Supporting Extension Services to Scale Up Sustainable Land Management: The potential of WOCAT’s tools and methods

This Lessons Learned publication reviews experiences from the IFAD grant “Scaling up sustainable land management (SLM) practices by smallholder farmers: working with extension services to identify, assess and disseminate SLM practices”. The three-year grant (2018-2020) was aimed at piloting – and gaining insights from – the application of WOCAT’s SLM tools and methods with extension services in three countries, namely Cambodia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic and Uganda. Scaling up was to be achieved by working with local partners to enhance their communities’ resilience to climate change shocks and other environmental pressures.

Various existing WOCAT tools and methods for scaling up SLM with extension services and farmers were piloted. The identification and documentation process yielded a total of 119 SLM practices in the three countries. It was clear that smallholders prioritized SLM solutions that directly benefited them: the participatory farmer-centred approach was a powerful means of uncovering those practices that improved well-being, whether in terms of food or income. This further underlines the new emphasis of SLM: production rather than simply conservation of soil.

Lead Authors: William Critchley, Nicole Harari and Robert Delve

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