About Us

The Agro-Economic Research Centre (AERC) for the states of Gujarat and Rajasthan was established in July 1961 at the Sardar Patel University, Vallabh Vidyanagar by the Directorate of Economics and Statistics, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India, New Delhi. It was late Shri H.M. Patel (ICS retd.) who not only provided the vision for establishing such an Institute but also ensured the much needed support and encouragement for its growth at Vallabh Vidyanagar. AERC has been working as an associate institution of S. P. University and enjoying autonomy status in its working. The Centre has completed 52 glorious years (1961-2013) of its journey marked by both achievements and challenges. During these years, the Centre has emerged as a strong policy feedback centre of the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India due to hard work and strong commitment of the staff in the Centre. The focus of research effort in the initial stage was on comprehensive village surveys and resurveys in order to understand the process and direction of change at the village level. Subsequently, the emphasis of research has shifted to problem oriented studies.

The Centre has by now completed 152 problem-oriented studies, 21 village surveys and 4 village resurveys. Most of these research projects have been taken up by Centre on the recommendation of   the Government of   India and State Governments of Gujarat and Rajasthan. Some of the projects have also been sponsored by other national and international organizations. During its long journey, the Centre has brought remarkable improvement in every aspects of research including methodological base of the studies. The studies have come out with useful findings and policy implications for agricultural and rural development of the states of Gujarat and Rajasthan. Many seminars and conferences were organized by the Centre (jointly with Department of Economics) during these years. Since 1970, the Centre has been also organizing the work of Comprehensive Scheme to Study Cost of Cultivation of Principal Crops in Gujarat entrusted to the S P University by the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India. Ever since its inception, the Centre has been working in close collaboration with the Post-graduate Department of Economics of the S. P. University and so far it has helped/supported about 35 scholars to successfully complete their Ph. D. work in agricultural economics.

The principle objectives of the Centre have been as follows:

  • To  make  continuous  study  of  the  change  in  rural  economy  by      means  of surveys of  villages each year, to  be repeated after an  interval of  five  years.
  • To  conduct adhoc investigation  on  problems  of  interest  to  the  Ministry of Agriculture and  Irrigation and the State Governments under  their  jurisdiction.
  • To  undertake research on fundamental  problems  relating  to  the  agricultural  economy  of  the  country, and
  • To  give  technical  advice  to   the   Government   of   India   and  to  the  State Governments  on  such   important  issues  as,  with  mutual agreement,  may  be  referred to the Centre.

The area of coverage of the Centre is as follows:

  1. Gujarat State
  2. Rajasthan State
  3. Dadra and Nagar Haveli