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HRD Climate smart agriculture in rural India – Bath Spa University

What’s smart about climate-smart agriculture? Case studies and transformative proposals from rural India

Wednesday 7 December, 2022 – Wednesday 7 December, 2022
3:00 PM – 5:00 PM


Part of the Hazard, Risk and Disaster (HRD) Research Lecture Series 2022-23.

Since the early 2010s, numerous international organisations have argued that a fundamental transformation of the global food system is long overdue. To better achieve key social and environmental outcomes, the argument runs, governments, NGOs and farmers themselves need to embrace the tools of climate-smart agriculture: that is, techniques that achieve the ‘triple win’ of greater productivity, enhanced resilience and lowered emissions. While this sounds good in theory, what does climate-smart agriculture mean in practice?

Drawing on case studies from India, this presentation sets out how the climate-smart mainstream follows a narrowly technocratic approach of identifying and scaling up new technologies, management strategies and governance tools. This has led to patchy uptake, failed innovations and – in some cases – increased inequities. In response, the presentation asks what climate-smart agriculture would need to do differently to take its proposed goal of transformative change seriously. A transformative approach, I argue, would require the reworking of two of its foundational concepts: productivity and resilience. Repurposing both those categories will be essential to help transform rural development planning in ways that place justice and equity at the forefront of planning and practice.

About the speaker

Read more about Professor Marcus Taylor on his webpage.

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