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Comparative Analysis of Agricultural Extension in Ontario, Yaroslavl Oblast and Crimea

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Title: Comparative Analysis of Agricultural Extension in Ontario, Yaroslavl Oblast and Crimea
Author: Warsame, Warsame J.
Department: School of Environmental Design and Rural Development
Program: Capacity Development and Extension
Advisor: Filson, Glen
Abstract: The Challenges of Agricultural Extension: Globally there has been a growing pressure on the traditional public agricultural extension services to restructure and adapt to new funding constraints and the need of a changing agricultural sector. The century old extension is no longer that of a unified public agricultural extension, but of a multi-institutional network of knowledge and information support for farmers and rural dwellers. Although many countries in the West have almost completed full privatization of agricultural extension services, there is a substantial concern in environmental protection and the availability of impartial information which full private agricultural extension may not provide. On the other hand many countries in the former Soviet Republics are still developing their own models of agricultural extension following the global experience. However, there is lack of enough comparative studies in agricultural extension systems between the West and the Eastern European countries to learn from each other. Therefore, this research is intended to bridge that gap by comparing and contrasting agricultural extension systems in Ontario (Canada), Yaroslavl Oblast (Russia) and the autonomous Republic of Crimea (Former Ukraine). It is hoped that this research will be useful for the policymakers in those three regions all seeking to determine the most effective extension systems to accomplish the need of their respective countries, international professionals engaged in agricultural extension, faculty and students in the field as well other countries that are facing similar challenges and need to act to redefine extension and implement coherent extension policies. Ontario is an ideal research base for this study as the province of Ontario has one of the oldest and most advanced agricultural extension systems in the world and the University of Guelph which is the centre of this research, is located in Guelph, Ontario. Yaroslavl Oblast of Russia was chosen for the research due to its relatively established agricultural extension services compared to other Russian regions and its close proximity to the Federal Training Centre in Moscow’s Timiryazev Agricultural Academy which provides farmer information and advisory services. The Crimean peninsula was chosen because of several factors. Although Crimea was a Ukrainian region, its official language has always been Russian, which enabled me to utilize the same Russian language questionnaires used in Yaroslavl Oblast. This was also beneficial as I am fluent in Russian language and analyzed the Crimean data without the need of translation.
Date: 2015-12
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