CSISA in India

In India, CSISA activities focus on areas of the eastern Indo-Gangetic Plains dominated by small farm sizes, low incomes and comparatively low levels of agricultural mechanization, irrigation and productivity. Project hubs are located in Bihar, eastern Uttar Pradesh and Odisha.

The project partners with the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, the State Departments of Agriculture, national-level initiatives, livelihoods programs, state agricultural universities, NGOs and private sector entities including agricultural machinery manufacturers, dealers and local service providers.

CSISA’s core interventions in India include:

CSISA_Phase_III_India

CSISA locations in India (click to enlarge)

  1. Directly-sown rice (DSR) to address labor and energy constraints to precision rice establishment
  2. Strengthening the foundations of agro-advisory through knowledge organization and data integration
  3. Building precision nutrient management approaches around established and emerging scaling pathways
  4. Income-generating maize production in neglected hill and plateau ecologies
  5. Rice-fallows development in coastal Odisha
  6. Increasing the capacity of National Agricultural Research and Extension Systems (NARES) to conduct participatory on-farm technology evaluations
  7. Integrated weed management to facilitate sustainable intensification transitions in rice
  8. Accelerating the emergence of mechanized solutions for sustainable intensification
  9. Coping with climate extremes in rice–wheat cropping systems

News

  • Experts Identify Policy Gaps in Fertilizer Application in India

    A farmer in Ara district, Bihar state, applies NPK fertilizer, composed primarily of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. (Photo: Dakshinamurthy Vedachalam, CIMMYT) The application of fertilizers that do not meet the nutrient requirements (i.e. balanced nutrient application) of target crops is a widespread problem in India. Farmers overuse urea (N) and seldom apply secondary nutrients (Sulphur, Calcium, and Magnesium) and micro-nutrients (like Zinc, Iron, Copper, Boron, Molybdenum and Manganese) in their plots. This imbalanced application of nutrients affects both long-term health of the soil as well as farmers’ own net incomes from agriculture. How do we deploy scientific research, ...

  • Maize Farmers’ Groups: A Mechanism to Facilitate Strong Market Linkages

    Aggregated final produce of small maize farmers ready to be shipped in Odisha, India. (Photo: Jitendriya Jena) Since 2013, the Cereal Systems Initiative for South Asia (CSISA) has been sustainably intensifying kharif maize cultivation in a rainfed ecology on the north-central plateau of Odisha, India, in Mayurbhanj and Keonjhar districts. Through the promotion of better-bet agronomy (e.g., suitable hybrids, line planting, nutrient and weed management), maize yields of adopter farmers in Mayurbhanj and Keonjhar can reach 5.4 t/ha, up from an average of 2.5 t/ha. In collaboration with the Odisha State Department of Agriculture, CSISA scaled up sustainable intensification practices on ...

  • Soil Intelligence System for India Launched

    K.V. Naga Madhuri, Principal Scientist for Soil Science at Acharya N. G. Ranga Agricultural University (front), explains soil spectra during the opening of the soil spectroscopy lab at the Regional Agricultural Research Station in Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh. (Photo: Dakshinamurthy Vedachalam, CIMMYT) The Soil Intelligence System (SIS) for India, a new $2.5 million investment by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will help the states of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Odisha rationalize the costs of generating high-quality soil data while building accessible geospatial information systems based on advanced geostatistics. The SIS initiative ...

  • Strategic, evidence-based policy: Launching a policy experiment with the Government of Odisha

    The Central Government of India has invested US$ 148.74 billion in the fiscal year 2017–18 to support agricultural development in the country. However, these investments are often unable to target the most relevant needy areas or populations due to lack of concrete evidence of their effectiveness. To support the inclusion of scientific evidence in policy-making processes, CSISA discussed with the Government of the state of Odisha the need for co-generating evidence and for its endorsement to launch a policy experiment on rice-fallow intensification and mechanization options during the 2018–19 Rabi ...

  • Partnering with India’s KVK system to improve data collection and diagnostics

    In India, the Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) network was established in 1974 to serve as district-level “farm science centers” tasked with conducting on-farm tests of agricultural technologies, implementing frontline demonstrations, conducting need-based training programs, serving as local knowledge centers and supporting the marketing of locally relevant agricultural technologies. The KVK system, now comprising 680 KVKs, is overseen by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and administered by a group of 11 agricultural technology application research institutes. The KVK is the largest countrywide network that caters to the needs of ...


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