Flavio Luna

Ashoka Fellow
Brazil,
Fellow Since 2013

Citation

This profile was prepared when Flavio Luna was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2013.
The New Idea
Recognizing that Brazil’s land reform initiatives were not meeting the needs of newly resettled formerly landless Brazilians, Flávio has developed an ambitious effort initially targeted to transform this segment of the agricultural economy. With SIGA he is creating opportunities for small formerly landless farmers by improving their access to critical markets, technical, business and management information, and training and filling key gaps in the agricultural infrastructure in rural communities. SIGA is a technology-based online information platform that provides critical producer, production and management information, as well as market prices and buyer information.

Flávio’s initiatives create new mechanisms for farmers to share and access information and training, to better manage their agricultural enterprises. This requires shifting the mindsets and practices of both the farmers and the existing extension systems that are ostensibly established to serve these populations. Efforts at building and enhancing the capacity of farmers and the technical advisers who work with them are linked to SIGA, which serves as a mechanism to engage multiple institutional partners and programs, including local, state, and national initiatives that fill key gaps in the agricultural value chain. Not only does this provide crucial pricing information to help farmers’ capture greater product value, but it also connects farmers to one another, and to individuals and small groups of farmers to new markets. SIGA also offers information and tools to reinforce small producer’s cultural practices and build management expertise.

In the process of cultivating these small producers, Flávio seeks to influence Brazilian society’s perception of agrarian reform, at a time when public support toward these policies are declining. To address the needs of the current and formerly landless, Flávio recognizes that agrarian reform initiatives must be sustainable strategies for social and economic development, rather than subsidy-based poverty alleviation. By offering concrete successes in how formerly landless communities engage in the agricultural economy, Flávio’s work demonstrates how land reform benefits landless families, and country development.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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