What is AWM?
Agricultural Water Management is using water carefully and efficiently for maximum reward. It covers any activity that involves conserving, preserving or using water for growing crops.
Unless farmers have reliable access to water, efforts to improve soil fertility and access to markets may fail.[/note]
What makes a promising solution?
- It has a direct impact on the livelihoods of farmers
Either by increasing the food they can grow for themselves and their families or by enabling them to diversify into crops for market. A good solution will bring benefits to the smallholder and to the local community.
- It can be duplicated across a much larger area
The best water management solutions are those which can be easily outscaled. The more farmers who can benefit from an intervention, the more cost effective for the investor it becomes.
- It is clear how it can be put into practice
If you can easily see how something can be implemented, it stands a good chance of being taken up.
- It will benefit women as well as men
Promising AWM solutions should target both men and women. Women should not be under-represented in the solution-if 15% of farmers are women at least 15% of farmers should be able to adopt the solution.
- It will not have a negative effect on the environment
Some water management techniques can have a detrimental effect on the environment – reducing the water tables or interfering with the natural flow of rivers. For a solution to be viable, it must not harm the local environment. A truly great solution will bring positive environmental benefits.