Topic 7

An action agenda for a supportive institutional ecosystem for transitioning to regenerative agriculture

Hansika Singh

Principal Strategist, Forum For The Future; Community Member, ICA; Forum For The Future; Initiative for Climate Action (ICA)

Bhubesh Kumar

Director-Food & Agri; Research and
Innovation Circle of Hyderabad (RICH)

Priya Shyamsundar

Lead Economist; The Nature Conservancy (TNC)

Minhaj Ameen

Founder, Earth & Us; Anchor, Secretariat, NCNF; Earth & Us; National Coalition for Natural Farming

Abhayraj Naik

Co-Founder; Initiative for Climate Action (ICA)

MOTIVATION

Agriculture requires the valuation of public goods. The agricultural sector therefore needs incentives to internalize and value the public benefits of regenerative agriculture. Current innovations are either ineffective or not taken up by users in the Indian context. Further, innovations do not fully take into account users' needs, or account for the behavioural changes required, which necessitates an understanding of how people behave and respond as well as new types of institutional arrangements between suppliers, farmers, innovators etc. There are negative incentives for regenerative agriculture in the system including subsidies that disincentivize regenerative agriculture. It is also difficult to establish change in the entrenched systems of conventional agriculture. Along with underinvestment in extension and innovation resources, these factors have led to degraded soils that lower agricultural productivity, polluted waterways through fertilizer runoff, increased greenhouse gas emissions, and biodiversity loss. Further, there is an overuse of water resources. All these issues eventually lead to a stagnation in productivity.
To address these problems, we need to work on human- centred design approaches that are employed to address institutional challenges (financing mechanisms, re- imagination of extension services, technological innovation) for scaling regenerative agriculture through suppliers & practices.

AIMS

1. Identification of the critical institutional barriers along the supply chain (production, finance, and marketing) of agricultural products that hamper regenerative agriculture.
2. Assess institutional abilities, needs, risks, and benefits associated with incentivizing regenerative agriculture.
3. Formulate institutional design strategies that can incentivise regenerative agriculture.
4. Develop a roadmap offering opportunities for a supportive institutional ecosystem for transitioning to regenerative agriculture.

IMPACT

1. Proper incentivisation of regenerative agriculture can improve yield, conserve water and nutrients, and mitigate climate change.
2. This project can lead to an improved understanding of key levers to incentivise the agricultural sector to adopt regenerative agriculture practices.
3. Transformation to regenerative techniques will encourage climate resiliency.
4. The resultant outputs will provide pathways and tangible strategies for upscaling regenerative agriculture.
5. The project will build interactions and exchanges between stakeholders involved in regenerative agriculture.