His Coordinates

“We experiment and develop models for sustainable development”

Jan 2013 | No Comment

Says Dr M V Rao, IAS, Director General, National Institute of Rural Development, Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India

Rural poor are focus of National Institute of Rural Development (NIRD). How does NIRD help them?

NIRD’s primary mission is economic and social development of rural people, particularly rural poor and the underprivileged. We undertake capacity development of functionaries involved in rural development across the country. We experiment and develop models for sustainable development. Our research studies help to analyze development policies and programmes. We suggest corrective action in design and implementation method based on our field studies.

What are the key areas of your Training Programmes?

The Key Areas of NIRD Training Progranmmes are Livelihoods, Gender Issues, Equity & Social Development, Rural Technology, Natural Resources Management, Watershed Development, Rural Employment, Rural Industries, Basic Amenities like Drinking Water & Sanitation, Rural Energy, Rural Roads, Rural Health, Geoinformatics & ICT Applications, Financial Inclusiveness, and other rural development themes.

What is the main focus of research activities at NIRD?

NIRD’s main focus of research is to study implementation of rural development programmes at fi eld level and bring out policy and design issues for consideration of Central and State Governments. We also undertake policy research and evaluation of several initiatives at work across the country. We suggest ideas for new programmes and initiatives based on people’s need and aspirations.

How do other NIRD Faculty Centres take benefi t from Centre on Geoinformatics Application in Rural Development (CGARD)?

Other NIRD Faculty Centres take the benefit from CGARD in terms of training in National and International training programmes, mapping, Research Data Analysis, satellite data procurement and analysis and GPS data for locational aspects of assets, etc.

Do you like to highlight three main achievements of NIRD?

Though there are many landmarks in NIRD’s over fifty years of service to the nation, the three significant achievements and contributions of NIRD are: Deliberations and brainstorming leading to the formulation of 73rd Constitutional amendment for Panchayat Raj for decentralized governance and Right to Information Act (RTI) empowering people and ensuring transparency; and policy support and inputs to 10th, 11th& 12th Finance Commissions.

What role you see of Geoinformatics Technology in rural development?

Geoinformatics is proving to be a powerful tool for planning, monitoring, project implementation and evaluation of rural development programmes, for saving time and costs and hence in almost all rural development programmes, Geoinformatics applications are gaining acceptability and popularity because of usefulness. Further digital database, locational features, convergence and real time updating has made this technology an integral part of rural development policies and programmes.

Do you think there is a need for developing a RD GIS by CGARD?

As Geoinformatics help in convergence and real time data capturing, it is meaningful to have RD GIS to cater to the requirements of rural development. The RD GIS could optimize the benefi ts to the rural people and areas to develop the efficacy of the planning and monitoring systems.

What are NIRD Policies and Programmes to reach out to Villages to use Geoinformatics Technology?

NIRD encourages Faculty Centres to adopt villages and develop the villages through various development interventions by participatory means and the use of futuristic technologies like the Geoinformatics. CGARD has Action Research Projects in 4 Gram Panchayats in Tamilnadu and Maharastra and is going to take up three more in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala. Further, all projects undertaken by CGARD have applications up to village level. A standalone and web based Village GIS has been developed by CGARD. For two districts in Uttarakhand, cadastry level application has been developed.

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