Project - Towards a Data-Driven Agriculture Sector in Jamaica

Caribbean Open Institute
Purpose / Problem / Opportunity
Agriculture continues to be a critically important significant sector in the Jamaican economy. It represents 9% of Gross Domestic Product and employs close to 19% of the Jamaican population. However, while the agriculture value chain is acutely sensitive information availability, limited resources constrain public agencies’ ability to collect, maintain and supply the high quality data assets necessary to effective operation the sector. This result is data gaps that inhibit effective service delivery and information asymmetries that disadvantage the most vulnerable sector contributors.

This initiative will seek to demonstrate the impact of an agriculture sector data partnership to overcoming these structural challenges in data access and management. Applying emergent best practice around government digital services this initiative will facilitate a shared data commons that lowers the barriers to accessing agricultural data, while sharing the costs of data collection and maintenance across multiple participating agencies and information services.
Project Scope / Description
Over the last two years, the Rural Agricultural Development Authority, the SlashRoots Foundation and the Mona School Of Business & Management have collaborated to explore how open data principles could be applied to the most pressing challenges in Jamaican Agriculture sector. Central to this work has been need to overcome structural constraints in resource availability and scale necessary to catalyzing a more data-driven agricultural sector in Jamaica.

This strategic initiatives seeks to apply emergent best practice on government digital services and an evolving theory of change for how data collaborations facilitated by shared open infrastructure can enable access to and the creation of high quality agricultural data assets and information services. The outcomes of the initiative would aid in the closing of existing data gaps, improve the information available to actors throughout the agricultural sector and exploring the implications an increasing digital and connected public service on data privacy and ownership.
Countries Impacted
Date Started
November 2, 2015
Date Completed
September 30, 2016
Open Data Sources
The key resource for this project is the RADA Agricultural Business Information System (ABIS). This includes data on farmer registration, farm properties, production and crop schema information.
Project URL
Status Updates