Facilitation of Innovation Through Technology (FITT)
FITT facilitates use of the most appropriate and current technology by IPM programs and projects and ensures that existing resources are fully leveraged. As technology rapidly changes, the approach must also evolve to best serve and anticipate the needs of the IPM community. This serves a valuable role for the partner programs in monitoring the technology environment, identifying tools that will be useful, bringing these tools to the attention of Center stakeholders, and facilitating their use. In addition to providing advice and IT infrastructure, FITT provides access and user support for applications to facilitate communication, sharing of information, and assist in common research and extension activities.
Invasive species are a constant threat to agricultural, forested, and natural ecosystems. Mitigation of that threat requires directed efforts to detect new invasives, dedicated resources to contain recently introduced pests, coordinated research to develop new management strategies, and timely outreach to help extend the latest information. Limited resources and the wide ranging impact of invasive species requires all organizations to work together and leverage each other efforts. The recent recommendations from the Invasive Species Advisory Committee to the National Invasive Species Council highlight this imperative; specifically:
Facilitate open access to and sharing of invasive species data to improve decision support capacities at all levels of government and in the private sector, including public and private learning institutions;
Support regional and international coordination efforts of federal agencies, states, territories and federally-recognized tribes to prevent the introduction and spread of invasive species;
Promote the development and application of innovative tools and technologies for prompt and effective prevention, eradication, and control of invasive species
- Improve public engagement on the invasive species issue by supporting and expanding existing education and outreach efforts, applying unified messaging and social media platforms
This signature program embraces the need for collaboration and leveraging of resources.
This project aims to engage with Southern Region stakeholders in addressing the pollinator health and protection issue.
- By working with experts and other work group members, our goal is to develop pollinator-friendly planting lists suitable for the Southern regional ecosystems. Many lists are available, but very few are based on scientific research. The Center will help to fill this gap.
- Economic loss from pesticide resistance in the US is estimated at $1.5 billion per year. Utilizing the FITT program better visualizes the geographic scope of known resistance in support of working groups and projects that aim to delineate resistant pest populations. This includes the reporting of potential performance failures, coordinating individuals to troubleshoot application issues, collection of samples for confirmation of resistance, and facilitating communication between growers, extension, researchers, testing labs, and industry representatives.
The term “underserved” deals with the demographic status of and the services that are offered or presented to a particular group. It is a segment of the community that is not currently being served by an organization. Characteristics of Underserved Audiences are: gender, income, socioeconomic status, language, special needs/disability, literacy, ethnicity/race, and geographic location.
In the South, there are a number of audiences with whom the Center has not worked closely nor effectively in the past. The Center would like to better engage specific academic audiences within these communities through a grant writing workshop and mentoring program. Federal programs identify the historically black colleges and universities (1890s) and Hispanic audiences as members of the underserved communities. This program is targeted directly to these communities.