Pathways to Agricultural Skill Development in the Indian Himalayas


Pathways to Agricultural Skill Development in the Indian Himalayas

Theatre 2
221 Bouverie Street, Theatre 2
221 Bouverie Street


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T: 8344 9395

Faced with a ‘generation problem’ in agriculture, several countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America are currently introducing formal vocational education and training initiatives to develop agricultural skills and foster greater interest in farming among youth. In India, 4-6 week skill development courses have been introduced in more than 170 job roles in the agricultural sector over the last few years. These courses aim to increase farmers’ outputs and income, support rural livelihoods, foster agricultural sustainability, and train a new generation of agricultural entrepreneurs. Yet, given that (a) most young people in rural India aspire to work outside of the agricultural sector; and (b) practising farmers often feel that they already possess ‘practical’ agricultural skills, it is often unclear who will enrol in these programs and for what purpose.

Drawing on interviews with 52 trainees who have enrolled in these skill development programmes in the Himalayan state of Himachal Pradesh, this seminar will explore the factors that are motivating people to enrol in these short courses to develop their agricultural skills. I will explore the ways in which these motivations are strongly inflected by the gender, caste, and education levels of trainees.


  • Dr Trent Brown
    Dr Trent Brown, ARC DECRA Fellow