AIAEE Professional Development Core Group

The AIAEE professional development core group was instituted in 2013 to contribute to the mission of AIAEE through professional development for members. The core group has activities between conferences and presents the work at the AIAEE conference.


The professional development core group contributes to the AIAEE mission as outlined in the preamble to the constitution:

The Association for International Agriculture and Extension Education (AIAEE) is an organization dedicated to developing new programs in agricultural and extension education and improving or strengthening existing programs and institutions of education to have a positive impact on development efforts worldwide. The AIAEE shall work toward improving the understanding of agricultural and extension education in different international settings among public and professional groups concerned with development. The AIAEE shall maintain liaison and working relationships with such groups and institutions and shall provide a medium for the exchange of ideas and information relating to programs of international agricultural and extension education.

Specifically, the group will help to meet the following constitutional objectives:

    • To foster acquaintance, fellowship, and understanding among members and to serve as a vehicle for exchange of ideas, philosophy, and professional materials to establish international agricultural and extension education as a profession.
    • To cooperate with other organizations and groups toward adequate preparation of persons for educational tasks and positions in international agricultural and extension education. 

2013-2014 Core Group Topic: The “New” Extensionist

The new extensionist is a global view of extension and advisory services (EAS) that reinvents and clearly articulates the role of EAS in the rapidly-changing rural context. It argues for an expanded role for EAS within agricultural innovation systems (AIS) and development of new capacities at different levels. What is new is not necessarily the competencies needed by individuals, but the expanded role of EAS envisaged here and the focus on organizational and system level capacities. The new extensionist vision implies changes in EAS organisations, systems, and enabling environments, plus reskilling all types of individuals to better contribute to increasing the productivity and effectiveness of agricultural systems to improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers.

The professional development core group will help membership understand what the new extensionist is and how extension is a critical part of the wider agricultural innovation system. Participants will gain knowledge on the core capacities needed at all levels for agricultural extension and education to work better to respond to the rapidly changing context.

Activities 2013-2014

Event 1 - Webinar: Overview of the “New” Extensionist (December 2013)

Leader: GFRAS, Njala University and the University of Pretoria

Outcome: Understanding of the new extensionist and new competencies needed

Event 2 - Webinar: Individual core capacities (March 2014)

Leader: University of the West Indies

Outcome: Understanding of the key (prioritized) competencies needed for extension education

Event 3 - Webinar Operationalizing core competencies (April 2014)

Leader: University of Minnesota Extension

Outcome: Focusing on extension educator’s core competencies though thorough appraisal: Promotion and Annual Reviews

Event 4: Face-to-face professional development session in Miami (April-May 2014)

Leader: To be decided

Outcome: By the end of this session participants will have a greater understanding of the “new” extensionist, the core competencies necessary for rural advisors, and will focus on increasing knowledge and skills in one core competency via case studies and small group work.

Activities 2013-2014

Event 1 - Webinar: CORE Competencies in Action (October 2014)

Leader: University of Minnesota Extension (Host) and the University of Pretoria

Outcome: How to institutionalize CORE competencies needed to be an effective Rural Advisor

Core group members (in alphabetical order)

  • Andrea Bohn, USA, Modernizing Extension and Advisory Services
  • Virginia Cardenas, Philippines, University of the Philippines Los Banos
  • Kristin Davis, Switzerland, Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services
  • David Dolly, Trinidad & Tobago, University of the West Indies (UWI)
  • Adolphus Johnson, Sierra Leone, Njala University
  • Renee Pardello, USA, University of Minnesota Extension
  • Fanie Terblanché, South Africa, University of Pretoria


Get involved: If you are interested in participating in the professional development core group,contact David Dolly,This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or Renee Pardello This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


For more information: http://www.g-fras.org/en/activities/the-new-extensionist

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