The SFIAR has the following goals and objectives:
Sharing information between the stakeholders involved in agricultural research for development (ARD) in Switzerland and encouraging dialogue within this community on different views, interests and perspectives related to ARD.
Promoting the visibility of Swiss agricultural research for development in the international ARD community and in the public.
Playing an advocacy role at both national and international levels by contributing to shape political decisions about ARD.
Serving as a national partner in the European Forum on Agricultural Research for Development (EFARD) and the Global Forum for International Agricultural Research (GFAR), and supporting the aims of these organisations.
Promoting collaboration, synergies and complementarities between different actors involved in international agricultural research in Switzerland.
Membership in SFIAR is open to all institutions and individuals actively involved or just interested in agricultural research for development, especially:
- Research institutions
- Non-governmental organisations (NGOs)
- The private sector
- Farmers' organisations
- Public agencies
- Private individuals
The Forum makes final decisions on membership in cases where questions arise.
The SFIAR network is a continuation of the Swiss Platform on International Agricultural Research, which was launched at the ministerial conference on international agricultural research in Lucerne in 1995.
The SFIAR consists of:
- A president and a vice-president;
- A secretariat;
- An institutional memory (addresses, documents), which is perpetuated along with the secretariat;
- Working groups
The members of the Forum hold a meeting twice a year.
Decisions are taken by consensus.
The president and the vice-president are chosen by the Forum for a period of two years. The vice-president is normally chosen to succeed the president. The president is the official public representative of the Forum. Together with the secretariat he/she prepares the work of the Forum.
The Forum can delegate tasks to working group(s) whenever it is considered appropriate.
The Forum is officially domiciled in the institution where the secretariat is located.
The SFIAR is guided by the following principles:
Subsidiarity: SFIAR becomes involved wherever other actors, especially its own members, are not already active, or well suited for execution of particular activities
Additional benefits as a result of SFIAR intervention
Complementarity and synergies that enhance current work and existing initiatives
Openness to all parties interested in and affected by agricultural research for development
Transparency in SFIAR activities
Collaboration in the form of partnership, based on common interests and mutual benefits