Strengthening the performance of farming system groups: Perspectives from a Communities of Practice framework application

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


© 2015 Taylor & Francis. Farming system groups are fast emerging as key players in the generation and sharing of farmer relevant information in agriculture. These are groups of farmers who, in association with broader agricultural industry members, are involved in conducting locally relevant research and extension activities. The strength of these groups to a large extent depends on the voluntary cooperative participation of growers in group activities. This paper draws on case studies of farming system groups in Western Australia and applies the Communities of Practice (CoP) framework to understand their role and effectiveness in addressing the information needs of growers. The paper adopts the CoP model to study and analyse the emergence, evolution and role of the groups as farmer learning structures and discusses aspects that could play a key role in impacting their effectiveness. The results highlight that community-based local groups are more effective at impacting member engagement in group activities and more readily serve the specific information needs of farmers. Large geographically dispersed groups on the other hand need more effort in terms of connecting members, promoting interactions, building interpersonal relationships, ensuring members to understand and support a clear and defined joint enterprise and meeting a broad range of information.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-230
JournalInternational Journal of Sustainable Development and World Ecology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015


Dive into the research topics of 'Strengthening the performance of farming system groups: Perspectives from a Communities of Practice framework application'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this