Irrigation for agricultural purposes is one of the essential claims on available water resources. Those resources have not been adequately utilized in many countries for a variety of reasons. Where finance has been allocated to irrigation schemes, the schemes have tended to be large-scale, and the performance often disappointing. Alternatively, small-scale irrigation schemes, while receiving less support and encouragement, can often be more effective. For both large-scale and small-scale irrigation schemes, the responses of individual farmers and village communities are critical factors. More technologies need to be developed that are adapted to local needs, resources and aspirations within the context of current socio-economic practices. Obviously, the wider the range of technologies available, the more likely it will be that the technology most appropriate to existing conditions will be identified and used.