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This project was developed through a series of consultations involving the consortium partners and other ICT4D experts. The CPI (Dr.Shaik N.Meera) has been involved in different studies related to ICTs in agricultural (rice, particularly) development for quite some time. During the initial meeting called for by the Project Director, DRR during October 2006, the ICT and KM concepts were thoroughly discussed and a concept note has been prepared which is eventually submitted to the NAIP for funding.
During the year 2008, based on the interest shown towards this project, CRRI has been requested to develop a similar concept note with an idea to get their perspective. During the meeting called for by NAIP on 1st September 2008 at New Delhi, these concept notes were thoroughly discussed and a baseline methodology was evolved. This was followed by development of original base paper and a series of discussion meeting with the CoPIs on the development of RKMP.
The full length project proposal has been submitted by DRR in the month of October 2008 which was sent to the Reviewers. The PIU-NAIP facilitated a meeting on 27th November 2008, in view of the interest shown by IRRI and CIMMYT, under the Chairmanship of DDG (CS). Due to preoccupation, the DDG (CS) could not attend and the meeting was held under the Chairmanship of ND, NAIP. During the meeting, Dr. Shaik N. Meera, CPI made a brief presentation of the proposal. The proposal was appreciated by all for its completeness. The Participants from IRRI and CIMMYT observed the commonalities in interest and vision in serving the stakeholder through efficient utilization of ICT tools. On a specific point of the involvement of IRRI, the consortium expressed their interest in keeping them engaged throughout in consultations, feedback, exchange of ideas etc. IRRI suggested that their e-learning material could be adopted in the project with suitable modifications/customization. As per the discussions held by the Directors of DRR and CRRI with IRRI representatives, it was decided that, IRRI may act as the Consulting and Convergent Partners of the Consortium.
The CPI and CL have received the Reviewers comments from PIU, NAIP during December 2008. Keeping in view the reviewers comments and other inputs from experts, a final proposal has been prepared. This proposal has been shared with the consortium partners before ‘Stakeholders Workshop’. DRR has organized a one day Workshop of the Consortium Partners on 9th January 2009 at Directorate of Rice Research, Rajendranagar Hyderabad. The workshop was aimed at fine-tuning the proposal and to come up with proper budget projections for each of the consortium partners. In view of the comments of the O&MAG Committee meeting which was held on 14th January 2009, the proposal is revised once again. The O&MPC meeting and Cost Committee meeting held on 21st January 2009 gave few suggestions for fine-tuning the proposal and the budget.
Financial sanction was received from NAIP in April 2009 and the project was officially launched on 16th June 2009.