|Journal of Extension Systems
Article reprints (US $10/each) may be obtained by contacting the Chief Editor.
1991, Volume 7(1), July
M. K. Lowdermilk, Editorial
- Obbine, C. P. Culture of Poverty: Implication on Nigeria's
- Salas, M. A. Extension and Indigenous Knowledge Systems in
Conflict: Strengthening the Andean Knowledge System in Peru.
- Biscoe, J. Training and Visit: Resource Management Not
Extension-The World Bank and the Message Factory.
- Kishore Shah, S. & R. L. Rose. Technology Utilization
Through T & V System in Napal: Choice of Communication Source in Technology Delivery.
- Westermarck, H. Computers, Videos, and Teletechnology; Can
They Help Farmers and Agricultural Advisory Services.
- Verma, O. S. & N. Mehrotra. Extension Work: Professional
Orientation of Extension Personnel vis-a-vis SMS.
- Gupta, J. Progressive Use of Communication Media by Marine
- Rahiman, O. A., A. M. Tampi & C. Bhaskaran. Transfer of
Technology System: Functional Linkages Between and Among Four Sub-Systems.
Among many advantages of being overseas, one definite disadvantage is the inability to
keep in touch with colleagues and what they are doing related to irrigation management
improvement. The purpose of writing this editorial is: (1) to wish the JES readers a
productive new year; (2) to share some activities of the Irrigation Improvement Project in
Egypt, and (3) to request you to share what you have been doing in Irrigation Management.
I recall how few of us were actively involved in the 1970's in what is now commonly
termed " Irrigation Management". Since then the numbers of professionals
involved and their accomplishments have increased to such an extent that it is almost
impossible to track even significant activities. A major accomplishment was the
establishment of IIMI which along with research and other contributions has helped to keep
a growing cadre of Irrigation Management professionals undated through an excellent
As some of you may know, I am with CSU but on a sub-contract with Nathan Associates
which is involved with MKE and LBII in a large Irrigation Improvement Project (IP) in
Egypt. Nathan's and my responsibility with two other consultants are the institutional
aspects of the IIP, Major activities are socio-economic action studies; economic and
financial analyses of feasibility studies; formation of a new Irrigation Advisory Service
within the Ministry of Public Works and Water Resources and the establishment of a
programme of Water User Associations (WUAs) in a large pilot project area of about 365,000
acres. The total irrigation system is to be improved for 11 canal commands which includes
all aspects of main and micro systems. Typically, the IIP was designed for a three year
life! The first contract will complete in late 1991. Needless to say, this project will
undoubtedly be extended for several more years if it is expected to achieve the optimistic
goals of the designers. After many years in IM, I have yet to observe a project with
institutional components which was designed within a realistic time frame!
Some achievements related to the institutional aspects of the project to date are: (1)
completion of five feasibility studies and an action socioeconomic field study covering
the 365,000 acres and 1910 farmers with an emphasis on socio-economic factors related to
water control; (2) establishment of the Irrigation Advisory Service (IAS) with 28
technical professionals (graduates) and over 200 technicians and (3) the initial
'organization of over 750 WUAs using a flexible seven phase learning process. Major
activities have included evolving a strategy, selection and training of staff plus
constant field monitoring and coaching of staff. Though the IAS and WUA innovations are
new to Egyptian irrigation, much conceptual work and some experiments were done in the
early 1980s. Five professionals who helped evolve the IAS and WUAs are still with the
programme. Given the commitment and support needed from the officials of the Ministry and
middle managers, these two institutional innovations have the potential for making a
significant contribution to irrigation improvement in the years ahead. The programme, to
date, has been supported by some outstanding international consultants including Drs. Alan
and Carolyn Early. Dr. Jeffry Brewer, Mr. Don Haslem. and others. They have provided
excellent TA support in developing training and technical materials and in training the
trainers. The first course ever in Egypt on a Planning and Design of Mesqas (watercourses)
using a custom-fit process involving water users was recently held for IAS and Design
In 1991, we are anticipating a number of new developments. These include: (1) addition
of staff and training the trainers using top international consultants in on-farm water
management technologies and organizational/ management skills; (2) beginning the slow
process of evolving a legal basis and incentives for WUAs; (3) developing a permanent home
for the IAS in the MPWWR but with strong linkages to the Ministry of Agriculture, Research
Institutes and other essential organizations; (4) sending a substantial number of
technical professionals for specialized courses and study tours to the USA and other
countries; (5) finalizing an internal monitoring and evaluation programme which will
provide feedback to management of the lessons learned in assisting water users to organize
their own private water users associations owned, controlled and managed by them for their
benefits, and (6) to begin a long process of planning with the Water Research Institute
for holding an International Workshop or Conference in Egypt about 1992 related to the
"Costs and Benefits of Water User Associations in Large Public Gravity Irrigation
Systems". We would like to involve IIMI in this important conference and likely will
be given the approval of the Ministry and IIMI.
