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Climate Information and Agricultural Practice in Adaptation to Climate Variability: The Case of Climate Field Schools in Indramayu, Indonesia

Authors

  • Prakarma Raja Siregar,

    Corresponding author
    • WALHI Institute and Indonesian Civil Society Forum on Climate Justice, Jakarta Selatan, Indonesia
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  • Todd A. Crane


Correspondence: Todd A. Crane, Technology and Agrarian Development, Wageningen University, Hollandseweg 1, 6706 KN Wageningen, the Netherlands. E-mail: todd.crane@wur.nl

Abstract

Inspired by the Farmer Field School methodology, a “Climate Field School” was conducted with farmers in the Indramayu region of Indonesia in 2003 to promote adaptive application of climate forecasts to crop selection decisions. However, five years after the Climate Field School, use of the forecasts is still virtually nonexistent. Analysis of farmers' production practices and rationales reveals lack of understanding of climate information is not a primary limiting factor. Instead, we find that the social and technical conditions of agricultural production influence farmers' ability and willingness to apply seasonal climate forecasts as adaptive tools. Furthermore, we analyze the ways that the attempted mode of capacity building affected outcomes in farmers' practices. The implications of our findings bear upon the development of climate information applications and the processes of local level adaptations to climate change and climate variability.

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