Welcome to the SFI Podcast series. Each episode explores a specific theme in relation to sustainability, livelihood and civic action issues in India through conversations with academics, development practitioners, grassroots activists and others in the field.
Swati Renduchintala - Scaling agroecological transitions through local facilitation
About the Speaker: Swati has been working as a development professional for more than 7 years. An engineering graduate she did her masters from IRMA and joined as a Young Professional in the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM). Later, then worked with Grameen Foundation India and was part of the Client Impact and Social performance team. For the past four years, she has been working with the Andhra Pradesh Community-managed Natural farming programme. There, her role has been that of an integrator, working directly with the Executive Vice-chairman of the programme. she has anchored the Natural farming Fellowships – A unique project that has engaged with 300+ young Agri graduates across AP. She is also involved in programme communications and supports the fundraising team.
About this podcast: In this interview, Swati traces the journey of the Andhra Pradesh Community-managed Natural Farming initiative (APCNF), especially through the programme's focus on training young agri-graduates as Natural Farming Fellows. She delves into the motivation for the project, the ongoing challenges, as well as promising outcomes that could provide directions for future work. Listen in to know more about the pioneering efforts of APCNF in enabling sustainable transitions at scale.
Ajit Kanitkar - Social Enterprises and Rural Livelihoods
About the Speaker: Dr Ajit Kanitkar is currently working as a senior researcher with the VikasAnvesh Foundation supported by Tata Education and Development Trust. Earlier, he was with Ford Foundation. He has also worked with the Swiss Agency on Development and Cooperation and has taught at the Institute of Rural Management Anand. His research interests include management of social enterprises and cooperatives. He has published extensively in professional journals including three books on the themes of entrepreneurship and management of cooperatives. He recently co-edited a book titled Farming Futures: Emerging Social Enterprises in India
About this podcast: In this interview, Dr Kanitkar explained the history and evolution of social enterprises in India, and how such initiatives need to focus on issues of access, assurance and affordability in order to be inclusive. He further explained how agri-based social enterprises face some unique challenges and opportunities that need to be understood through field-based case studies. Using insightful examples, he delved into questions of scale, along with some guidance for young professionals interested in starting a social enterprise. Do give a listen to know more!