Presenter: Dr. R. Saravanan, Principal Investigator, m4agriNEI & Associate Professor (Communication), Central Agricultural University, India
Integrated, Interactive and Farmer-Specific Agro-Advisory System: Mobile based Agro-Advisory System in North-East India (m4agriNEI) is an innovative mix of mobile, web and IVRS applications along with the integration of Common Service Centres (tele-centres) and human intermediaries based farmer specific agro-advisory system is jointly implemented by the Media Lab Asia and the Central Agricultural University in the Meghalaya State of North-East India. M4agriNEI is a mobile interface at front end for the farmers and web interface at the back end for the agricultural experts. The system allows transmitting the data through voice, text, images and videos from both end (farmers to expert and back). Also the farmer can call the system to get any information as well as to get the agro-advisory services. This system will provide the options to the farmer to subscribe for the various agriculture and allied information services. Farmer will receive information (SMS / Voice Call /Picture/ Video clippings) for only that services for which farmer has subscribed and has an option at a later date to either select some more services or unsubscribe to some of the existing services. The experts at back end (m4agriNEI agro-advisory laboratory with domain experts and virtual subject matter experts) can access to the database of the farmers (farmer particulars, farm history-land & crop details, and previous interactions with the agro-advisory system) while responding the farmer's queries. Further, designated farmer co-ordinators and rural youth will facilitate the registered farmers in getting farm information and knowledge and also they provide feedback to the m4agriNEI system. The basic frame work of m4agriNEI system is an outcome of a comprehensive farmers' need assessment and ICT initiatives evaluation study of 26 major ICT initiatives in India conducted by the consortium led by Media Lab Asia of Ministry of Communications and Information Technology with the research grant support from the World Bank funded National Agricultural Innovation Project of Indian Council of Agricultural Research.