Using ICTs to Facilitate "Climate Smart Agriculture" among Tribal Farmers of North East India

The Adi tribal community inhabit the Siang river valley and foothills of the Eastern Himalayas of NorthEast India. Most farmers are smallholders, and practice jhum (slashandburn) cultivation. Together with difficult mountainous terrain, regular natural calamities, irregular monsoon rainfall, etc., this means agriculture is only for subsistence. 40 per cent of the population lives below the poverty line and agricultural productivity has been among the lowest in India. A 2007 information needs assessment found the overwhelming majority of Adi farmers lacked access to agricultural information with which to address these and other challenges. Considering this very difficult scenario, the eArik (e-agriculture) project was initiated in 2007, aiming to disseminate "climate smart agriculture practices" and also to achieve food security.

R. Saravanan
© Centre for Development Informatics (CDI), University of Manchester, 2011