NAPA Provided Research Mini-Grants to Researchers in Nepal
The Resource and Capacity Building Committee (RCBC) of Association of Nepalese Agricultural Professionals of Americas (NAPA, http://www.napaamericas.org/) has established a competitive Research Mini-Grants (RMG) program to fund applied research projects in Nepal.
Through this grant, NAPA seeks to support Nepal-based educational and non-profit research organizations to conduct small-scale high-impact research in the fields of Agriculture and Allied Sciences (AAA). The overarching goal of this program is to help conduct utility focused research on education, and extension projects for productive, economically viable, and environmentally sustainable plant and animal-based agricultural systems.
Responding to the RCBC’s first Request for Application (RFP) dated March 1, 2019, thirty-two professionals submitted their research proposals. A large majority of the applicants were undergraduate students (20), followed by master’s (7) and doctoral (3 students and 2 university faculty). The applicants represent Agriculture and Forestry University (17), Tribhuvan University (13), and Kathmandu University (2). The proposals were in the field of horticulture, animal health, food science, and cereal production, among others.
After two rounds of blind review of each proposal by three NAPA members, NAPA Executive Committee with recommendations from RCBC decided to fund 12 proposals amounting NRs. 360,865.00 in support of individual research not exceeding NRs. 30,000.00 each. Eight awardees were from Agricultural and Forestry University, three were from Tribhuvan University, and one was from Kathmandu University. Nine of them were undergraduates, two were master’s students, and one was a faculty. Five awardees were females.
NAPA, with the coordination of its Nepal Liaison Mr. Kiran Ojha, organized a program for mini-grant contract signing and distribution of first half grant funds on May 27, 2019, at Samudayik Sewa Bahudeshiya Sahakari Sanstha Limited, Satdobato, Lalitpur, Nepal. The program began with an introduction of the participants, welcome note by Dr. Ramjee Ghimire, NAPA RCBC member, and Research and Policy Brief Editor-in-Chief, and a note by Mr. Kiran Ojha. Then Dr. Ghimire distributed the first half grant funds to awardees.
Delivering his note, Dr. Ghimire congratulated awardees for being selected for this grant and wished them success in their research endeavors. He added that NAPA is encouraged by the enthusiasm Nepalese agricultural professionals has shown to this program and look forward to impactful research outcomes. He suggested awardees to keep in contact with and seek advice from their own and NAPA advisors as and when needed during their research. NAPA is anticipating researchers to produce publication worthy deliverables and some of them may be published in NAPA’s own publications –GJAAS Journal and research policy brief.
Awardees were excited and encouraged to be part of this grant and to be able to get connected with NAPA. NAPA RCBC will follow-up with the awardees to monitor the grants during the research and assess outcome after completion of these funded projects.
NAPA and RCBC would like to extend a big thank you to all professionals and supporting hands in Nepal, diaspora in the U.S. and beyond for their enthusiasm, interest to conceive, contribute, and implement the Research Mini-Grants program.