The IIP has produced several useful materials which can be made available through the
Ministry. These include the seven volume SocioEconomic Study Findings of 11 Canal Commands
entitled, "Egypt's Irrigation Management Challenge". Also, a large number of
training modules have been developed and are now being translated into Arabic. Dr. Jeffry
Brewer refined and Egyptized the "Training of Trainers Guide for Irrigation
Management" which I prepared with an Indian colleague in 1988 under the USAID
assisted Irrigation Management and Training Project for which LBII are contractors. A
custom-fit mesqa (watercourse) process for planning and design is being finalized and will
soon be in Arabic. There are other materials of a methodological nature designed for this
project. The IAS strategy and other planning papers for assisting water users to organize
may be of interest to some.
The purpose of listing these materials is to request you to share some of your
materials and papers. We have had much support from IIMI in providing essential research
findings and materials which are being much used in this programme. Many of the materials
developed under Water Management Synthesis I and 11 by CSU, USU and Cornell University
professionals have also been useful. Unfortunately, we have not been able to receive much
from the new ISPAN centrally funded project funded by AID. The World Bank/AID Guidelines
for Developing Training Programmes for Public Irrigation Programmes has been useful.
The IIP is only one of several projects assisted by USAID-Cairo under the Irrigation
Management Systems Programme. Others include: Structural Replacement; Preventive
Maintenance; Main System Management; Planning Studies and Models; Professional
Development; Water Research Center; Project Preparation Department; Survey and Mapping and
Miscellaneous Technical Assistance and Commodity Procurement. The World Bank and the
Canadian Programme also have significant projects in Egyptian Irrigation as well as other
It is good to be back in Egypt after working closely with the earlier Egyptian Water
Use Management Programme for which CSU was the contractor from the middle 1970's to 1984.
This assignment provides a real challenge because working with some excellent Egyptian
colleagues in an area new to most of them is vastly rewarding. They are very competent,
eager for professional development and committed to improving irrigation management on the
large and important Nile System. What is needed is to have an IIMI presence here to play a
significant role in the long-term process of improving irrigation system performance.
IIMI, likely could play a significant role in the areas of policy analyses, research
collaboration and in helping the Ministry make significant organizational changes in the
management of this historic irrigation system. A recent volume has been completed on the
History of Irrigation in Egypt which the ICID is translating into English.
Back to Top
Obbine, C. P. Culture of Poverty: Implication on Nigeria's
Socio-Economic Transformation, 8-17.
This paper establishes the extent to which Oscar Lewis (1964) culture of poverty theory
applies to Nigerian communities. It is found that 68 per cent of the poverty traits are
possessed by the Anioma people of Bendel state. In all probabilities, this is detrimental
to progress. The most striking indicators of poverty that continued to stay are: (1)
borrowing from local Money-lenders at exorbitant rate of interest, (2) living in crowded
localities, (3) dominance of male superiority, (4) unemployment and underemployment, (5)
low wages, (6) unskilled occupations, (7) child labour, (8) chronic shortage of cash, (9)
a great emphasis on maintaining family cohesiveness, and (10) low participation in
national welfare activities. In order to stem this tide, various socio-economic and
agricultural infrastructures need to be intensified.
Back to Top
Salas, M. A. Extension and Indigenous Knowledge Systems in
Conflict: Strengthening the Andean Knowledge System in Peru, 18-29.
This article deals with problematic issues about the role of extension in relation to
indigenous knowledge systems. It focuses on the possible bridges which can be built
between the scientific knowledge system and that of the rural population. The empirical
references emerge from the Peruvian case where interactions between these two knowledge
systems take place having as main actors, on one side, the state agricultural extension
service and, on the other side, the peasant population.
Back to Top
Biscoe, J. Training and Visit: Resource Management Not
Extension-The World Bank and the Message Factory, 30-35.
