Rice is cultivated under different types of production systems by farmers living in varied socioeconomic and agroecological conditions. Farmers' participation in technology assessment is essential in generating technologies suitable to their needs. The Technology Assessment and Refinement through Institution-Village Linkage Program (TAR-IVLP), promoted by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), adopts a holistic approach with the village as an operational unit.
The use of farmers' participatory research was the main component in the technology assessment. The CTCRI under ICAR implemented the TAR-IVLP in Chenkal village in Thiruvananthapuram District, Kerala State, southern India. Here, rice is cultivated as a transplanted crop under canal-irrigated conditions. Average productivity in this lowland production system is 1.9 t ha-1; the district average is 2.2 t ha-1. Conway et al (1987) revealed that not using highyielding varieties suited to local farming conditions contributed to the low productivity of this ricebased production system.