Action research for social learning and water
governance – a facilitative service approach
Bruce Lankford
24 November 2010...
Responding to scale in water mgt and food security –
irrigation expansion and water allocation
Long-term engagement using ...
Food/water security in Sub-Saharan
Africa: expansion with water allocation
Current irrigation
13 million ha irrigated
215 ...
Micro-technologies inappropriate
(ICRISAT “African Market Gardens”)
Treadle
pumps
Micro-
irrigation kits
Row crops – peris...
Implementing irrigation reform and expansion;
recognising conditions in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Large distances and distant co...
Vertical reach of scale (As ecologists say
“there’s plenty of room at the bottom”)
Smallholder irrigation – in
southern Ta...
January 29, 2015
Scale & localisation: forms of polycentrism
Require modular units
Breaking
large basins
down into
smaller...
Facilitating water management – role
of experts mediating local policies
Devolving responsibility
Facilitating local owner...
Current costs for irrigation new-
build & rehabilitation (FAO, WB,
JICA, EU) approx $10,000/ha
Local artisanal engineers t...
Replace this type of support thinking
“Farmers must be trained on soil and water technologies
to enhance crop production a...
Food and water security – sustainable irrigated area
Vertical and horizontal scale challenges
Human capacity & skills inve...
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Action research for social learning and water governance – a facilitative service approach- Bruce Lankford

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Action research for social learning and water governance – a facilitative service approach- Bruce Lankford

  1. 1. Action research for social learning and water governance – a facilitative service approach Bruce Lankford 24 November 2010. SESSION 6: Case studies on Knowledge support systems CTA Conference, South Africa
  2. 2. Responding to scale in water mgt and food security – irrigation expansion and water allocation Long-term engagement using action-research programmes (5-10 years) (Test) Framework of mono/polycentric governance Facilitate change management including gaming approach to natural resource management Scientists as brokers of knowledge; multi/trans- disciplinarity Promotion of local experts, leaders, artisans as catalysts of community learning and infrastructural redesign Action-research for water management
  3. 3. Food/water security in Sub-Saharan Africa: expansion with water allocation Current irrigation 13 million ha irrigated 215 million ha cultivated 6% of total is irrigated Compared to 37% Asia Opportunities to increase Policy questions How to increase area Improve performance of existing areas At low cost Not stress river basins Water → other sectors
  4. 4. Micro-technologies inappropriate (ICRISAT “African Market Gardens”) Treadle pumps Micro- irrigation kits Row crops – perishable veg & fruit  Near urban centres  Lift of <0.5 metre ideally  Treadle work-effort equiv 0.5 ha = 0.6 million Joules/day $20-$100 bucket kits = Cost US$5-10K/ha Governance of diffuse vs point demand Cumulative irrigated area can deplete small catchments
  5. 5. Implementing irrigation reform and expansion; recognising conditions in Sub-Saharan Africa. Large distances and distant communities/sectors High levels of water unpredictability and variability Data scarcity Lack of administrative reach Fiscal constraints Irrigation systems (with many thousands of farmers) account for 60-80% depletion of freshwater? Horizontal (geographic) scale ‘Remote complexity’
  6. 6. Vertical reach of scale (As ecologists say “there’s plenty of room at the bottom”) Smallholder irrigation – in southern Tanzania System are fractal – replicating bifurcations River system Main canal system Secondary Tertiary Farm Field Bund/row Crop plant Crop branch Leaf Stomata
  7. 7. January 29, 2015 Scale & localisation: forms of polycentrism Require modular units Breaking large basins down into smaller units of management
  8. 8. Facilitating water management – role of experts mediating local policies Devolving responsibility Facilitating local ownership Local bye-laws Problem resolution Technological choice Top-enders Tail-enders
  9. 9. Current costs for irrigation new- build & rehabilitation (FAO, WB, JICA, EU) approx $10,000/ha Local artisanal engineers to keep costs of irrigation investments below $5000/ha, while aiming for less than $2-3K/ha Controlling costs: putting users into water policy and delivery Formal designed irrigation headworks – too expensive?
  10. 10. Replace this type of support thinking “Farmers must be trained on soil and water technologies to enhance crop production and food security” ASARECA. 2006 Maputo Workshop statement www.asareca.org/swmnet With this kind of support thinking: What training needs arise when we facilitate dialogue and local policy-making? When we bring farmers from top- and tail-end systems together while handing them responsibility to allocate water between irrigators, systems and to downstream sectors? Engaging with irrigators’ knowledge
  11. 11. Food and water security – sustainable irrigated area Vertical and horizontal scale challenges Human capacity & skills investments Governance architecture; polycentrism Scientists as mediators (transformative agents) Water users & local engineers as water experts Framework to accommodate this Long-term, large action-research projects: supporting & creating local ability/responsibility for water policy Conclusions

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