The International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) signed a four-year agreement with the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), Government of India, for collaborative work through the Cereal Systems Initiative for South Asia (CSISA) Phase III on 30 June 2016 in New Delhi.
The partnership will focus on sustainable intensification and strengthening extension systems to improve the productivity and income of smallholder farmers in eastern India. “In India, current production trends indicate that long-standing farming recommendations need to be reviewed and potentially revised through participatory research,” highlighted R.K. Malik, CSISA India Country Coordinator and Senior Agronomist, CIMMYT. “Through this collaboration, we aim to bring the Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) to the forefront of conducting quantitative participatory research which will drive location-specific extension recommendations and investment priorities that are mainstreamed through the State Departments of Agriculture in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Odisha.”
The organizations will conduct collaborative research to evaluate and refine existing management recommendations for farmers through KVKs; to quantify the near and long-term effects of sustainable intensification technologies at the Research Complex for the Eastern Region (RCER) and the National Rice Research Institute (NRRI); to improve precision nutrient management recommendations through soil scanning technologies; and develop innovative training and communication approaches that help translate science into actionable guidance such as improving agro-advisories for better weather-linked irrigation scheduling.
The agreement was signed by A.K. Singh, Deputy Director General, Division of Extension and K. Alagusundaram, Deputy Director General, Division of Natural Resources Management and by Arun Kumar Joshi, Principal Scientist and India Country Representative, CIMMYT.
With support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), CSISA is implemented jointly by CIMMYT, IFPRI and IRRI and aims to enhance the productivity of cereal-based cropping systems in Bangladesh, India and Nepal as well as to increase farm incomes and reduce the environmental footprint of production through sustainable intensification technologies and management practices.
This article is authored by Anuradha Dhar, Communications Specialist, CSISA.