Migration and Gender Dynamics in Irrigation Governance in Nepal

  • Date
  • Location
    virtual, Nepal


November 25, 2020, 8:00 pm – 9:30 pm Nepal time / 9:15 am US EST / 15:15 CET

Conveners:  Farmer Managed Irrigation System Promotion Trust (FMIST), Nepal; International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI); International Water Management Institute (IWMI); CGIAR Research Programs on Policies, Institutions, and Markets (PIM) and Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE).

Widespread male migration from rural areas is one of the most important forces shaping agrarian transformation in Nepal. One particularly important area affected is the governance and management of local public goods, especially irrigation systems. Given the crucial role of irrigation in agricultural productivity and food security, attention to gender in irrigation governance is not only necessary for existing systems, but also opens potential new opportunities for sustainable and inclusive development in rural Nepal.

This webinar will present results of a quantitative and qualitative study to identify the various measures in which irrigation system governance has responded to male migration. This includes (a) results of a phone survey conducted with Water Users Association chairpersons of 336 irrigation systems across all provinces in Nepal, including farmer-managed, agency-managed, and jointly-managed systems; (b) case studies of 10 irrigation systems that FMIST has worked with over the years; and (c) two detailed case studies representing hill and terai systems.

The study provides critical evidence regarding the sources of technological and institutional innovations in irrigation that are associated with continued performance of irrigation systems, and strategies to ensure women’s role to participate in irrigation management decisions and to derive benefit/ burden from the role change in irrigation governance.

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