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The water savings and methane reductions from improved irrigation management in Bangladesh
Last registered on April 01, 2019


Trial Information
General Information
The water savings and methane reductions from improved irrigation management in Bangladesh
Initial registration date
April 20, 2017
Last updated
April 01, 2019 8:53 AM EDT
Primary Investigator
Tufts University
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
International Rice Research Institute
PI Affiliation
Tufts University
Additional Trial Information
On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Historically, rice is grown in fields that are flooded during most of the monsoon season. However in recent years, mainly due to the availability of tube well irrigation, rice is increasingly being planted in the dry season using shallow or deep tube well water. This trend has led to an increase in groundwater extraction and depletion of water levels in many rice-producing regions.

Researchers at the International Rice Research Institute have developed a technology called Alternate Wetting and Drying (AWD) that works on the principle that the rice plant can tolerate up to 30% less water supply during the growing season relative to conventional methods of irrigation. This technique requires embedding a perforated plastic tube to monitor the water level in the rice field, which is irrigated each time the water level falls more than 15 cm below the soil surface.

The goal of the project is to evaluate the effect of AWD relative to conventional flood irrigation in rice. Our main question is: what is the impact of AWD adoption on farm incomes and water savings? How do these impacts vary across different physical and institutional environments such as shallow and deep water tables, pricing regimes for irrigation water and communal vs private tube well ownership? What is the farmer’s private willingness to pay for AWD technology? Because of the positive effect of AWD in reducing the depletion of groundwater stocks and lowering methane emissions from rice fields, there may be a gap between private and social benefits of the technology, necessitating the use of subsidies for widespread adoption by farmers. A critical aim of the study is to estimate both the private benefits via revealed preference and social benefits, where the latter is achieved by estimating direct effects on methane emissions.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Chakravorty, Ujjayant, Manzoor Dar and Kyle Emerick. 2019. "The water savings and methane reductions from improved irrigation management in Bangladesh ." AEA RCT Registry. April 01. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.2168-5.0.
Former Citation
Chakravorty, Ujjayant et al. 2019. "The water savings and methane reductions from improved irrigation management in Bangladesh ." AEA RCT Registry. April 01. http://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/2168/history/44492.
Experimental Details
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Water use, methane emissions, agricultural profits, take-up (demand)
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
The sample will consist of 10 farmers in each of 400 villages. The 10 farmers are those closes to the tubewell where irrigation water is withdrawn. Farmers in 200 treatment villages will receive the AWD pipe and training on its proper use. Farmers in the 200 control villages will receive neither of these. The randomization is stratified by the Upazila.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Random number generator
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
400 villages
Sample size: planned number of observations
4,000 farmers
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
10 farmers in each village
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB Name
Tufts University
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Analysis Plan
Analysis Plan Documents
Analysis Plan Year 1



Uploaded At: July 25, 2017

Analysis Plan Year 2

MD5: e61e24c8f64acd7529a146d60eb98426

SHA1: 0a82473b78065565704bde4ac6cf70a6895a68ee

Uploaded At: January 25, 2018

Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Is the intervention completed?
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
Program Files
Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)