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Development and the culture of critical engagement with the outside

A week ago, I was in Gangavati taluk of Koppal District, as part of ITfC's research study on “Developing an institutional design for Community Knowledge Centres”, for the Karnataka Knowledge Commission. The study aims to develop an appropriate design for centres at the village level, which can provide entitlements-related information to village communities as well as facilitate co-creation of knowledge in various domains pertinent to everyday life (such as agriculture, animal husbandry, health, etc.); and also spark off a local culture of knowledge-seeking behaviour and knowledge-oriented collective processes (e.g., community-initiated discussions and debates on scientific and indigenous knowledge).


Implications of a Government-NGO Partnership

In January 2011, I made a field trip to Delhi to study the Mission Convergence programme (Samajik Suvidha Sangam) of the Government of Delhi. The objective of this programme is to 'provide welfare services in an integrated manner to under-privileged citizens in an efficient, transparent, convenient, friendly and cost effective manner; to implement the action plan for welfare schemes in collaboration with community based organisations (CBOs) [...] and to promote the empowerment of women' (Mission Convergence, 2010). My research goal was to study the role of ICTs in public service delivery and community development, and in facilitating structural reform towards accountable governance.


Visiting a Raita Kendra (Farmer's Centre)

I visited the Raita Kendra in Chikballapur as part of the reseach on Samudaya Jnana Kendras for Karnataka Jyana Aayoga. This was a special kendra as opposed to the others across the State as it was part of a pilot project of computerising the Kendras.

When I was there, I was lucky to witness a meeting, or training as they called it. There were about 50 farmers from different age groups at this meeting.

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