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Funding for research to support small farmers in South India

Image of cotton-picking in India
Cotton-picking in India
6 November 2017

The Open University has been awarded funding by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to research the creative responses of small farmers in South India to food security, biodiversity and climate challenges. 

Led by Dr Sandip Hazareesingh, Research Fellow, the 12-month pilot project 'Changing Farming Lives in South India, Past and Present’ will particularly explore the potential of various aspects of history, film, and sound to document and support farmers’ attempts to build resilience to these challenges. 

Dr Hazareesingh says: “Climate change affects biodiversity-based crop cultivation and this can have a significant impact on smallholders’ food security. However, this has also to some extent happened in the past, so by recovering historical accounts of resilience in the context of a local fragile ecosystem, the project can help strengthen farmers’ good livelihood strategies across South India, and indeed, beyond. It is particularly important, in my view, to put history back into development issues and debates.” 

The project will be carried out in collaboration with a Karnataka-based NGO, Green Foundation, which works with local smallholders to promote biodiversity conservation and sustainable agriculture. 

The funding was awarded by the AHRC’s Research Networking for International Development fund, using its allocation from the Global Challenges Research Fund.

Research by Dr Sandip Hazareesingh available on the OU's open access research portal, Open Research Online (ORO), can be viewed here.

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