This paper reviews the operation of the much vaunted T&V system and concludes that,
as it stands, it represents a resource management system which does not necessarily
provide agricultural extension. The author recommends adjustments to the system and
additions in regard to the training processes and content, the role of extension staff as
advisers, and additional areas critical to the day to day operation of an extension
department (or organization) which are rarely addressed.
Back to Top
Kishore Shah, S. & R. L. Rose. Technology Utilization
Through T & V System in Napal: Choice of Communication Source in Technology Delivery,
This study was conducted in Dhanusha district of Nepal with 267 selected farmers during
June-July, 1988. Findings indicate that Nepal farmers are somewhat distinct from their
counterparts in other developing countries. Most of these farmers are of middle-age,
formal school education has been hardly up to 3rd standard, each farmer carries the load
of six dependents, 60 per cent of them are small farmers, and almost 75 per cent have no
affiliation with any agri-related organization. Extension Workers and fellow contact
farmers are the primary source of agricultural informations. The T&V System Perhaps
worked well in Nepal as 58 per cent farmers are found high technology users despite scanty
availability of production inputs. Lack of irrigation is most frequently mentioned problem
of Nepal farmers.
Back to Top
Westermarck, H. Computers, Videos, and
Teletechnology; Can They Help Farmers and Agricultural Advisory Services, 47-66.
On the recommendations of the last Working Conference of Directors of Agricultural
Advisory services, an Expert Meeting on information and communication technology was held
in 1989. In this Meeting, it was realised that up to now, there has been too little
information available on the profitability of information Technology (IT) applications in
agriculture. Experts, therefore, recommended an investigation of whether any relevant
material could be made available by OECD Member countries in support of a better
understanding of the existing cost-benefit ratios. The present paper is the result of this
investigation. This report together with the report of Expert Meeting provided Directors
of AAS sufficient background information at the 10th Working Conference for reference and
discussions. The relevant material in this paper is drawn from a scanning of 24 AAS in 24
OECD countries and 38 distinguished researchers in International Research Group in
Extension (IRGE) in fall 1989.
Back to Top
Verma, O. S. & N. Mehrotra. Extension Work:
Professional Orientation of Extension Personnel vis-a-vis SMS, 67-84.
The findings of this case study show that extension personnel give more emphasis to the
system of working with groups instead of working with individuals. They heavily rely on
involving learners, local leaders, and volunteers in the development programmes. The SMS,
on the other hand, rely more on their own ability to carry on the project. This evidently
indicates that they lack group process character. They apparently need more guidance and
direction in their extension-related activities. Extension personnel, however, are
reported to have been more productive when they are ensured independence and freedom in
their "tension work.
Back to Top
Gupta, J. Progressive Use of Communication Media by Marine
Increased mass media use is said to be a sign of modernization. This paper examines the
mass media use by the marine fishermen of Kerala in respect of source of communication,
use of mass media, and possession of mass media. The study indicates the high level of
preference to mass media for obtaining initial information about innovations, wide
coverage of message items, and regularity of use. This seems to be a distinguishing
feature in the background of their low socio-economic profile. The results of the study
will guide scientists, policy makers, and extension workers to select the right media for
Back to Top
Rahiman, O. A., A. M. Tampi & C. Bhaskaran. Transfer
of Technology System: Functional Linkages Between and Among Four Sub-Systems, 91-96.
The effectiveness of transfer of technology in agriculture is greatly influenced by the
extent of functional linkages between and among the sub-systems involved in the process.
The findings of this study indicate that this linkage between and among four identified
sub-systems (RSS: Research Sub-System, ESS: Extension Sub-System, ISS: Input Sub-System,
and CSS: Client Sub-System) is very weak. Whereas RSS is found to have the best linkage
with ESS, the Extension Sub-System is not mutually effective with RSS. This is something
very intriguing sort of relationship. The linkage of ESS, however, is quite satisfactory
with both the ISS and CSS. This evidently shows that there is a well-knit relationship of
extension personnel with the farmers as also with inputs supply agencies. Moreover, this
relationship is mutually subscribed by the CSS to ESS. This type of mutual interaction
between farmers and extension workers is apparently very conducive to effective
intervention in TOT process. The most weakest subsystem is found to be of Input
Sub-System. In order to make it effective, it is suggested that a battery of sales
counters of farm inputs should be established at reasonably focal points. In addition, an
alternate strategy for making all the four sub-systems effective is also suggested through
a paradigm as demonstrated in Figure 1.
Back to Top