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Quenching the thirst: Open Educational Resources in support of drought mitigation at the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics
Balaji, Venkataraman and Dar, William

PublishedJanuary 2013
SeriesPerspectives on open and distance learning: Open Educational Resources: An Asian perspective
Chapter 12, Pages 185-194
PublisherCommonwealth of Learning, OER Asia
EditorsDhanarajan, Gajaraj and Porter, David

Drought threatens the economic well-being of hundreds of millions of people and can have a long-term impact on the ecology in many places across the globe. Recent inter-governmental efforts reveal that preparedness is more effective than relief in mitigating drought’s impact. To foster drought preparedness amongst rural communities, highly focussed learning and support processes and systems are required. The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics established a group of relevant activities under the rubric of the Virtual Academy for the Semi-Arid Tropics. These activities are anchored by a set of practices for learning content creation that are premised on creating and/or using OER in the form of reusable learning objects. The intended groups of learners are rural women whose exposure to the classroom milieu is nil or limited at best. The process of content creation and the support systems for content delivery were designed to accommodate these learners’ requirements. This chapter provides a number of the details of this process, then presents and discusses the results. What emerges is a picture of a value-chain wherein OER from highly regarded technical resources is created for the intended audience, iterated for quality and delivered via rural information centres to the learners; these learners become the new contact points for hundreds of farmers to consult as sources of expertise to solve a range of production-related problems in drought situations. Specially developed techniques involving a geographic information system are also briefly described.

Keywords cell phone · drought · geographic information system · maps · preparedness · rainfall · reusability · reusable learning object · semi-arid tropics · surface water · videoconference · village information centre · vulnerability

Published atVancouver, BC
RefereedDoes not apply
Export optionsBibTex · EndNote · Tagged XML · Google Scholar

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