Titled as Developing a Community-Based Development Framework for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr. Ilar discussed the governance of a rice-based community intervention (RBCI) in the Philippines as part of the government's initiatives for agriculture and rural development (ARD) and how this adheres to the community-based development (CBD) concept.
Through his analysis, he came up with a proposed CBD framework for ARD which addresses the gaps identified in the project design and governance of the RBCI. The framework uses the bottom-up approach where participation of the local people in governance is given prime importance. More so, the framework recognizes and addresses the real needs and problems of farmers, i.e., they are given the opportunity to create their own solutions for their problems, thus making them lead actors in the development process.
As the first graduate of the PhD in Development Studies program of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB), Mr. Ilar received enthusiastic feedback from his fellow students in the program. After completion of his studies last semester, Mr. Ilar resumed his position as Supervising Science Research Specialist at the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), where he contributes to the development of farmer communities through rice science. SEARCA continues to support its graduate scholars who are seen to play key roles in the development of agriculture in the Southeast Asian region.