Evy Elago-Carusos1*, Wendy Galero2 and Edwin Sardido3
Agricultural research and extension are important elements for improving agricultural production and food systems. It is said that the enhancement of traditional farming into science-based agriculture requires expeditious transfer of research results from laboratory to field. Agriculture extension was one of the services entrusted to local government from the national government during its decentralization in 1991. The basic premise was they can better design their extension services to best fit local needs because they know more of the local setting. It is a unique service that provides access to small rural poor farmers through non-formal education and information sources. That in turn helps these communities to increase productivity and income, alleviate poverty and improve food security.
The strategic research partnerships between local government, non-government organizations and academic researchers as an innovative mechanism to further define and facilitate extension service delivery are now increasingly recognized. This article provides the narrative of the experiences and lessons in bridging agricultural research and community practices through strategic involvement of the local government in research and extension. The discussion is based on the experience of Landcare Foundation of the Philippines (LFPI), a non-government organization, while implementing the Australian Center for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) Integrated Crop Management (ICM) Project in Bohol, Philippines.
Keywords: Agricultural Extension, Integrated crop management, Farmers Field School