Thursday, April 7, 2016

Indonesian rice farmers and extension workers learn to produce participatory video for technology dissemination

PALEMBANG, Indonesia—“Technologies that do not reach the people who are meant to use them are rather useless, that’s why the outscaling process is crucial,” said IRRI scientist Buyung Hadi. To fill the gap between technology and the farmers, a participatory video production training-workshop (photo) was conducted under the Give2Asia-funded capacity enhancement project for sustainable intensification of rice ecosystems in Indonesian outer islands.

Twenty farmers and 13 research and extension staff of the Assessment Institute for Agricultural Technologies (AIAT)-South Sumatra participated. They learned the basics of participatory video production during a training-workshop on 28 March-1 April at the AIAT compound in South Sumatra.

“When you involve the end-users (farmers) in scaling out a technology, you produce something that is potentially more effective because it (the technology) is communicated in layman’s terms from the perspective of a fellow end-user,” added Hadi who is also the project coordinator. “There will also be ownership by the farmers, which may encourage them to use the participatory video method in their own outscaling efforts.”

Dr. Harmanto, AIAT-South Sumatra director, expressed his appreciation to IRRI for organizing an activity that built the capacity of both farmers and AIAT staff. Also, he expressed hope that participatory outscaling methods will encourage more farmers to adopt rice-farming technologies.

The event—the first of three training sessions—taught the participants how to create a storyboard, properly handle equipment, practice filming techniques, and conduct outdoor hands-on exercises in filming videos and interviews. The participants came up with multiple storyboards on various topics, such as trap barrier system, drum seeder, and mechanical transplanter. The participants showed eagerness and enthusiasm in learning “outside their comfort zone” and promised to come back to the next training session with video clips based on their storyboards.

The farmers were from villages in tidal swamp areas where integrated best management approaches are promoted by CORIGAP (Closing rice yield gaps with reduced environmental footprint), an IRRI project that aims to increase farm productivity through environmentally sustainable ways.

Mr. Budi Raharjo, head of the mechanization and postharvest division of AIAT and CORIGAP country partner, was instrumental in bringing the farmers and AIAT staff together. Trina Mendoza, an IRRI consultant, led the participatory video production workshop. She was assisted by Rona Azucena, IRRI communication specialist.


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