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Abstract

Climate variability represents a significant risk to farming enterprises. Effective extension of climate information may improve climate risk decision making and adaptive management responses to climate variability on farms. This paper briefly reviews current agricultural extension approaches and reports stakeholder responses to new web-based virtual world ‘discussion-support’ tools developed for the Australian sugar cane farming industry. These tools incorporate current climate science and sugar industry better management practices, while leveraging the social-learning aspects of farming, to provide a stimulus for discussion and climate risk decision making. Responses suggest that such virtual world tools may provide effective support for climate risk decision making on Australian sugar cane farms. Increasing capacity to deliver such tools online also suggests potential to engage large numbers of farmers globally.

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