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Communication is key to reaching farmers, says India agri commissioner

posted Jun 17, 2015, 11:48 PM by Rowena Baltazar ‎(IRRI)‎
by Maria Rowena M. Baltazar and Tara Chand Dhoundiyal

Srinagar, India – “Communication holds the key” in effectively transferring knowledge generated by research, and it becomes more crucial when informing farmers of innovations that can help them.

This affirmation of the important role of communication in helping science solve real-world problems was given by Jeet Singh Sandhu, agriculture commissioner of India, to the 26 participants of a weeklong masterclass in communicating research to stakeholders held in Kashmir, India.

Dr. Sandhu is also deputy director general for crop sciences of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, which partnered with the National Food Security Mission and IRRI’s STRASA in organizing the project, seeking to equip project partners with capacity to communicate the work and progress being made under the project.

Uma Shankar Singh, STRASA coordinator for South Asia, added that “no technology or research innovation can reach the end user unless communicated in the right manner to right set of stakeholders.”

The master class on “communicating research to stakeholders” was conducted by the team of instructors from Crawford Fund and Econnect Communication from Australia. The week long training from 26 April to 02 May 2015, was held at Sher-I-Kashmir International Convention Centre (SKICC) in Srinagar, Kashmir, India.

Among the participants from IRRI-STRASA included Dr. Najam Waris Zaidi, Dr. Sarvesh Shukla, Mr. Tara Chand Dhoundiyal, and Mr. Mayank Sharma (India), and Ms. Maria Rowena M. Baltazar (Philippines).   

Dr. Manzoor Hussain Dar, IRRI senior associate scientist based in India, was the overall training coordinator, with Mr. Sandeep Baluni from IRRI/STRASA-India, providing logistical support.