The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR or FIRe) is characterized by the fusion of technologies in the physical,digital, and biological worlds, making it fundamentally different from past revolutions that freed humans from animal power, made mass production possible, and gave people digital capabilities. Part of this revolution are artificial intelligence, robotics, the Internet of Things, drones, 3D printing, 5G wireless network, and nanotechnology. The World Economic Forum (WEF) describes these technologies as disrupting almost every industry or sector (WEF,2018), and that includes the agriculture, fishery, forestry, and natural
resources (AFFNR) sectors. While millions of jobs are expected to be wiped out, the 4IR also offers opportunities to produce cleaner and safer food in more efficient and precise ways that put less stress on the environment and give more options to buy inputs, sell outputs,and enhance information access.
Given these,in what ways can extension and advisory services (EAS) creatively respond to 4IR so that we can maximize and optimize opportunities and avoid pitfalls? How can EAS ensure
sustainability and inclusive rural development to ensure nobody is left behind? These questions elicit anticipation as this year's PhilEASNet Symposium engages extension professionals/academics and practitioners nationwide on expectations of the impacts of 4IR that is evolving at an exponential pace.
The symposium also presents an opportunity to collectively prepare us for these challenges and
use the strength of extension and advisory services to harness the benefits associated with this inevitable change.
Lastly, the symposium continues to provide the avenue for sharing of and learning from
good EAS practices and research.