Hello from India!

Good evening from the 113 degree heat of Ahmedabad, India. I am interning with the Gujarat Institute of Development Research (GIDR) where I am evaluating watershed development programs that were initiated by the central government to sustain productivity of dry and semi-arid regions of the country by adopting more efficient production and conservation techniques. This research effort, undertaken at GIDR for evaluating these watershed development programs, is known as the “Forum of Watershed Research and Policy Dialogue”. The forum focuses on watershed development sustainability, gender and caste equity, and democratization in rural India.

At the moment I am primarily conducting field investigations to determine the spatial distribution of groundwater withdrawal scenarios by farmers in select rural watersheds, (2) collaborating with an evaluation team in analyzing the collected field data and determining the program efficiency on three scales (household level, farm level, and watershed level), and (3) evaluating the impact of technology on the economic welfare of households in the select watersheds.

We basically want to answer the question of  “What impact do watershed development activities have on rural areas, especially groundwater resources, agricultural production, and socioeconomic conditions?” The ultimate goal is to help policymakers create guidelines for the watershed development programs in the state.

I’m hoping that with my background in hydrology and environmental science I can bridge development scenarios with water management with technological advancement and water policy. Stay tuned!

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About sachinshah

Sachin Shah completed his undergraduate at the University of Texas at Austin Jackson School of Geosciences with a degree in Hydrogeology in 1999. Sachin spent nine years at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in Atlanta, Georgia and Austin, Texas. He worked primarily on water resources issues including international transboundary water concerns, drought mitigation, and using new technologies to understanding groundwater resource availability and quality. Sachin has travelled to various parts of the U.S. and the world conducting hydrologic research in such places as Honduras after tropical storm Mitch and the United Arab Emirates. In 2009, Sachin made the decision to resign from his post at USGS to refocus his energy towards non-profit management, and environmental and climate change policy. Sachin is a first year Masters Global Policy Studies graduate student at the University of Texas LBJ School of Public Affairs and hopes to have a nonprofit focusing on equitable allocation of water resources in rural areas.

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