Participatory Research and Development for Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resource Management: A Sourcebook - Vol. 1

By Julian Gonsalves; Thomas Becker et al. | Go to book overview
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27
A Livelihood Systems Framework
for Participatory Agricultural
Research: The Case of UPWARD
While rootcrop agriculture is an important means of livelihood for the poor, it is only a part of the diverse portfolio of livelihood activities managed by farming households. Enhancing the contribution of rootcrops to sustainable livelihood of poor households is the overall goal of the Users’ Perspectives with Agricultural Research and Development (UPWARD), an Asian participatory research network sponsored by the International Potato Center (CIP).UPWARD’s research and development (R&D) framework has evolved mainly through an inductive learning process, capitalizing on its cumulative field experiences since its launching in 1990. In particular, the development of UPWARD’s R&D framework has been marked by three key “phases”: thematic, integrated, and livelihood systems.
Thematic Framework
In its early years, UPWARD conducted intensive assessment and documentation to fill in critical knowledge gaps in rootcrop agricultural systems in Asia. This initial work also led to the identification of key thematic areas that UPWARD then chose to focus on. These were the following:
Production systems - identifying and characterizing production systems typologies; assessing local management of rootcrop agriculture; strengthening local seed systems; improving management of crop nutrients, pest and diseases; and utilizing homegardens for food security

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