The JIAEE is the official refereed publication of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Education. Its purpose is to enhance the research and knowledge base of agricultural and extension education from an international perspective.

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The JIAEE Managing Board is directed by Alexa Lamm, Executive Editor and Todd Brashears, Managing Editor and Kristina Hains, Past Editor.

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From the Executive Editor

 

Hello from chilly Lexington, Kentucky! While you may still be mulling over the great articles published in our final 2020 December issue, we are very excited to share with you the first of two Special Issues being published in 2021. Two years ago, we began publishing a special annual issue (most often in January) that focuses on issues the editorial board feels are pertinent and salient to our practitioners, researchers and readers. For this special issue, we wanted to focus on something that is impacting all of us around the world – the COVID-19 pandemic

We broadened this focus just slightly to include other aspects of disruptive change – pandemics, climate issues and other global crises. Once we sent out the call, what we found was astounding. We learned that many of you are doing research on this topic; as a result, we ended up with an overwhelming answer to our call – so many great submissions, in fact, that we decided to split the accepted submissions into two special issues. Thus, we will be publishing JIAEE 2021 Special Issue #1 in January and follow up with Special Issue #2 in February.

Exclusive to Special Issue #1 are seven articles that address disruptive change in unique ways, in order to call into question how we currently address change, and to push the boundaries of how we should tackle challenging issues in the future. More specifically:

We begin with a Research Note that discusses the COVID-19 crisis, and its impact upon extension organizations. The manuscript then utilizes organizational change theory as a lens to examine how extension organizations innovated during this crisis. 

The Research Feature articles focus on a variety of challenges associated with disruptive change. We begin with two articles focusing on the topic of food security. The first one begins with a discussion on how COVID-19 impacted health and food systems around the world, and how frontline extension professionals can help build assets and capitals, ultimately encouraging community resilience. Our next article continued the focus on food systems; specifically examining the challenge to achieving food security goals around the world, and the role of Extension Advisory Services (EAS), at a stressful time when the world is faced with a pandemic. 

We move on to a distinctive article focusing on Extension’s role within Indigenous communities in the United States. Even though the Cooperative Extension system can be found in all 50 states, presently extension agents can only be found in a small percentage of Indigenous communities, and the author argues the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted how vital Extension programs are to these communities’ survival. 

Rural community resiliency came back as a theme in the next article; this article focuses on five rural communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the unique characteristics of rural community resiliency in the face of crisis. This knowledge was applied through the Community Capitals Framework (CCF) and ultimately could inform health communication and extension education efforts within rural communities around the world. We continue with an article that discusses safety guidelines for the agricultural industry in the United States. Authors suggest that even with challenges, the pandemic offers a variety of opportunities to the agriculture industry on how to revamp operations and adjust approaches for agriculture safety. 

Finally, we end with a research article that focuses on a different disaster – Hurricane Michael. Within this article, the authors utilize a posttraumatic growth inventory to determine impact on individuals of traumatic events. Their findings suggest that females may be more adaptive to traumatic events, as well as more receptive to the potential to perceive positive benefits resulting from traumatic experiences. They finish with the recommendation for agricultural and extension educators to utilize an appreciate inquiry approach when assisting individuals recovering from natural disasters. 

Whether your interest in this special issue is more methodological in nature, or you are looking for practical application, there is something for everyone. Please enjoy these interesting articles, and maybe stretch your thought processes a bit regarding the impact of disruptive change on extension and agriculture education. And finally, as usual, continue doing the great work you do within the field.

Warm Regards

Kristina sign

Kristina D. Hains

Past Editor, JIAEE