Keshav Lall Maharjan (Dr. of Agriculture in Agricultural Economics, Kyoto University, Japan) is currently a professor at the Graduate School for International Development and Cooperation, Hiroshima University, Japan, where he has been teaching, conducting research, and chairing various steering and decision-making committees since its foundation in 1994. He gives lectures for graduate students on subjects including rural economics, south Asian studies, international development, and cooperation studies. He conducts weekly seminars at the graduate school that address pertinent issues in agricultural economics, rural development, sustainable development, cultural dynamics, climate change, and rural livelihood strategies in developing countries. He also offers support for graduate students writing their Master’s theses and doctoral dissertations on the related topics of development sciences, educational development, and cultural and regional studies, which include issues concerning natural resource management, food security, poverty dynamics, local governance, rural society, and community dynamics. In doing so he considers agriculture and rural regions as not merely sources of cheap labor, cheap food and cheaper intermediate inputs, and subordinate to urban areas and centers as marginal and peripheral regions but also representing a dignifi ed way of life for people who are guardians of nature and are more conscious about the earth, humans, and their interaction, so as to sustain this culture and civilization for generations hereafter. Rural regions are the places that make these things happen. Hence, fi eldwork to grasp the diverse realities of rural regions location-specifi cally before generalizing the research is given importance in his research, lectures, and his work with graduate students in terms of their research, writing journal articles and dissertations. Some 20 students have received their Ph.D. from Hiroshima University under his guidance.
In order to disseminate research fi ndings, consolidate ideas and concepts, and share knowledge with other professionals, he regularly participates in local, national, and international seminars and conferences organized by academic societies, research institutions, and various organizations and like-minded individuals, including agricultural economists, ruralogists, sociologists, environmentalists, anthropologists, educationalists, policy makers, development practitioners, farmers, social activists, local leaders, and opinion shapers.
Some of his earlier books in English include Peasantry in Nepal: A Study on Subsistence Farmers and Their Activities Pertaining to Food Security , Hiroshima: Research Center for Regional Geography, Hiroshima University, 2003 and Impacts of Irrigation and Drainage Schemes on Rural Economic Activities in Bangladesh, Hiroshima: Research Center for Regional Geography, Hiroshima University, 1997. He has also contributed chapters to publications including Climate Change: Asian Perspective , Jaipur: Rawat Publication, 2012; Public Policy and Local Development—Opportunities and Constraints , International Geographical Union Commission on Geography and Public Policy, 2008; Political and Social Transformation in North India and Nepal , New Delhi: Manohar Publishers, 2007; Small-Scale Livelihoods and Natural Resource Management in Marginal Areas of Monsoon Asia , Dehra Dun: Bishen Singh Mahendra Pal Singh, 2006; New Challenges Facing Asian Agriculture under Globalization , Selangor: Malaysian Agricultural Economics Association, 2005; Translating Development: The Case of Nepal , New Delhi: Social Science Press, 2003; and Sustainable Agriculture, Poverty and Food Security, Jaipur: Rawat Publications, 2002. He contributes to various related academic journals and has more than one hundred blind reviewed articles to his credit. He has also produced numerous books and journal articles in Japanese.
Niraj Prakash Joshi, Ph.D., is currently working as a research coordinator (associate professor) at Nepal Engineering College’s Centre for Postgraduate Studies ( nec - CPS) and is responsible for guiding postgraduate students in their research in the fields of natural resource management, integrated water resource management, construction management and transportation engineering and management. He received his Ph.D. in rural/agricultural economics from Hiroshima University in 2011 and served the university as an assistant professor from 2011 to 2012 after having been a research assistant there from 2008 to 2011. During his tenure at Hiroshima he has above all been responsible for advising students on research project development and implementation and on presenting and writing academic reports. He is also intensively engaged in research related to poverty, food insecurity, rural livelihoods and climate change in developing countries, with a particular focus on the povertyridden region of the far-western rural hills of Nepal, as well as the impoverished and marginalized community Chepang in Nepal’s central remote hills. These research activities directly relied on quantitative as well as qualitative data collected through field surveys, which he was directly involved in right from the initial stage of research project development. Hence, he has gained key experience in the course of various research internships, as well as in academic and independent research projects funded by various international research funding agencies, experience he has used to publish 18 research articles. He has presented papers related to poverty, food insecurity, rural livelihoods and climate change at several national and international conferences and has gathered further direct field experience in the other remote districts of Nepal, conducting mid-term assessments for development projects implemented by government agencies (Directorate of Livestock—poultry project for a self-employment generation and poverty reduction in far and Midwestern development region) and nongovernment agencies (Helvetas—benefi t cost analysis of Helvetas project in western and midwestern development region). He has also served as a socio-economic advisor in the development of four different projects focusing on bananas, goats, buffalo and citrus fruits in different parts of Nepal in 2005, which were funded by the Nepal Agriculture Research Development Fund.