Sustainable development in north east India

NERCORMP, a joint development project of IFAD and Government of India, works towards the objective of creating livelihood for vulnerable groups while contributing to environmental conservation.


The North Eastern Region Community Resource Management Project (NERCORMP) aims to address the existing issues of inefficient government service mechanism in the livelihood sector and the absence of ideal development projects in the north-east region of India. The project, implemented jointly by the International Fund for Agricultural Development and the Government of India represented through the North Eastern Council, brings together the knowledge, expertise and ideologies of the government, IFAD, local civil societies and the communities to unleash the potentials for development tapped in the backward areas.

This case study captures the impact of the project in Meghalaya, and describes the bottom-up model as the project emphasizes on active community participation in the planning and implementation processes. Formation of community building organisations are a key to implementation – Natural Resource Management Groups and Self Help Groups are formed in the project villages for this purpose.

Further, NERCORMP assists in generating various livelihood options focused on agriculture and forest based, such as organic agriculture, sustainable shifting cultivation, livestock and fisheries, forestry, Non-Timber Forest Produce (NTFP), medicinal and aromatic plants, and non-farm enterprises such as eco-tourism, handloom and handicrafts. While creating these livelihood opportunities, efforts are made to conserve the rich biodiversity in the region. A major endeavour in this direction has been the awareness campaigns that were taken up to demonstrate effective environment friendly ways of managing shifting cultivation.

While the absence of efficient local NGOs is identified as its major challenge, its sustainable success in the conflict areas is highlighted as the project’s major impact in the region. Nevertheless, positive response to the initiatives in two hilly districts of the Meghalaya has encouraged the Government of India to launch its second phase in 2012. The Planning Commission, the Ministry of DoNER and the North Eastern Council will be supporting the activities of this phase.

This case study was published in December 2011.

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