European agriculture experienced huge changes in last decades. Adaptations to institutional, production and marketing changes, influenced by EU common agricultural policy, but also societal wishes like food safety, animal welfare and the environment, require ability to apply entrepreneurial skills as a key factor for survival.
Many authors studied on entrepreneurship in agriculture, agricultural entrepreneurs competences and their ability to adapt to changing economic realities. It was observed that strategic thinking is rarely present in the case of farms. Agricultural producers, focused on operational decisions taken “by the day” often do not see the need for the vision for their company in a strategic perspective, the long-term. This is even more the case with farmers in less favourable rural areas, in general with small scaled farms. To built a future in these areas asks for entrepreneurial competencies.
Entrepreneurship deals more with strategic issues than management, which focuses more on operational and tactical decisions. Craftsmanship and management can be learned more easily than entrepreneurship; the first two aspects have a more technical or procedural character, whereas entrepreneurship involves a lot of ‘special’ skills of the farmer like communication and risk management, and competencies like leadership, taking initiatives, openness to signals from society, vision, creativity, self-reflection, and so on.
The entrepreneur is the one who makes decisions and his attitude and behavior are therefore crucial to the success or failure of his business.
The main purpose of this web and project is to spread an idea of strategic thinking in agriculture and introduce innovative tools to support farm advisors and farmers in entrepreneurship and strategic management process.