Agriculture is the mainstay of livelihood and 78% people depend upon agriculture. The principal occupations of the people are rainfed agriculture, animal husbandry and casual labour work. During Kharif period most part of the work mass engaged themselves for about 4 months. Krishi Vigyan Kendra has been set up by ICAR, New Delhi at Gram Nirman Mandal, Sarvodaya Ashram, Sokhodeora, District Nawada, for rapid transfer of technology to the farmers’ fields. The operational area of this Krishi Vigyan Kendra is Nawada.
Nawada has no functional large industries and only some 18 small and medium enterprises (SME) are located in the city in addition to a few stone chips factories and rice mills, however, potential of industrial development may be explored. Kadirganj, located 6 km from Nawada, has a very old and famous silk small scale industry where many artisans carry out the activities of cleaning and weaving of silk. It has commercial and trading linkages with Bhagalpur, a city famous for its silk business including export of silk from India. Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd has identified Rajauli in Nawada district of Bihar as the possible site for creating additional 2,000-mW nuclear capacity in the state. There are great possibilities for agro-industries in this district. They include Rice Mill, Sugar industry, oilseed industry, Corn Flakes industry and Agriculture machinery industry.
Nawada district has its own glory in the field of tourism and has potential to be developed as a tourist center. There are several places of interest located in the vicinity of the town. These include Kakolat Waterfall (24km from town), Sekho Devra Ashram (Sarvodaya Ashram was established here in Kowakole block by Jaiprakash Narayan and inaugurated by Dr. Rajendra Prasad), Hariya Sun Temple (located in Hariya village under Nardiganj block), Baba Majaar and Hanuman Temple (located on NH 31, a shrine of Hazrat Saiyyad Shah Jalaluddin Bukhari and a Hanuman temple), Jarra Baba (located in Sirdalla), Hanuman Mandir (located in Kendua village) and Maa Bageshwari Mandir (located in Jamuawa, in 3 km of Jamui road of Nawada in side of Sakri River).