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Perception and adoption of a new agricultural technology: evidence from a developing country

Khondoker Mottaleb (2018)

Adoption of new agricultural technologies is always at the center of policy interest in developing countries. In reality, despite the visible benefits of many of the new agricultural technologies, including machinery and management practices, farmers either do not adopt them or it takes a long time to begin the adoption process and scaling up. To enhance the provision of irrigation using surface water and to enhance irrigation efficiency, Bangladesh has been trying to introduce the axial-flow-pump (AFP) appropriate for surface water irrigation, which can lift up to 55% more water, conditional on the water head, than a conventional centrifugal pump. Despite the visible benefits of the AFP, the uptake of the AFP for irrigation is low in the targeted zone of Bangladesh. The present study demonstrates that the new technology must be modified to adapt to local demand and specifications. Most importantly, the price of the new technology must be competitive with the prices of the existing available substitute technologies to ensure a rapid uptake and scaling up of this new agricultural technology.


Developing Countries Technology Farmers Adoption Axial-Flow-Pump Centrifugal Pump Farmer Irrigation Low-Lift-Pump Perception Price Society PUMPING IRRIGATION FARMERS TECHNOLOGY CIENCIAS AGROPECUARIAS Y BIOTECNOLOGÍA

Increasing wheat production in Central Asia through science and international cooperation

Alexey Morgounov (2005)

The objective of the First Central Asian Wheat Conference, held on 10-13 June 2003 in Almaty, Kazakhstan, was to assess the current status of wheat research and cooperation in Central Asia, particularly in the areas of wheat breeding, genetics, plant protection, biotechnology, and agronomy. Also evaluated were the achievements of regional cooperation in promoting winter and spring wheat varieties, seed production activities, and the exchange of information among academics and specialists from Central Asia and foreign countries.

Conference proceedings

Seed production Technology Varieties Genetic resources CIENCIAS AGROPECUARIAS Y BIOTECNOLOGÍA

Exploring farmers’ perceptions of agricultural technologies: a case study from Tanzania

Harald Kaechele Marcos Lana T.S Amjath-Babu (2020)

The low agricultural productivity of key crops and food insecurity continue to be key issues in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and Tanzania. The growing population, depleting resources, and changing climate further amplify these issues. Globally, many agricultural technologies (AgTs) are available as pathways for improved agricultural productivity and food security, however, they have had relatively little success in SSA and Tanzania. This is because the uptake of AgTs is a complex process, which is highly localized, involving multiple actors, stages, and spatial and time dimensions. Smallholder farmers often experience issues of sustainability, constraints for adoption, and scaling-up throughout the uptake process of AgTs, all of which vary by region. This indicates a need for a systematic and simultaneous understanding of sustainability, constraints for adoption, and scaling-up of AgTs to better guide agricultural strategy and policy interventions in SSA and Tanzania. Moreover, in order to understand the local settings better, a consideration of the perceptions of the farmers themselves, who are the primary actors in the uptake process of AgTs, is key. Acknowledging this, the study takes on a case study approach, using the scaling-up assessment (ScalA) method and three focus group discussions with a total of 44 smallholder farmers to systematically and simultaneously assess the sustainability, constraints for adoption, and scaling-up of three AgTs (use of fertilizers, improved seeds, and small-scale irrigation) in Tanzania. The study finds that the farmers perceive all three AgTs to be sustainable for the study region. Adoption rates are perceived to be medium for use of fertilizers, high for improved seeds, and low for small-scale irrigation. The most significant constraints for adoption experienced by the farmers are lack of technical physical inputs, marketing facilities, and know-how. Scaling-up is perceived to be well fulfilled for use of fertilizers and improved seeds, but only partially fulfilled for small-scale irrigation, which is the most limited of the three AgTs. The most significant constraints for scaling-up experienced by farmers are a lack of confidence in the added value of the AgTs beyond project activities, marketing facilities, and technical physical inputs. The overall success potential is high for the use of fertilizers and improved seeds, and the average for small-scale irrigation. The farmers’ perceptions partially indicate why the bundle of AgTs is lacking in the study region and provide a basis for discussing targeted agricultural and policy interventions in Tanzania.



