Created through a collaboration of the Asian Productivity Organization (APO) and the Emerging Markets Program in the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, the program assists executives and managers of agribusiness companies in Asia to meet the challenges they face daily. These include diverse issues such as changing consumer trends, competition in the sector and climate change. Through intensive, week-long workshops, executives are provided the knowledge and skills needed to respond in rapidly changing business environments.
The objective of this training is to enhance participants’ knowledge of recent and emerging developments in global and regional agribusinesses, as well as to introduce them to best practices in agribusiness management. This is conveyed with a focus on food security, sustainability, and competitiveness, specifically emphasizing startups and early-growth SMEs. Participants attend thematic lectures delivered by industry experts and are presented with relevant case studies on food and agricultural SMEs. In addition, they partake in panel discussions, group breakout sessions, and field visits.
This training program can include either a national or international focus, bringing together participants from across the country or continent. For example, internationally-focused workshops have previously been held in Indonesia, China, and Thailand, connecting professionals from APO member countries. Recent national trainings have taken place in Cambodia and the Philippines to enhance domestic agribusiness programs. These workshops create valuable linkages, and have sometimes resulted in APO members visiting Cornell University to study the food industry in the United States. Workshops are also open to local observers from food and agribusiness companies, government departments, and academia, further widening the reach of this executive training.
On the topic of Asian agribusiness development, Secretary-General Hari Priyono of the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture stated, “This dynamic environment poses greater challenges to executives and managers of agribusiness companies in staying competitive. They have to explore new products, business models and even organizational structures that could increase their efficiency ad overall productivity to strengthen their market position” (Cornell-APO, 2017).
View video highlights from the 2019 Indonesia training below, featuring interviews with Dr. Ralph Christy and several regional participants.