INTERNATIONAL SRI RESEARCH SEMINAR ON RECENT Changes in Rice Production and Rural Livelihoods: New Insights on the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) as a Socio-Technical Movement in India

Wageningen University

national consortium on sri (ncs)

19 - 21 June 2014, National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NASC), NASC Complex, DPS Marg, PUSA, New Delhi - 110 012









The workshop addresses current challenges for food security and livelihoods in India by looking at the production of food crops by farmers in interaction with the agricultural innovation system. A key focus is on a specific alternative to agricultural intensification presented in recent years: the System of Rice Intensification (SRI). SRI comprises a set of agronomic principles for rice cultivation, targeted at productivity increase with low use of external inputs and sustainable use of water and nutrients. Significant saving in crucial inputs; seed, water and agro-chemical along with climate resilience capability of the innovation have attracted all attention.

The aim of the workshop is to bring together results from several projects and programmes and its implications for the policy agendas regarding agricultural research, food security and rural development. Over the past four years a major research programme from Indian partners together with Wageningen University, the Netherlands, investigated SRI in India. This will be supplemented with number of Indian studies in recent years.

The studies presented in this workshop address the social and technical changes in cultivation practices as well as the wider institutional dynamics set in motion with the introduction of SRI in India as well as internationally. The prime movers behind the elaboration and spread of SRI methods have been farmers, field-level agronomists and extensionists and CSOs rather than the formal institutions of rice science. The overall question is how to understand and explain the spread of SRI as a socio-technical phenomenon and driver of agrarian change?

The research findings are expected to be of direct relevance for policy. The workshop thus also addresses what policy makers and agricultural research institutes can learn from SRI about the dissemination of novel scientific knowledge and agricultural practice. The findings of few premium studies on scientific validation of the principles and processes of system of crop intensification including SRI, will add more confidence to variety of stakeholders.

Beyond the mere increase of production and productivity, food security includes issues as diverse as poverty reduction, sustainable use of resources like land and water, the role of science as well as changes in labour, cropping patterns and markets. This variety of mutually interacting factors requires an integrated approach. By making no prior assumptions about the defining technical or social characteristics of SRI in India, the studies have identified with greater precision what SRI in India actually is and how it works. The combination of qualitative and quantitative data, examined from a variety of disciplinary and conceptual perspectives, made it possible to systematically analyse the key drivers and mechanisms behind the success of SRI in India.

By linking a diverse set of studies and perspectives, the workshop aims to create a wider understanding of food production and rural livelihoods in India, creating new opportunities for science as well as policy paradigm.

An International Workshop
Changes in Rice Production and Rural Livelihoods - New Insights on the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) as a socio-technical movement in India

Rice Production and Rural Livelihoods - Future Prospects and Policies for a Post Green Revolution World
19-21st June 2014

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