National Rural Livelihoods Mission
Launched in 2011, the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) aims to link the rural poor in India to sustainable livelihood opportunities and financial services. 3ie, in collaboration with Ministry of Rural Development and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is working to generate rigorous evidence on the impacts of this large-scale programme on livelihood promotion and social mobilisation.
Under the closely related Swashakt evidence programme, 3ie is also funding the implementation and evaluation of innovative projects to support women's collective enterprises that may be operating in partnership with state rural livelihood missions.
In December 2015, 3ie was commissioned by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for quality assuring and generating evidence on various aspects of the NRLM. We are conducting impact evaluations, quality assuring selected evaluations on livelihood interventions and synthesising and mapping the available evidence on the effectiveness and efficiency of group-based livelihoods interventions.
3ie collaborated with the rural development ministry, the Gates Foundation and the World Bank to conduct a large-scale evaluation across nine states where the National Rural Livelihoods Project (NRLP) was implemented. The NRLP operates within the ambit of the NRLM and aims to build capacities of the national, state and union territory governments, and create an enabling environment to facilitate the transition of all their administration of Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana to NRLM.
In this report, authors detail the impacts of the National Rural Livelihoods Project on a range of household and individual level economic, social and empowerment outcomes and also assess the quality of institutions created by the programme. Key lessons from this evaluation are expected to inform the design and expansion of the programme. This report also caught the attention of the media, the main takeaways were discussed in IndiaSpend.
Evidence impact | 3ie evaluation informs discussions in the Indian Parliament
In September 2020, India’s Minister of Rural Development cited the 3ie multistate evaluation of the central government’s National Rural Livelihoods Programme. Responding to a question raised in the Upper House of Parliament on evaluations, the minister shared key findings from 3ie’s study. Parliamentary questions enable lawmakers to query the government on matters of public importance. The lawmaker’s questions pertained to the details and impacts of funding provided to SHGs under the DAY-NRLM and came weeks after the researchers shared evaluation findings with ministry officials.
Key activities under the programme
Evidence gap map on group-based livelihood interventions in L&MICs: This map takes stock of available evidence on the impact of group-based livelihoods programmes on economic, social and empowerment outcomes in low-and middle-income countries.
Synthesis of livelihoods programmes in L&MICs: This report systematically reviews existing evidence from group-based livelihoods interventions in L&MICs with the objective of answering what works, how, why and for whom.
Technical support for building an evidence-ready monitoring and evaluation system: In consultation with the Gates Foundation, 3ie collaborated with the Bihar Rural Livelihoods Mission (JEEVikA) to work on a management information system of a sanitation programme under the Lohiya Swachh Bihar Abhiyaan initiative. Please get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get more information about this management information system.
Formative research to inform the implementation of Project Mesha: To help women gain financial independence, the Bihar government piloted Project Mesha in 2016. This community-based pilot programme trained women SHG members in goat rearing in four blocks of Muzzafarpur district. 3ie, in collaboration with the Aga Khan Foundation, conducted a formative research study to understand and assess the context in which Project Mesha was planned and inform its implementation.
Process and impact evaluation of a rural development programme in Bihar: 3ie has conducted a process evaluation and an impact evaluation of the Women’s Advancement in Rural Development and Agriculture (WARDA) programme, which focuses on household economic welfare, as measured by income levels and women’s empowerment. Technoserve, JEEViKA and the Gates Foundation collaborated to provide technical assistance on this intervention, develop a multi-year roadmap to form and facilitate smallholding women farmers’ producer groups.
Can collectives help overcome challenges facing small and marginal farmers in India?
This brief summarises findings from a literature review that 3ie commissioned to understand how and whether farmer collectives have achieved their stated aims, and to analyse factors affecting their performance. This is part of a wider initiative to build and consolidate evidence on group-based livelihood initiatives in India.
These publications have been shared with permission from the World Bank. Any errors or omissions are the sole responsibility of the authors. You can also download all the resources here.
South Asia Agriculture and Rural Growth Impact Note Series
This series seeks to disseminate research and analysis focused on World Bank financed rural, agriculture and food systems programs in India.
- Are we listening? Results from a World Bank study on the effects of SHGs on deliberative political institutions
- Enhancing Women’s Empowerment: Evidence from Tamil Nadu
- Weathering the Storm: Role of SHGs in Mitigating the Impacts of Natural Disasters
- Combating Malnutrition: Can Group Procurement be Equitable? - Results from a Food Security Program in Rural Bihar
- Challenging Cultural Conventions : Qualitative Evidence from Jeevika
- Measuring Empowerment: JEEViKA’s Success in Empowering the Women of Rural Bihar - Results from a Retrospective Survey
- Caste, Gender and Jati: An Intersectional Analysis Aimed at Better Targeting Poverty Alleviation and Women’s Empowerment in Bihar, Orissa and Tamil Nadu
- Impact Evaluation: The Promise of Participatory Livelihood Programs - An Impact Evaluation of TRIPTI in Odisha
- Women in the Workforce: How has the National Rural Livelihoods Mission Improved Female Labor Force Participation
South Asia Agriculture and Rural Growth Discussion Note series
This series seeks to disseminate operational learnings and implementation experiences from World Bank financed rural, agriculture and food systems programs in South Asia:
- Social Inclusion: Implementation, Outcomes and Key Learnings
- Institution Building and Capacity Building in NRLM
- SHG-Bank Linkage: A Success Story
- Self-Help Group Members as Banking Agents for Deepening Financial Inclusion
- Transforming Rural Farm Livelihoods: The NRLM Journey
- Transforming Rural Non-Farm Livelihoods: The NRLM Journey
- Integration of Health and Nutrition into Livelihood Programs under DAY-NRLM
- Leveraging Institutional Platforms to Promote Convergence
- Moving Forward towards Rural Economic Transformation
- Leveraging Community Institutions to Support Agri-Business and Livelihoods in Jharkhand
- Learnings From Community-Based Small-Scale Irrigation in Tribal Areas of Jharkhand, India
- Building Last Mile Livestock Extension Services for Rural Communities in Jharkhand, India
- Leveraging Farmer Producer Companies to Transition to Market-Based Production Systems in Jharkhand
- Pioneering New Approaches to Rural Agri-Entrepreneurship Skills Development in Jharkhand, India
- Market Provisioning of Technology-Enabled Agricultural Services In India
- Building Rural Poultry Supply-Chains To Enhance Incomes Through Community-Driven Interventions