Evaluate the effectiveness of indigenous knowledge in sustainable agricultural development (study of area: Gogtapeh rural district of Bilehsavar county)

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Tahereh sadeghloo, Associate Professor of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad

2 master of geography and rural planning, payame noor university of Bileh savar


Extended Abstract
According to increasing awareness about abuse of modern technologies in many field on natural resources and traditional values of communities, especially, rural values, indigenous knowledge has been emphasized as an important base for successful and effective science to development. Indigenous knowledge (IK) is socio-economically affordable, sustainable, involves minimum risk to rural farmers and producers, and it is better for conserving natural resources. Attention to this kind of knowledge is needed and introduction for local and comprehensive development because, it result from direct experiments of natural environment that tie to identifying of cultural situation and social environment of these communities. Rural communities’ indigenous knowledge is one of the most important tools for coping with environmental, social and economical problems for rural life continuity. In recent years, despite to replacement of modern knowledge with past local and indigenous approaches, social and environmental impacts of modern technologies, has increased requirements of back to previous approaches and integrating indigenous knowledge with modern for gaining the best results of development. IK is an important part of the various fields, including agriculture, health, veterinary, and arts and crafts. For instance, the agricultural practices have increasingly proved to be productive, sustainable and ecologically sound, even under extraordinarily difficult conditions due to the utilization of IK in developing countries.
In the social sciences, there are basically two approaches for carrying out: research quantitative (relational) and qualitative (explanatory). Considering to the nature of the study, the qualitative approach has been adopted to carryout research. The study investigates how we learn from local people and how they perceive, value, use and conserve the environment and natural resources (Braiones, 1996 and Mandonda, 1997). This study presents preliminary findings from a mixed methods research project and the primary objective of this paper is to identify the Indigenous Knowledge used in sustainable agriculture. The aim of the paper is to demonstrate the importance of managing indigenous knowledge for sustainable Agricultural performances in the developing countries. Therefore, current paper, measuring and assessing the role of rural indigenous knowledge in Gogtapeh rural district from Bilehsavar County on agricultural economic development by descriptive- analyzing methodology, is the main goal of research. For this regard, we use of field study and data gathering by questionnaire in case of study area. Our sample study includes 298 farmers of sample rural that chose by Cochran formula.
In the semi-structured interviews, 298 smallholder farmers participated in the study, where 88% were men and 12% were women. The gendered nature of the social, culture, economic and policy systems may have limited women farmers from participating in the study. The mean age of the respondents was 42, where the majority of the respondents (41.9%) were between 30 to 430 years, while (27.2%) respondents were between 20 to 30 years, and (21.5%) respondents were 40 to50 years. The findings showed that (64%) respondents had some level of formal schooling and about (36%) had College education. After data gathering and analyzing in SPSS software, gained result show that indigenous knowledge had a less than medium effect on economical dimensions as like as income, rate of production, decreasing of production cost, parsimony in production resources and had a significant effect on environmental and natural resource of rural area. Dependence to new technologies and its tools and low level of farmers risk acceptability are the main causes for these results. Also, based on VICOR techniques, Damircheloo and Babak rural points had most and less effect from indigenous knowledge in agricultural development.
Result and discussion
There is much to learn from the IK system if we are to move toward interactive technology development from the conventional transfer of technology approach, it is feasible, efficient and cost effective to learn from the village – level experts. The study findings showed that IK can be used to manage agricultural in the local Communities. Indigenous knowledge should be recorded and used to devise innovative research for agricultural researchers, extension workers, development practioners, and environmentalists for sustainable agriculture development and management of natural resources. Understanding and conserving Indigenous Knowledge will help to sustain farming practices which will not cause so much plant genetic erosion and environmental deterioration. Indigenous knowledge should cater for sustainable food security and conservation of the variety and variability of animals, plants and very vital soil properties such as physical, biological and chemical properties. Traditional knowledge is vital to sustainable development of natural resources. Sustainable agriculture development and conservation of resources could be significantly advanced if modern scientific knowledge could be incorporated with the traditional knowledge system. From the foregoing interaction with the farmers, it can be concluded that they have experiential wisdom which they use to conserve and select location specific indigenous paddy varieties for obtaining sustainable yields. Poor socio-economic conditions and risk prone biophysical conditions of farming do not permit the adoption of high energy based farming technologies by the tribal’s.


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