Smart Farm India: “Connecting solutions to end rural poverty”

Over the last three years, Jeevika has been working with a growing number of organisations to explore and develop “Smart Farm”[1] solutions to address rural poverty and climate change.

We are creating a pilot project in Daspalla, Odisha with our partners which will incorporate various technologies including controlled environment agriculture, fish farming and chill chain management all linked to improving market access and producer group development.

We have a strong core team who bring a wide range skills and experience from different sectors. This includes many volunteers and students studying international development and other relevant disciplines along with engineers and specialists with experience of India.

Our teams are focused on several working groups which change as the needs evolve currently these are: Smart Farm Projects Group, Smart Farm Network, Events, Communications and Theory of Change.

We welcome new partners and innovators to help us develop and extend this work. If you would like to find out more about any of these activities, then please get in touch.

Partners, researchers, innovators, and supporters.

Institute of Social Sciences (ISS), a national level research organisation since its inception in 1985 has made significant contributions in the areas of decentralisation, grassroots democracy, federalism, human rights and women’s empowerment. Their focus is Local Governance, Urban Studies, Women’s Studies & Economic Affairs.

Jeevan Rekha Parishad (JRP), one of our main project partners and based in Odisha, Jeevan Rekha Parishad (JRP) has worked closely with Jeevika on projects for small food producers for the past 15 years, they understand local needs and the barriers to progress and ensure that by working with local communities, solutions can be found.

Doug Marriott Associates (DMA), engineering specialists with international consulting experience including research and development in the energy saving, environment, and food industries. With 30 years of experience in India projects include smart grid energy, refrigeration and food processing.

Social Change and Development ( another internationally renowned partner working in Tamil Nadu with thousands of local self-help groups developing, livelihood, health and WASH projects.

Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) has worked with us on many projects including most recently training and development projects for the beekeeping industry in Odisha.

Brunel University, partnering with the Institute of Energy Futures and the RCUK Centre for Sustainable Energy Use in Food Chains (CSEF), are our main supporters in developing the Chill Chain Management project.

Kheyti, designs, adapts and implements low-cost farming solutions that help small farmers increase yield and predictability of produce. They combine their technologies with end-to-end support for farmers and are our main supporters in developing the low-cost greenhouse project.

Some of the team developing this work:

Mark Roberts, Director Jeevika Trust, 30 years’ experience as a director of charities pursuing development goals my aim is to facilitate support and nurture unique projects which empower unheard voices and lift people out of poverty. Experience and specialist skills focused on building effective working relationships in a variety of settings from locally based partnerships in the UK to broader European and International coalitions supported by the EU, UN and other international bodies.

Dr Manu Mishra, Director of Jeevan Rekha Parishad delivery partner with 25 years’ experience of local community development.

Richard Gupwell, Jeevika Chair, and board member former CEO and now chair of the European Institute for Asian Studies with whom we are also working.

Gopal Rao, project collaborator, consultant, and advisor to Jeevika, former head of international finance Oxfam GB former VP of Oxfam America.

Libby Cooper, Jeevika board member, consultant, and founder of the Charities Evaluation Service. Currently leading our work on Theory of Change.

Prof Savvas Tassou, Director Institute of Energy Futures, Director RCUK Centre for Sustainable Energy Use in Food Chains (CSEF) currently working with us on a pilot project to develop low-cost solar powered cold chain technologies.

Doug Marriott, 25 years’ experience of engineering and environmental projects in India, former director of engineering at Safeway plc, currently CEO of Doug Marriott Associates.

Dr George Mathew, Founder Director and current Chairman of the Institute Social Sciences. Dr George Mathew produced the film: “Swaraj: The Little Republic” which won the national award for the Best Film on Social Issues (2002) from President of India for “its strong depiction of women’s empowerment in rural India”.

Dr Pramila Patnaik, Expertise in implementation of projects, trainings, field research, empirical studies, evaluation of programmes, projects, and government schemes. Subject expertise relating to rural and urban local governance, health and sanitation, tribal and livelihood issues, women’s empowerment, and tribal education.

Eunice Leons, graduate of the Institute for Development Studies, works with us on CSR research and networking, with many years’ experience with local Indian NGOs.

Amlika Lal, is a communications specialist and Jeevika Board member with wide experience of India currently helping us with website, and social media development.

Lorna Gower, Jeevika volunteer currently working on development of the Smart Farm Network and database.

[1] Smart farming definition– the application of modern Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) into agriculture, leading to a Third Green Revolution. Here we have extended this definition to include the adoption of a growing range of Agri-tech solutions that are coming onto the market but are often not accessible to small farmers.