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HARA proudly announces partnership with BOI Research to enrich data from exchange

We are excited to share with you the details on our newly formed partnership with BOI Research. Not only does this mark a huge milestone for both BOI Research and HARA, but it also illustrates the huge potential and need for reliable data from the food and agriculture sector.

About BOI Research

(Left to Right) Ingmar van den Brink, Co-Founder of BOI Research, and Dian Irawati, Director of BOI Research

BOI Research is a market research agency, focusing on customer research, feasibility studies, and research support. BOI Research was founded in 2010 by Ingmar van den Brink and Dian Irawati and is based in Indonesia, but also has clients and projects in the Netherlands and Southeast Asia. The food and agriculture sector is one of the company’s main fields of research. In that field, BOI Research has conducted studies for high-profile clients like the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Burger King, NewForesight, Wageningen University & Research, and Sogo.

“What we try to become as a company is the trusted provider of data and insights for companies in Indonesia.

We see that there is a lot of inaccurate data available in Indonesia, so in our opinion there is a big need for more accurate and more reliable data, and we try to fill that gap.”

Ingmar van den Brink, Co-founder of BOI Research

Why BOI Research and HARA?

The partnership between BOI and HARA will focus on solving problems in the agriculture sector that originate from a lack of available data. For example, financial institutions have great difficulties in extending their services to areas and people they have no data on. Even where data is available, the accuracy is below par. BOI has already been contracted to resolve issues like these in the past by doing their own research, but van den Brink thinks HARA will be a game changer in that field.

What I think HARA can actually provide is information on what’s happening on a much bigger scale. So per province, per area, already gave the information: this is happening now, on the ground, with or without your projects,” van den Brink comments.

“So the ambition and scope of the project is quite overwhelming. Having direct data from multiple regions in Indonesia, which is regularly updated and can be verified — that’s impressive because we don’t have that.”

The Partnership

Ingmar van den Brink, Co-Founder of BOI Research

BOI Research will enrich the data that is derived from the HARA platform. Starting with data from the food and agriculture sector, BOI Research will analyze the raw and unstructured data from the HARA platform and turn it into valuable research reports for the whole sector.

“What we‘re trying to get through HARA is to make reports that we presume will be helpful for our clients in making the right decisions. That applies not only to Indonesia, but also to other parts of South East Asia.”

For instance, the research could show the potential of the market for agriculture input suppliers in a specific area. The reports will also be directly uploaded to the HARA data exchange and be available for purchase by all data buyers.

“Lots of companies, organizations, and NGOs now need to work with estimates made by the government or other NGOs. They are not bad per se, but they are usually extrapolated from research that happened in the distant past. It doesn’t take into account the changes over time and what is happening on the ground now.”

“It is a logical extension of what we do actually, and it will save us a lot of time in getting accurate data from the whole agricultural sector in Indonesia.”

BOI Research line of services

The research reports that BOI is going to create based on the HARA data will be a valuable asset to the data exchange ecosystem. While a number of BOI’s clients are interested in seeing the raw data as well, most prefer to receive a summary of the findings in conjunction with conclusions and recommendations they can act on.

“From what we see, not all of our clients can work with raw data. We need to help translate them so it becomes more actionable,” van den Brink says.

BOI envisions to create three different types of research reports that they will contribute to the HARA data exchange. Apart from creating reports based on HARA data alone, BOI also plans to combine the HARA data with data from secondary sources. Finally, a third type of report will combine the data from HARA with BOI’s own fieldwork.

“The scope of HARA is very big, but it has its own limitations. We see that some of our clients want to know everything — how much is going to fertilizer, how much is going to seeds, how much is going to pesticides, everything.”

“So the third thing that we are going to offer is our traditional interviews with smallholders and stakeholders within the production chain.”

Unique insights are now in reach

Ingmar van den Brink, Co-Founder of BOI Research discussing about the partnership

BOI is one of a very small number of research companies that actually focuses on talking to farmers. During their years of operation, they have talked to farmers from all areas in the food and agriculture sector; from fisheries to dairy producers, to rice farmers wading up and down their paddies. Most of them fall under the category of smallholder farmers.

“Doing this kind of research is quite challenging because you have to go to very distant and remote areas,” argues van den Brink.

The logistics required to reach these rural areas is at the moment cost prohibitive for most research organizations. Unfortunately, this leads to there being less data available to help design and set up projects and implement programs with the aim to improve the lives of those that need it most.

“For Indonesia, smallholders are a big part of the agricultural sector. They comprise more than 95 percent of all farmers in Indonesia. And they are really small,” van den Brink frowns, “NGOs and also companies like BOI do our best help, but not all farmers are helped.”

“The nice thing about working with HARA data and secondary data is that it will suddenly become very affordable. With HARA it becomes suddenly in the reach of most organizations, not only the big ones.”

Not only is HARA expected to lower the cost to acquire the data that can be the basis of creative solutions that will help improve the lives of billions of smallholder farmers, it is also set to directly affect the smallholder farmers that participate in its data exchange ecosystem by rewarding them for all the data they enter.

“It’s really little what these people earn,” van den Brink frowns, “I hope that HARA might change that a little bit. Helping out smallholders to get a little bit more, it’s a nice way to give back.

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