FSD Smallholder-oriented Data Governance Report

FSD's New Report on Smallholder-oriented Data Governance

We are glad to unveil our Smallholder-oriented Data Governance report. We aim through this report to stir debate and drive consensus among the stakeholders in the data ecosystem of smallholder farmers to lay the foundation for a fair and efficient data governance system.  

Download the report here.


In the report, we define the smallholder data ecosystem as comprising multiple stakeholders with asymmetric power, knowledge, and resource access levels. These stakeholders should handle smallholder farmers’ data responsibly and transparently to empower and avoid harm. Smallholder-oriented data governance requires the more powerful and well-resourced stakeholders to commit to fair treatment and compensation of smallholder farmers. 

The report defines smallholder farmers, informed consent, and a fair data ecosystem. Further, it presents a set of principles that a data governance system should have to ensure fair and sustainable benefit sharing from smallholders' data. The principles should not be interpreted as fixed policies or commandments because their formulations are deliberately broad. Instead, different stakeholders in the smallholder data ecosystem should be able to use these principles when designing smallholder-oriented data-value policies. In addition, the enabling conditions of the principles can be used as a practical tool to create a check-and-balance system in smallholder-oriented data governance. The principles can also be helpful for actors who are not directly involved in data-value exchanges with smallholders, such as consumers and journalists. 

Data Governance Principles

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