Agricultural Extension, Community-Based Development, and Conflict

  • Kenneth Menz RMIT University
Keywords: agricultural extension, community-based development, conflict, Mindanao, Philippines


This paper is the first of a series regarding a project that aims to develop an improved model for agricultural extension in conflict-affected areas of Mindanao. The paper contains a literature review undertaken to determine whether there are conceptual or practical pointers available that would facilitate the achievement of the project objectives. The paper commences with an overview of the development of agricultural extension, leading into a discussion of the role of agricultural extension in conflict areas, in general, and then specifically in relation to Mindanao. The commonality between the principles of agricultural extension and community-based development is recognized, especially for conflict areas. In such areas, building on existing community or farmer-based approaches is likely to be more sustainable post conflict (as opposed to “imposing” solutions from outside). This may be a good general strategy for externally funded development projects regardless of conflict, but it is especially important in a conflict environment. The literature review further explores and explains how social capital can be seen as a key component of both extension and other forms of community-based development. Social capital is particularly relevant in conflict-vulnerable situations, such as those that prevail in Mindanao.
Special Section