Developing production of a non-traditional crop in Southeast Asia: wheat in Thailand

John Connell (1998)

Urbanization has led to increased wheat imports by non-traditional, wheat producing countries. Globally, Southeast Asia has had the most rapid increase in wheat consumption. Over the past decade, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Laos, and Vietnam have attempted to assess the feasibility of initiating domestic wheat production to substitute or supplement their imports of wheat. All of these countries have areas suitable for wheat production, but no production experience, indigenous consumption, or marketing structures for wheat to provide a base for expansion. Despite the appeal of developing domestic wheat production, it must be considered essentially an experimental venture. Thus while it has been possible to gain the enthusiasm of technical people, it may not necessarily rate high on the list of government priorities. The main difficulties of developing wheat in Thailand have surprisingly not been technical issues, such as poor plant development, pests, and diseases. Instead, the unfamiliarity of the crop amongst scientists, extension workers, and farmers has been the key constraint. Functionally this has resulted in a number of problems in unexpected areas; • Identifying the areas where wheat would have a comparative advantage over other crops was not clear for some time. As a result, early extension efforts were scattered and shifted from area to area. • The recommended technology for planting wheat was too intensive and liable to misinterpretation by farmers, which led to repeated crop failures in the early years of the program. Easily adopted technologies that allowed reliable crop establishment by farmers took some time to evolve. • Local grain merchants had no knowledge of wheat and were not prepared to purchase small volumes from isolated groups of farmers. This created a lack of confidence in the crop among farmers and extension workers. These issues were recognized as being significant once the production program was in the progress and they had to be dealt with as they were encountered. The program in Thailand is notable in that it has not been structured as a pilot project with a specific pilot area for production; special fund allocations; or any program to buy back the crop from farmers. Instead, the program has been implemented within existing planning, budgeting, and operating procedures of the various government institutions involved. This has had inherent difficulties, but has also led to some innovative initiatives. In the long run, these have given the program greater strength and sustainability: • The difficulty of marketing small quantities of the crop was initially addressed by attempting to promote local use of the crop. • The Department of Agricultural Extension (DOAE) has begun to develop a market structure for wheat ased on local independent grain merchants. This should expand dynamically with a minimal input of government funds. • A wide range of institutions has been involved in the program, which gave the program access to inspiration and initiatives from different directions.This has helped maintain momentum to a greater degree than if only one institution were involved. • Finally, the problem of developing appropriate production technologies for a diverse production environment, was solved through a process of cross-fertilization between researchers on-farm trials, and farmers' informal trials. This interaction between research and extension evolved through a "participatory extension" approach that engaged farmers in the process of fine tuning the technologies to their particular situation. Most of the major crops that have been introduced to Thailand since World War II (i.e., maize, cassava, soybean, and tobacco) have been export-driven, with the private sector playing an active role in supplying farmers with inputs, production technologies, and a waiting market. Wheat, on the other hand, is competing with efficiently produced imports, with all stages of the program for developing production; technology development, seed supply, and marketing, being led by the govemment sector. This offers a unique opportunity to draw useful lessons. At this point, the technical viability of wheat production has been established. Dynamic expansion of the crop has yet to occur and will depend on the program's successful transition from being government-sponsored to the private sector. Final establishment of the crop will also depend on factors outside of the program's control, such as world prices for wheat. This Report focuses on the processes and dynamics of wheat's introduction and its expansion, the underlying constraints and imperatives, and the roles and interactions of the various cooperating institutions. The three chapters covering these topics are briefly summarized below. Chapter I. Promoting "Local Use" of Wheat as a Strategy for Developing Crop Production Extension efforts to introduce wheat to small farmers in northern Thailand began in the early 1980s. The program was immediately faced with the problem of disposing of the small output being generated by scattered groups of farmers. To escape this problem, local use of the wheat was promoted as a substitute for selling it. This was intended to allow farmers time to begin to obtain reasonable yields so that it would be economic for them to produce and permit production volume to increase sufficiently so that local grain merchants could purchase and ship the harvest to the flour mills in Bangkok. Local use was promoted on two levels: direct consumption within farm families to supplement their staple diet of rice, and sale of locally milled whole-wheat flour to food vendors. Whole-wheat flour was selected due to the simple grinding process involved and the feasibility of blending it with commercial white flour. The program developed several ways of preparing food that allowed wheat to be included in the food habits of local Thai farmers and the ethnic hilltribe people. These dishes were readily accepted on the basis of taste, but the long preparation and/or cooking time prohibited their ready adoption into the farm family diet. However, there are some indications that ethnic hilltribe people could fit the more basic preparations into their diets and daily routines. The was a consistent interest among farmers' housewives to use wheat for various types of snacks. A number of small bakeries started using methods of milling and baking, based on locally available technologies and materials. In the end, the main obstacle to widespread replication of such enterprises was not poor market acceptance or the lack of appropriate technologies, but the lack of middlemen who would maintain a stock of wheat in the village. Without material readily available, there was little opportunity for potential entrepreneurs to begin trial operations. Overall, the local use effort was not successful in its main objective of generating home consumption in the place of selling the crop. However, there were indications that local use of wheat could develop in certain situations once production became more commonplace. While unsuccessful in this primary goal, the effort di help to popularize the new crop among women