Six fascinating talks exploring digital technology, agriculture and social change

Bonney et al., 2014

Photo credit: Bonney et al., 2014

The digital transformation of agriculture and other sectors has been occurring for a while now but there is much potential still to be discovered. These video resources not only discuss new ways digital technology can be harnessed but the challenges we face in utilising Information and Communications Technology for broader social change.


  1. Food Tank Webinar Series: Digital Agriculture with David Bergvinson

Danielle Nierenberg, co-founder of Food Tank, talks to Dr. Bergvinson on creating equitable opportunities for smallholder farmers to realize their full potential by utilising digital technology (mobile, cloud computing, social media, and big data analytics) along the agriculture value chain.

  1. TEDx: How can Digital Agriculture Feed Nine Billion People

Jim Ethington, technologist and entrepreneur with 15 years of experience building data analytics and machine learning products, discusses how the use of big data can help solve world hunger problems. For the last 6 years, Jim has been focused on the problem of how we can apply data science to farming. As the VP of Product at The Climate Corporation, he leads product design and development for a suite of products that provide insights and recommendations to farmers that help them to grow crops more efficiently and effectively.

  1. TEDx: Why digital transformation has little to do with technology!

Tobias Burkhardt, founder of the SHIFTSCHOOL for digital transformation, talks about our fears over an increasingly digital future. Exponential computing power and intelligent algorithms drive human productivity into another dimension and new technologies disrupt long established business models before lunch. He explores why only a small digital elite sees the potential while the majority of people are either afraid, ignorant or overconfident when it comes to a digital future. He explains that the answer is deeply routed in our middle class intellectual way of thinking of how to educate our children and how to live a successful life. It is not the technology but our mindsets that threaten our future wellbeing.

  1. The shape-shifting future of the mobile phone

In this short demo, Fabien Hemmert, a design researcher, imagines one future of the mobile phone — a shape-shifting and weight-shifting handset that “displays” information non-visually. It’s a delightfully intuitive way to communicate.

  1. TEDx: Mobilizing social change: innovations in mobile technology

Globally, mobile technology is being used to encourage sustainable business and connect people, but it is also solving problems in health, finance and agriculture in emerging economies? Christèle Delbé, Head of Sustainability for Enterprise at Vodafone Group, shares her expertise in leading transformative change through innovations in mobile technology, answering the questions how does mobile technology work, why are companies doing it and what are the challenges?

  1. TEDx: How technology and emerging trends are impacting lives

Herbert Thuo talks about his love for technology and emerging mobile money tools and the rapid adoption of such innovations across East Africa to drive social change and impact the lives of millions for the better. Herbert, originally from Nairobi, Kenya, is the Chief Marketing Officer of Virtual City, which utilizes simple mobile tools to improve traceability and reduce fraud along agricultural value chains across East Africa through their product Agrimanagr. Agrimanagr is an affordable mobile data management service marketed to agricultural cooperatives and processors that tracks agricultural output from farmer to processor and has so far done this for over 300,000 small holder farmers across East Africa.



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