The Platform’s 2018 convention has these 3 key objectives

The 2018 CGIAR Big Data in Agriculture Convention is taking place on 3 -5 October at the World Agroforestry Center in Nairobi, Kenya. Here are the 3 key outcomes the Platform is hoping for during the event.

The 2018 CGIAR Big Data in Agriculture Convention in Nairobi provided an opportunity for agricultural scientists to come together with their counterparts from the world of data science to brainstorm ideas for applying the tools big data to agriculture.

During the event, the Platform is hoping to achieve the following outcomes.


Organize big data

The sheer volume, multiplicity, and variability of big data makes the organization one of the main challenges that need to be overcome. There is a need to find solutions for challenges in the big data ecosystem around issues on storage, usage, and dissemination of this data for agricultural use.

The Convention brings together players to facilitate the development of FAIR Open Data Principles, therefore making Big Data more Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Re-usable (FAIR) for users not only in the agricultural space but also in other areas of application.

Convene big data users

There are several partners in the agricultural space who are using big data in one way or another. The vast majority are business organizations but the forum also includes policy makers, NGOs, and government agencies.

All of them bring value to the table and hence the convention offers them an opportunity to network with like-minded individuals and organizations. Some of the avenues used for networking at the Convention are the tool exchange sessions; sharing horror stories, panel discussions, and speeches. Subsequently, this collaboration should encourage the growth of the big data sector in agriculture.

Inspire action in the big data ecosystem

Agriculture is just one of the potential applications for big data. Even then, the convention might just touch the tip of the iceberg on the various ways Big Data can be utilized in the industry. A lot of work needs to be done for the industry to grow and hence the forum is designed to spark action that will lead towards it.

The organizers hope that the collaboration born of the event will lead to valuable developments in the sector. Furthermore, participants in the convention will be informed about new tools and ways they can use big data for their own applications. Such actions will lead to further growth in agriculture’s big data ecosystem.


The ultimate goal of the CGIAR Platform for Big Data in Agriculture is to harness the capabilities of big data to accelerate and enhance the impact of international agricultural research. Under three key pillars – Organize, Convene and Inspire – the platform will provide global leadership in organizing open data, convening partners to develop innovative ideas, and demonstrating the power of big data analytics through inspiring projects.

Oct 2, 2018

Atula Owade

Youth in Data media delegate at Platform's 2018 Convention

This is one of a series of blogs written by one of our Youth in Data media delegates who participated in the 2nd Big Data in Agriculture Convention in Nairobi, Kenya on 3-5 October 2018.