Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Improving RCM Indonesia through an Interactive Seminar-Workshop on MELIA with Local Enumerators and Farmers

(BOGOR, Indonesia, 19 September) - The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and its key partner in Indonesia, Badan Standardisasi Instrumen Pertanian Tanaman Pangan (BSIP TP), are committed to transforming rice farming through the enhancement of the Rice Crop Management (RCM) Indonesia platform, locally known as Layanan Konsultasi Padi (LKP). To measure the impact of RCM in Indonesia, a baseline survey will be conducted in West Java, South Sulawesi, and North Sumatera. As part of the preparations, a three-day training was conducted on 11 - 13 September to equip 24 BSIP TP staff and 8 IRRI Indonesia staff with a basic understanding of the concepts, processes, methods, and applications of monitoring, evaluation, learning and impact assessment (MELIA) in agricultural research, as well as full understanding and competency in using the LKP survey application for gathering baseline data.

Yuji Enriquez, IRRI’s Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) Manager who served as one of the resource persons, emphasized the importance of MEL, "We have a lot of lessons around the world how and why programs fail and root causes of these are failure to understand the local context and adaptively manage programs based on evidence.” He explained that MEL should be employed right at the start of the program design process and that there should be an impact assessment after the program to determine whether the developments in the individuals and communities involved can be attributed to the program.

Ten farmers were invited for mock interviews so the participants or enumerators could prepare for the actual interviews. The RCM Baseline Survey data will be used as a starting point for improving LKP and measuring project outputs, outcomes, and impact. Tika Tresnawati, BB Implementation Standard's Extension Specialist, one of the participants in this training, shared her experience, citing that inviting real farmers to the workshop made the exercise more interactive. “So far, this is the best training I have ever received since I joined the Ministry of Agriculture.”, she shared.

With the successful completion of the in-person training, BSIP TP and IRRI-Indonesia are now well-prepared to conduct the baseline survey with a mindset focused on creating an impact on the transformation of rice farming in Indonesia.


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