Virtual world technologies to enhance climate risk management on Australian sugar cane farms

Reardon-Smith, Kate and Mushtaq, Shahbaz and Stone, Roger and Cliffe, Neil and Farley, Helen and Ostini, Jenny and Doyle, Joanne and Martin, Neil ORCID: and Maraseni, Tek ORCID: and Marcussen, Torben and Loch, Adam and Lindesay, Janette (2014) Virtual world technologies to enhance climate risk management on Australian sugar cane farms. In: Climate Adaptation (NCCARF 2014): Future Challenges, 30 Sep-2 Oct 2014, Gold Coast, Australia.

Slideshow (Published Version)

Download (2MB) | Preview


Improved climate risk decision-making and management in agriculture is critical to the well-being and long-term sustainability of farming communities and future global food security. Decision-making on farms often makes assumptions about seasonal conditions and weather events over the cropping season. Projected climate change and increasing climate variability are likely to pose increasing challenges to the productivity and profitability of farming systems. Hence, better understanding of climate information may improve farmers' ability to plan for climate risk.
Digital technologies offer an important alternative in the delivery and communication of agricultural information, complementing and expanding the reach of conventional face-to-face agricultural extension services, particularly where these are subject to declining levels of investment. Sophisticated digital platforms and their applications in learning environments also offer new opportunities which may influence and significantly enhance agricultural knowledge exchange.
This paper reports on a project undertaken by the University of Southern Queensland's Australian Digital Futures Institute and International Centre for Applied Climate Sciences to develop and evaluate a web-based virtual 'discussion-support' system that integrates climate information with practical farming operations in Australian sugar farming systems. Customized video clips (machinima), created in the Second Life virtual world environment, use lifelike avatar actors to model conversations about climate risk and key farm operational decisions relevant to sugarcane farmers. Designed to be readily available online, this innovative approach is designed to provide more equitable and cost-effective access to targeted climate information as well as improved learning and decision-making opportunities at local, regional, national and even global scales.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 27044
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility 2014. This publication is copyright. It may be reproduced in whole or in part for the purposes of study, research, or review, but is subject to the inclusion of an acknowledgment of the source.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 05 May 2015 02:41
Last Modified: 23 Feb 2017 00:21
Uncontrolled Keywords: machinima; virtual worlds; Second Life; sugarcane; agricultural extension
Fields of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130306 Educational Technology and Computing
07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0701 Agriculture, Land and Farm Management > 070105 Agricultural Systems Analysis and Modelling
08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0801 Artificial Intelligence and Image Processing > 080111 Virtual Reality and Related Simulation
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390405 Educational technology and computing
30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3002 Agriculture, land and farm management > 300207 Agricultural systems analysis and modelling
46 INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES > 4607 Graphics, augmented reality and games > 460799 Graphics, augmented reality and games not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960302 Climate Change Mitigation Strategies

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only