Impact Assessment of ICRISAT Village Level Studies: 1975 to 2013. An independent external review commissioned by ICRISAT

Mullen, J D (2016) Impact Assessment of ICRISAT Village Level Studies: 1975 to 2013. An independent external review commissioned by ICRISAT. Technical Report. ICRISAT, Patancheru.

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RP-Market Institutions and Policies

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Many people assisted me in the preparation of this report. In particular, without naming them individually, Dr. Cynthia Bantilan and all the staff of the Research Program – Markets, Institutions and Policies at ICRISAT were always generous with their time and were fun to work with. The trip to Maharashtra was particularly memorable and so I am grateful to the villagers and VDSA staff in Kanzara and Kinkhed. Thanks also to Dr Kizito Mazvimavi, Head of the Impact Assessment Office at ICRISAT. I have benefited greatly from discussions with some of the old hands – Dr Jim Ryan, Dr Hans Binswanger-Mkhize, Dr N Jodha, and the late Dr KL Sahrawat. Dr Jeff Davis first outlined how this project might proceed. Many other ICRISAT and non-ICRISAT staff, including Dr CS Pawar, Dr Murali Sharma, Dr Sameer Kumar and the pigeonpea team, and Dr Tom Walker have also contributed to this research. I would be even more grateful if these people would share responsibility for my mistakes but perhaps this is too much to ask. About Author: Dr John Mullen was formerly a Principal Research Scientist and Leader of the Economics Research group in the NSW Department of Primary Industries, Australia and is a Distinguished Fellow of the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.


The village level studies (VLS) program was identified as one of ICRISAT’s 16 jewels in 2012 (40th anniversary). The program began in 1975 with 240 households in two villages in each of the three regions in the semi-arid tropics (SAT) of India. In 1980, four more villages were added, resulting in a total of 400 households. A repeat survey was carried out in these villages in 1989. Another 10 villages (250 households) in Burkina Faso and Niger were studied in the 1980s and in late 2000s. During 2001–2008, the household survey was carried out in six villages in India. In 2009, the VLS Project was rejuvenated, renamed as the VDSA (Village Dynamics in South Asia) project, and expanded to cover 1824 households in 42 villages in six states of SAT in India, three states in east India and 11 districts in Bangladesh. Other partners in the project included the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) institutes (National Centre for Agricultural Economics and Policy Research—NCAP, New Delhi; ICAR Research Complex for Eastern Region, Patna; Directorate of Water Management--DWM, Bhubaneswar) of India, and other research organizations and state agricultural universities in India and Bangladesh. From 2009 onwards, the funding for the expanded project came from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. There have been many paths by which the resources used in the VLS and VDSA projects complemented with resources from partners have achieved the goal of enhancing the welfare of rural households and the village economies in South Asia - by ‘raising the voices of the poor’ in the words of the goal of the VDSA project. Many benefits, ‘spillovers’, have also flowed to users around the world...

Item Type: Monograph (Technical Report)
Divisions: RP-Market Institutions and Policies
CRP: CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions, and Markets (PIM)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Impact Assessment, ICRISAT Village Level Studies, VDSA Project, Village Level Studies, VLS
Subjects: Others > Impact Assessment
Others > Village Level Studies
Others > Agriculture-Farming, Production, Technology, Economics
Others > Village Dynamics Studies
Depositing User: Mr Ramesh K
Date Deposited: 03 Nov 2016 05:49
Last Modified: 25 Jul 2018 07:59
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