farmers. The interest and cooperation that the program engendered was significant. Therefore, when trying to stimulate interest in a new crop, the local use concept should not be rejected out of hand. Chapter II. Developing Production: Initiatives and Constraints The current program to establish wheat production is the latest attempt to do so over the past 50 years. The Department of Agricultural Extension (DOAE) initiated the program with a series of multilocation trials, beginning in the 1983/84 cool season. A wdespread wheat promotion campaign began four years later (1987/88 cool season). As a key element of the campaign, the DOAE has provided free seed and fertilizer. Where substantial production areas developed, mobile threshers were made available free of charge. Production has been promoted in ,both rainfed and irrigated environments. A rough estimate of the area in these two production domains is 110,000 and 55,000 ha, respectively. Extension efforts have alternately targeted rainfed and irrigated environments as the expectation of success in the two domains changed. By 1990/91 season, "production centers" of wheat had been established in six of Thailand's eight provinces. The production area in 1995/96 had reached a modest 742 ha and 720 ha for rainfed and irrigated areas, respectively, with a total of about 1500 ha. Early extension efforts were plagued by consistent crop failure due to farmers' unfamiliarity with the crop. In irrigated areas, farmers consistently over-irrigated, over-seeded, or left seed uncovered. Rainfed areas had similar problems of over-seeding and poor seed-cover. In rainfed production the seeding date has to coincide with the last storms of the wet season. As the pattern of these late storms changes from year to year, this has necessarily prolonged the learning curve for rainfed farmers. Thus the yields for rainfed production have been slower to rise. Such a set of management errors is typical for any extension program introducing a new crop. But in the case of wheat, the technology extended to farmers played a major role in their onsistent crop failures. It was not until more appropriate technologies were developed that extension began to achieved any success he severity of these management errors has been reduced (but not eliminated) so that the average yields for the 1996 harvest were approximately 1 t/ha and 0.64 t/ha for irrigated and rainfed areas, respectively. This is still below the calculated "break-even" point of 1.2 and 0.82 t/ha for irrigated and rainfed areas, respectively. However, farmers with a number of years experience growing the crop are achieving double these yields. Marketing has been a major issue for wheat. The DOAE made a concerted effort to develop a market structure based on independent local grain merchants. They acted at two levels. In Bangkok, guaranteed prices of 7.4 Bt/kg (0.30 US$/kg) at the mill door and procedures for handling the crop were established with mill representatives. At the local level, extension workers selected local grain merchants and introduced them to farmers. The two groups held yearly marketing meetings before crop harvest. The system has some rough spots, but the network of local grain merchants purchasing the crop is increasing each season. This structure should expand dynamically as production expands without continued coordination by government institutions. This attempt to engage the private sector, should it prove effective, will have been achieved with minimal government expenditure. The crop is at its "watershed" in Thailand. There are expanding centers of production in both rainfed and irrigated areas, appropriate technologies are available, and marketing links with flour mills in Bangkok have been established. However, dynamic expansion is yet to occur. Government support of free seed has reached the limit of its usefulness now and is beginning to inhibit dynamic expansion. Average yields are still depressed by the typical management errors noted in the early years of extension, and by market links, which are not yet responsive. All of these problems can be managed. However, the overall constraint is the lack of any real drive from the mills as the end users. The government sector has succeeded in establishing the basis for wheat production in northern Thailand. Its job is more or less done. At some point the private sector will need to become a driving force. When the program began in early 1980s, wheat prices were low, but they have risen substantially since, so that domestic wheat should now be cheaper than imported wheat. Chapter III. Developing Appropriate Technologies in a Diverse Production Environment The initial research effort was confined to experiment stations where scientists themselves had to become familiar with the crop's characteristics. The original recommended technology was time-and labor-intensive, and was open to misinterpretation by traditional rice farmers. It is unlikely that any extension program based on this technology would have been successful. Most of the more appropriate technologies that are now being adopted were identified through fairly informal on-farm trials. The research program has changed considerably over the last 12 years. Research is now strictly oriented towards production problems and has a strong on-farm component. In addition, scientists are beginning to examine the focus ofthe research program in the context of the diversity of the production environments. Since the beginning of widespread promotion of the crop to farmers in the 1987/88 season, there have been dramatic shifts in the preferred technology used. Perhaps as few as 10% of the farmers are still using the originally recommended technology. Broadcasting instead of row seeding, minimum tillage instead of soil preparation, and the use of mulch to alter the micro-climate of the crop are some of the changes that promise to increase yields and/or reduce inputs. There have been several stages in the evolution of appropriate production technologies, and the specific technology preferred at a particular site varies according to local conditions. Farmers themselves have played an active role in adapting and innovating appropriate technologies. This is perhaps to be expected with a new crop. An extension approach in which farmers are presented with a number of alternative technologies appears to be effective in engaging them to evaluate and adapt the technologies. Because there is a definite contributing role for the farmers with this extension approach, it is called "participatory." This participatory approach could offer a way around the impasse that farming systems research (FSR) faces; in diverse production environments where any technology developed will be necessarily site specific, the need for repeated trials for each environment places a load on institutionalized FSR that it will never be able to meet. Participatory extension prompts the farmers to fine-tune the technologies themselves and should allow FSR to focus on issues that are beyond farmers' resources to deal with. Tviability of institutional adoption of participatory extension was investigated through an action research program funded by Canada's International Development Research Center (IORC) within the existing Thai Wheat Program.



