SRI Adoption Through Innovative Alliance-Building: Learning from the SRI-LMB


Abha Mishra*

Leader, Regenerative Farming, RoundGlass Wellbeing Pvt. Ltd., Mohali, India;
Former Director, ACISAI, AIT, Thailand
*Corresponding author email:

Volume 15(Special Issue), 2022   ;   Click here for Pdf




Given the challenges presented by climate change, water shortage, and land degradation, sustainable agriculture strategies that increase farming systems’ resilience are needed more than ever. This is especially true for sustaining rice production which is the staple food for hundreds of millions of people. Agroecology-based System of Rice Intensification (SRI) is seen as a way forward in transforming food and agriculture systems, especially for the smallholder farmers to build an inclusive, safe, sustainable and resilient society. The findings reported here are based on the engagement that the Asian Center of Innovation for Sustainable Agriculture Intensification (ACISAI), Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), Thailand had in the Lower Mekong River (LMB) basin countries (Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam) using a regional project commonly known as “SRI-LMB”. Using a local, national and regional innovation platform that was designed to systematize engagement and strengthen communication for fuelling innovation, more than 15 institutions were involved in the six-year-long farmers’ participatory action research (FPAR) trial located in the 33 districts of 11 provinces in the LMB. The SRI was used as an ‘entry point’ for such engagement-led-transition. Average yield along with factor productivity increased by more than 50% with a significant reduction in cultivation costs, energy use, and greenhouse gas emission. The purpose of this paper is to share results, and also to detail three key processes that led to innovations in different areas for better adoption: 1. the multi-stakeholder platforms used for action; 2. The FPAR that led to community development; the evidence-based policy and strategies that can support the sustainability of rural livelihoods.