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16 November 2020 | 8:30 AM CST | 2:30 PM CEST | Global Panel Event

Fireside Chat: Building a Sustainable Appetite for Digital Transformation

More than 500 million smallholder farmers provide 80 percent of the food for communities in Asia, Africa, and South America. Unfortunately, few have the resources they need to feed a growing population and by 2050, the planet is projected to hold nearly 10 billion people. The pressure is on agriculture to not only reimagine innovation, but sustainability, too.


In this fireside chat, Mike Stern, former CEO of The Climate Corporation and Head of Digital Farming for the Crop Science division of Bayer, joins a panel of thought leaders to explore how digital tools and data science can reveal solutions for smallholders. Combining insight with ingenuity, farmers in developing regions are using modern agriculture to transform environmental, economic, and societal sustainability for themselves, and everyone around them.




  • Opening Remarks: Mike Stern

  • Fireside Chat: Mike Stern, APAC Farmer & Arianna Giuliodori

  • Q&A Session: Mike Stern, APAC Farmer & Arianna Giuliodori









Mike Stern

Mike leads a diverse team that develops digital tools to help the world’s farmers understand their fields in ways that have never been possible before. As a member of the Executive Leadership Team for Bayer Crop Science and Head of The Climate Corporation, Mike's role is at the intersection of agriculture and digital technology. Prior to his roles at The Climate Corporation, Mike led Monsanto’s Row Crop Business in the Americas with responsibility for its corn, soy, cotton, specialty crops, licensing and crop protection businesses across the regions. During his tenure at Monsanto, which began in 1988, Stern has served in leadership roles for a variety of its businesses, including: Vice President, U.S. Seeds and Traits; President, American Seeds; CEO of Renessen LLC, a biotechnology joint venture with Cargill; and Director of Technology, Agricultural Productivity.


Arianna Guiliodori

Ms. Arianna Giuliodori was appointed Secretary General of the World Farmers’ Organisation, WFO, in December 2017. After her degree in Communications Sciences, Ms. Giuliodori got a Master in Economics and Rural Development at Siena University in Italy. Farmers and Agriculture have always been part of her working life: she spent 10 years serving at the Italian farmers’ organisation Coldiretti, first in Rome and then in Brussels, acting as Economic Officer, Secretary General of Young Farmers, Head of the President’s Technical Secretariat and finally as Senior Policy Advisor at the European Representation. Four years’ experience in an American multinational research and consulting company in Paris and an executive MBA at Sorbonne University complete her profile, giving her a strong business-oriented approach.


V. Ravichandran

V. Ravichandran (Ravi) is a third-generation farmer in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. He has been farming for over 30 years and is a strong proponent of technology in agriculture. He grows paddy, sugar cane, cotton, pulses, and small grains. Ravi is a member of Global Farmer Network’s Board of Directors.