Livelihoods, poverty and targeting in the Indo-Gangetic Plains : a spatial mapping approach

Jon Hellin (2007)

This study develops a spatial mapping methodology as a tool to guide priority-setting and targeting of poverty-alleviation activities. It applies this tool to the Indo-Gangetic Plains of South Asia, the target domain of the Rice-Wheat Consortium (RWC). It draws on secondary data for 18 quantitative, spatially-explicit variables at the district level, which serve as indicators of poverty levels


CIENCIAS AGROPECUARIAS Y BIOTECNOLOGÍA Methods Production economics Agricultural research Food policies Poverty Technology Food production



The processes of appropriation of technology have generated changes in the role that the young people had as audiences before the traditional media: they moved from audiences subject to the logics of production and diffusion established by companies and media institutions, to interactive Internet users; That is to say, they are prosumidores (acronym of producer and consumer).

Los procesos de apropiación de la tecnología han generado cambios en el papel que los jóvenes tenían como audiencias ante los medios de comunicación tradicionales: transitaron de públicos sujetos a las lógicas de producción y difusión establecidas por empresas e instituciones mediáticas, a usuarios interactivos de internet; es decir, son prosumidores (acrónimo de productor y consumidor).


Prosumidores Prosumers agentes sociales Social partners tecnología technology CIENCIAS SOCIALES

Downside Risk Reducing Impacts of Crop Diversification in Maize Yield Enhancing Investments

Moti Jaleta Paswel Marenya (2018)

Presented at the 30th International Conference of Agricultural Economists (ICAE), Vancouver, Canada, held on July 29, 2018.

Conference object

Maize yields Technology Agricultural Practices Ethiopia CIENCIAS AGROPECUARIAS Y BIOTECNOLOGÍA

Determinantes tecnológicos de las decisiones de inversión: un análisis de la industria manufacturera mexicana

Technological determinants and investment decisions: a Mexican manufacturing industry analysis


En este trabajo se analiza la influencia de determinantes tecnológicos en las decisiones de inversión de las empresas manufactureras mexicanas. Se utilizan estimaciones de eficiencia obtenidas a partir del Análisis Envolvente de Datos (DEA, por sus siglas en inglés), así como indicadores tecnológicos para las regresiones a través de Mínimos Cuadrados Ordinarios (MCO). El análisis se realiza partiendo de datos de corte transversal. La evidencia empírica sugiere que la eficiencia técnica a partir de los factores productivos capital y trabajo puede incentivar los niveles de inversión.

The influence of technological determinants on the investment decisions of Mexican manufacturing firms is discussed in this work. Efficiency estimates obtained from the Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) and technology indicators for the regressions through Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) are used to develop the study. The analysis is based on cross-sectional data. Empirical evidence suggests that the technological efficiency that arises from productive factors (capital and labor) may encourage investment.


CIENCIAS SOCIALES Inversión Tecnología Manufacturas Investment Technology Manufacture