Participatory action research on drip irrigation

Conducting participatory action research with farmers and line agencies for demonstrating, disseminating and scaling up drip irrigation

Most farming in the uplands of Nepal’s midhills is rainfed with many fields remaining fallow during the dry season due to lack of irrigation water. The People and Resource Dynamics Project (PARDYP) water demand and supply survey identified scarcity of irrigation water as a major issue in Nepal’s midhills. To assess the potential of drip irrigation to address this problem, the University of British Columbia (UBC) in 2000/2001, in collaboration with PARDYP, tested a low cost irrigation drip set and a more costly set in the Jhikhu Khola watershed; and PARDYP and Tribhuvan University’s Institute of Engineering (Nepal) tested the low cost set with farmers at another site at Kubinde village, Kavre.


  • Lack of systematic on-farm research on drip irrigation
  • Weak institutional collaboration for developing, disseminating and scaling up drip technology
  • Inadequate water available for agriculture alongside strong seasonality and poor irrigation facilities


    • To test, demonstrate, and evaluate drip irrigation systems under local conditions with multiple stakeholders
    • To share results and experiences with communities to scale up the technology

      WOCAT database reference: QA NEP6

      Location: Jhikhu Khola watershed, Kabhrepalanchok district, Nepal

      Approach area: 111 km2

      Land use: Annual cropping

      Climate: Humid subtropical

      Related technology: Low cost drip irrigation, QT NEP6

      Target Users: Land users, Extension workers

      Compiled by: Madhav Dhakal, ICIMOD

      Date: August 2006, updated September 2006

light green: districts in 2007