Constraints to the Diffusion of Natural – Resource –Conserving Agricultural Technology in India: The Case of SRI (System of Rice Intensification) in Tamil Nadu

Agriculture sector has been acknowledged as engine of economic growth and critical to poverty reduction in developing countries like India. India has witnessed, initial periods, problems of low per capita food grains along with food insecurity. This problem was addressed by Green Revolution technology in early 1960s, restricted with wheat and rice in irrigated regions of the country. Initially it was criticised for its large farmer bias and bias towards farmers with assured irrigation, of late there is a growing recognition of its negative environmental impacts due to high use of chemical fertilizer/pesticide. The country has not witnessed any big technological breakthrough in agriculture that can challenge high input driven post green revolution agricultural technologies. Policy makers and different stakeholders involved in agriculture plan to develop and spread System of Rice Intensification (SRI), is a natural resource conserving and sustainable technology. Sectoral System of Innovation (SSI) has been used as conceptual/theoretical framework to explore constraints to diffusion of SRI technology. It was observed form analysis that the SRI prevalence among small and marginal farmers is very low. Finally, it is evident from this micro level study that the condition for synchronization of these three blocks of SSI is not conducive in this process. This Paper is divided into four sections. The introduction and background, statement of the problem and objectives of the study are given in section I. Sources of the data, methodology and theoretical framework of the paper is presented in section II. Discussions on the distribution and constraints of SRI technology are carried out in Section III and the summary and findings are presented in section IV.

Saravanakumar R