
3. Web Portal (www.platicar.go.cr): is a combination of services integrated into a digital system. It is designed to facilitate and promote communication between people and the exchange of information and knowledge with the aim of solving agricultural problems.
PLATICAR as an ecosystem model is a powerful tool to understand and organize a multidimensional and multilevel process. It serves as a framework for adapting this process according to each group and the environmental conditions in which it is to be implemented.
The experience of PLATICAR in Costa Rica has also demonstrated the need to use a combination of various tools: it is for this reason that we talk about a knowledge ecosystem, which must be contextualized and adjusted to each locality.
The model has generated a rapid adoption, developing communities of practice, establishing relations and developing new competencies among the producers.
In 2013 PLATICAR won the “Green and Intelligent Costa Rica Awards” of the Cámara de Tecnologías de Información y Comunicación (CAMTIC).
To learn more about PLATICAR please see the Power Point presentation below or read the full article published on Onda Rural (in Spanish)