15th Congress Proceedings
The Emerging Role Of E-agribusiness - State Of The Art And Perspectives In Germany
The aim of this paper is to describe and analyse the emerging role of electronic agribusiness and the corresponding consequences in Germany. The study was carried out as a consecutive step by step procedure, including empirical surveys in farm and agribusiness small and medium size enterprises, accompanied by case studies in agribusiness firms, and a technology assessment expert survey. The results indicate that internet penetration on farm and agribusiness enterprise levels is rather high, but currently information and communication activities clearly dominate over commercial business activities. The case studies show that the internal communication changed significantly due to the implementation of internet applications like emailing, newsgroups, periodic information sheets and video-conferencing. Additionally, external communication changes according to the availability of internet features, e.g. suppliers of parts established internet networks for co-ordinated sales activities. The technology assessment expert survey indicates a gain in importance for pre- and after-sales services and communication activities by using internet technologies. Conclusions are - among others - an increasing importance of e-agribusiness and correspondingly an acceleration of structural change, but low or no expected effects on ecological parameters and on the labour market. Keywords: E-Business, E-Agribusiness, Technology assessment, Survey, Germany.