Humnath Bhandari

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Humnath Bhandari

Humnath is an agricultural and environmental economist based in Bangladesh. He is leading a project on “Tracking Changes in Rural Poverty in Household and Village Economies in South Asia (Bangladesh). The main focus of the project is to study the development pathways in rural livelihoods and poverty in South Asia with the help of the farm household panel data collected in the region. Besides, he is involved in socioeconomic research activities of Cereal Systems Initiatives in South Asia (CSISA), Stress-Tolerant Rice for Rice Africa and Asia (STRASA), and Rice Variety Adoption and Monitoring Survey projects.

He has fifteen years of post-PhD experience in agricultural research and management. Most of his research is focused on analysis of natural resources management, rural livelihood systems, income diversification, poverty and food security, commercialization and diversification of rice-based cropping systems, economic analysis of agricultural projects, agricultural technology adoption and impact, and agricultural marketing, food value chains, and agribusiness. He has extensive experience of working in several countries in Asia. He uses both qualitative and quantitative research methods to study real world problems of farmers. He has strong competency to manage and analyze large-scale cross-section and time-series data using state-of-the-art econometric methods and statistical software package like GAMS, LIMDEP, LINGO, SHAZAM, SPSS, and STATA.


  • Farmer livelihood studies
  • Poverty
  • Food security
  • Economic analysis of agricultural projects
  • Agricultural technology adoption and impact
  • Agricultural commercialization and diversification
  • Agricultural marketing and value chain
  • Agribusiness


  • Straight PhD in Agricultural Economics, University of the Philippines Los Baños, Philippines (2000)
  • BSc in Agriculture, Tribhuvan University, Nepal (1993)


  • Scientist, Social Sciences Division, IRRI (2010 to present)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, “Water productivity, resources conservation, and livelihood improvements in upper catchments of Southeast Asia,” IRRI, Philippines, (2007- 2010)
  • Japan Society Promotion of Science (JSPS) Postdoctoral Fellow, “Role of social capital in irrigation management in Southeast Asia,” Japan International Research Center for Agricultural Sciences (JIRCAS), Japan, (2005- 2007)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, “Economic costs of drought and rice farmers’ coping mechanisms in Asia,” IRRI, Philippines, (2003- 2005)
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Agriculture Economics, Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science (IAAS), Tribhuvan University, Chitwan, Nepal, (2000- 2003)


  • Best paper published in Agricultural Economics Journal in 2014 (2015)
  • Japan Society for Promotion of Science (JSPS) research fellowship, Japan (2005–2007)
  • Mahendra Bidhya Bhusan, decorated by the then His Majesty King Gyanendra, Nepal (2001)
  • International student academic excellence award, UPLB, Philippines (2000)
  • Life membership of PHI KAPPA PHI International Honour Society for Academic Excellence, Philippines (2000)
  • Life membership of PI GAMMA MU International Honour Society of Social Sciences, Philippines (2000)
  • Life membership of GAMMA SIGMA DELTA International Honour Society of Agriculture, Philippines (2000)
  • Winrock International scholarship to pursue MSc and PhD degrees, Nepal (1995)
  • Reviewer of research papers submitted to professional journals such as Agricultural Economics, Agricultural Systems, Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography, Tropics, and Journal of Agriculture and Animal Science.


  1. Khanam TS, Bhandari H, Mohanty S. 2015. Rice price inflation and its impacts on poverty and livelihoods: Insights from Bangladesh. Journal of Food, Agriculture & Environment, 13(2):107-117.
  2. Balagtas JV, Bhandari H, Cabrera E. Mohanty S, Hossain M. 2014. Did the commodity price spike increase rural poverty? Evidence from a long-run panel in Bangladesh. Agricultural Economics, 45(3):303-312. Received award for the best paper published in Agricultural Economics Journal in 2014.
  3. Bhandari H. 2014. The economics of groundwater irrigation in rice-based systems in Nepal. LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing, GMbH & Co. KG, Saarbrucken (Germany). 300p.
  4. Bhandari H, Mohanty S. 2014. Reducing the environmental footprint of rice production. A policy note. IN Dawe D, Jaffee S, Santos N., editors. Rice in the shadow of skyscrapers: policy choices in a dynamic East and Southeast Asian setting. The World Bank-FAO-IRRI joint publication. Pp 47-53.
  5. Rahman MS, Mandal MAS, Kajisa K, Bhandari H. 2014. Structural changes of irrigation in Bangladesh: a synthesis of FGDs from 96 villages. IN Humphreys E, Tuong TP, Buisson MC, Pukinskis I, Phillips M. 2015. Revitalizing the Ganges coastal zone: Turning science into policy and practices. The Conference Proceedings. Colombo, Sri Lanka: CGIAR Challenge Program on Water and Food (CPWF). Pp. 197-216.
  6. Pandey S, Rosegrant MW, Sulser T, Bhandari H. 2011. Rice price crisis: causes, impacts, and solutions. Journal of Agriculture and Development, 7(2):1-15.
  7. Pandey S, Paris T, Bhandari H. 2010. Household income dynamics and changes in gender roles in rice farming. In: Pandey et al., editors. Rice in the global economy: strategic research and policy issues for food security. Los Banos (Philippines): IRRI. Pp 93-112.
  8. Bhandari H, Yasunobu K. 2009. What is social capital? A comprehensive review of the concept. Asian Journal of Social Sciences, 37(3):480-510.
  9. Pandey S, Bhandari H, Ding SJ, Prapertchob P, Sharan R, Naik D, Taunk SK, Sastri ASRAS. 2007. Coping with drought in rice farming in Asia: insights from a cross-country comparative study. Agricultural Economics, 37(S1): 213-224.
  10. Pandey S, Bhandari H, Hardy B, editor. 2007. Economic costs of drought and rice farmers’ coping mechanisms. International Rice Research Institute. 203 p.

Humnath Bhandari
Dr. Humnath Bhandari

Agricultural Economist