Francis Gouillart - Ten Challenges for the Flex/Hybrid Sensors Industry in the Ag-Food Vertical

Plenary 2: Market & Road Maps

Ten Challenges for the Flex/Hybrid Sensors Industry in the Ag-Food Vertical
Tuesday, June 20, 2017 
11:25 AM - 11:50 AM

Francis Gouillart and Steve Whalley,

In their presentation, Francis Gouillart will offer ten starting points for the development of flexible/hybrid sensors for agriculture and food. After laying out those challenges and suggesting some possible areas of application, they will issue a call to action for members of the industry in working with ag and food stakeholders, using a process of ecosystem co-creation they will lay out.

Here are the ten issues confronting the ag and food industry today:

1. The need to provide seed-to-mouth traceability and documentation of sustainable practices: how can sensors and IoT create longitudinal transparency?

2. The tedium of regulatory reporting for farmers and food players: can sensor automation help?

3. Temperature, humidity and light: how can we track those three fundamentals of ag and food throughout the life of the produce?

4. The most dramatic unmet need of the ag-food value chain: will farmers be one day able to flood their fields with super-cheap soil sensors?

5. Responding to the demand for local: how to best track food-miles?

6. The democratization imperative: can we invent precision ag for small farms by engaging nontraditional ag and food players?

7. From produce to cases to pallets: how can we solve  the challenge of tracking produce during storage and transportation?

8. The produce distributor’s core issue: how can we reduce waste by modeling ripeness through sensors?

9. Emulating a chef’s palate: can new-generation hyperspectral and gas sensors help predict taste?

10. The need to “de-commoditize” the agricultural-food market: will blockchain technology be able to convert sensor information and reveal intrinsic value of the produce?


Speaker's Biography

Francis Gouillart initiated and manages the Internet of Tomatoes project in partnership with Analog Devices, Inc., the large semi-conductor company, and, a technology start-up dedicated to the application of blockchain technology to the agriculture and food value chain. The Internet of Tomatoes project is a three-year old Internet of Things and blockchain project that creates a tomato quality index by tracking tomatoes through their life cycle from seed to mouth and enables the development and optimization of local ag-food ecosystems.

In addition to his technology development activities with Analog Devices and, Francis Gouillart is also the founder and CEO of Stock Pot Malden, a shared kitchen incubator for food trucks and food product entrepreneurs dedicated to the development of a healthy, sustainable ag-food chain in greater Boston.

He is also the President of Experience Co-Creation Partnership, a professional services firm that implements co-creation concepts with corporate clients and public organizations around the world. ECC Partnership is the vehicle Mr. Gouillart and his team use for concept development, publication, speeches, management education, workshops, and development of consulting tools.

Mr. Gouillart has personally consulted with many large global organizations in the last 30 years, including Microsoft, Hewlett Packard, DuPont, BASF, Monsanto, ExxonMobil, La Poste, Credit Agricole, Carhartt, Avery Dennison, and Nokia.

He is the author of the book The Co-Creation Edge, Harnessing Big Data to Transform Sales and Procurement for Business Innovation (co-written with Bernard Quancard Palgrave-McMillan, spring 2016). He is also co-author (with Tina Hallett) of the article Co-Creation in Government, published by the Stanford Social Innovation Review in 2015. He also co-wrote (with Douglas Billings) the April 2013 Harvard Business Review article, “Community-Powered Problem Solving.”  He also co-authored (with Venkat Ramaswamy) the book The Power of Co-Creation (Simon & Schuster Free Press, October 2010) and the Harvard Business Review article “Becoming a Co-Creative Enterprise” (November 2010). Mr. Gouillart is also co-author (with James Kelly) of the book Transforming the Organization, published by McGraw-Hill, which reached the top of BusinessWeek’s best-seller list in 1995.

He has an MBA from the University of Chicago – Booth School of Business, and a bachelor’s degree from ESSEC, France.


Francis Gouillart
Experience Co-Creation Partnership (ECCP)