Data Driven Technologies in the Primary Sector: The Case of Precision Agriculture

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Although a still relatively new phenomenon, several definitions of precision agriculture are in use today: they generally refer to an all-encompassing farm management approach employing a broad range of technologies to provide data-based decision support, backed-up up by real-time data from the field. As shown in the case studies presented in this document, precision agriculture represents an attractive business opportunity for different technology providers including both established technology companies, as well as a number of more innovative organizations, such as agri-tech startups: the former are turning to precision agriculture to consider new marketplaces and expand their offering, while the latter are rapidly expanding thanks a series of successful private and public funding initiatives thus acting as a powerful innovation factor in a sector traditionally characterized by relatively low levels of IT penetration.

Nevertheless, the advantages obtained through precision agriculture technologies come at a price: based on the integration of different technologies, precision agriculture requires the seamless combination and interoperability of vast amount of data; this, in turn, triggers the need for new skills and competences among which computer science, engineering, and analytics techniques, which are not easy to find in the traditional agricultural sector. Also, given the large number of entrepreneurial ventures and small, innovative companies involved in precision agriculture, accurate partnering choices and careful networking activities are necessary to muster the financial and technological resources which are required to successfully fulfil agricultural operations today. More at:

IDC & Open Evidence, Data Driven Technologies in the Primary Sector: The Case of Precision Agriculture, European Data Market Study, February 2016.