Farmer participatory research in Latin America: four cases

Braun Ann R., Hocdé Henri. 2000. Farmer participatory research in Latin America: four cases. In : Working with farmers. The key to adoption of forage technologies : proceedings of an international workshop, Cagayan de Oro City, Mindanao, Philippines, 12-15 October 1999. Stür Werner W. (ed.), Horne P.M. (ed.), Hacker J.B. (ed.), Kerridge P.C. (ed.). Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation. Canberra : ACIAR, pp. 32-53. (ACIAR Proceedings, 95) ISBN 0-642-45604-6 International Workshop on Working with Farmers: the Key to Adoption of Forage Technologies, Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, 12 October 1999/15 October 1999.

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Abstract : Farmer Participatory Research (FPR) emerged in response to limitations of top-down R&D approaches. In Latin America, the principles and concepts of FPR are rooted in earlier participatory research experiences in fields such as education, sociology and health, usually played out within a community-development context. Contributions of Paulo Freire and Orlando Fals Borda are discussed briefly. To analyse these experiences, a typology based on decision-making locus in research, farmers' and scientists' roles, and the style of research conducted was used. Three approaches were distinguished: scientist-led, farmer-led and interactive research. Four cases are analysed: (1) Farmer-to-Farmer program, Nicaragua, founded in 1987 by the National Farmers and Ranchers Union (UNAG) based on volunteer farmer-promoters. The focus is on low external-input agriculture. (2) Diagnosis, Investigation and Participation (DIP), formed in 1994 by a multi-disciplinary team with linkages to the Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science Faculty at the Autonomous University in Yucatan, Mexico. Their objective is to improve the quality of life of indigenous communities at the forest-agriculture interface through participatory innovation based on local resources. (3) Farmer Experimentation, initiated by PRIAG (Regional Program for Reinforcement of Agronomic Research on Basic Grains) in Central America, in 1991. The objective is to increase the self-reliance of small- and medium-scale producers in generating and disseminating technology. (4) Local agricultural research committees (CIALs), first launched by CIAT in Colombia in 1990, to strengthen rural communities' capacity as decision-makers and innovators of agricultural solutions and to exert demand on the formal R&D system. The discussion focuses on similarities and differences in the processes, principles, roles and relationships under-lying these experiences and key lessons learned. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Recherche, Étude de cas, Participation, Communauté rurale, Innovation, Gestion des ressources, Qualité de la vie, Prise de décision

Classification Agris : E14 - Development economics and policies
E20 - Organization, administration and management of agricultural enterprises or farms
A50 - Agricultural research

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Braun Ann R., CIAT (COL)
  • Hocdé Henri, CIRAD-TERA-AF (CRI)

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