Moving Mountains

For mountains and people

Scaling up & out

Scaling up – or vertical expansion – can comprise: (a) programme institutionalisation means that the innovation, idea or solution is adopted by agencies at the provincial or national levels through policy action requiring pro-active promotion, engagement and advocacy; or (b) mainstreaming, which is generally externally driven and represents adoption by other agencies in their programmes as a policy, also requiring active engagement and facilitation.

Scaling out, or horizontal expansion adoption. Scaling out – or horizontal expansion – can comprise: (a) adoption or adaptation which is spontaneous, organic uptake or copying which may require demonstration; or (b) replication which may be assisted or externally driven by NGOs or projects which require facilitation and promotion.

Scaling Examples

Scaling up organic agriculture practices in Bhutan

Upon the request of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (MoAF), Royal Government of Bhutan, the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) through its Himalica Initiative extended its support to develop a roadmap – “Organic Agriculture Development Strategies: Roadmap for 12th Five Year Plan and Beyond” – which reviews the progress of participatory organic agriculture in Bhutan and proposes recommendations in scaling up these practices. As the Secretary states in the Roadmap’s foreword, this document came at the most opportune moment as the Ministry was preparing its 12th Five-Year Plan (2018–2023). The recommendations helped the Ministry prioritize organic agriculture, allocate resources, and mainstream its development plan to ensure sustainability.

The Roadmap holistically adopts agroecological approaches covering the entire country rather than confining the scope to specific areas. It aims to contribute to the national goal of carbon neutral, climate- and disaster-resilient development with an increase in the area under organic management (agriculture, livestock, forestry) from the current 40,000 acres to 50,125 acres; introduction of climate-resilient agricultural technologies and good practices; and an increase in the area under sustainable land management from the current 1,000 acres to 2,500 acres.

The strategies for the development of organic agriculture outlined in the Roadmap focus on soil and water management, crop and livestock management, and value chain promotion and are drawn substantially from an ICIMOD-supported Himalica pilot project implemented in Barshong Gewog of Tsirang Dzongkhag. These strategies align well with the Sustainable Development Goals, especially the goals concerning zero hunger, good health and well-being, responsible consumption and production, and climate action. The Roadmap as an integral part of the 12th Five-Year Plan can guide Bhutan’s phased transition to a predominantly organic state over a 10–15-year period, thus significantly scaling up ICIMOD’s interventions.

The strategies laid out in the Roadmap for the development of organic agriculture in Bhutan are applicable and transferable to other Himalayan countries and to mountainous and hilly countries in other regions of the world where traditional and subsistence farming is the norm and where the use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers is proliferating. Countries from the region such as Nepal, India (mountainous states from Jammu Kashmir in the west to North East India), Bangladesh (the Chittagong Hill Tracts), and Myanmar (hilly states) stand to benefit from the adoption of such an approach to organic agriculture.

News and features

Related Initiatives

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The South Asian Network for Development and Environmental Economics (SANDEE) is an initiative of the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) under the regional programme on Mountain Knowledge and Action Networks (MKAN).

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The vision of the Himalayan University Consortium (HUC) is to contribute to enhanced collaboration among the universities of the region and to promote centres of excellence on key topics relevant to the region.

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