Grp3 research on rural advisory servicesPresentation Transcript
Research on rural advisory services: recent findings from our work on farmer to farmer dissemination and the way forward for ICRAF Steven Franzel
Punchline: Farmer to farmer dissemination is largely ignored in the literature, yet our findings, in Kenya at least, are that
it is very important in spreading innovation, and
Volunteer farmer trainers, supported by outside agencies, can effectively spread the use of new practices
Why research on rural advisory services
Some recent findings
Farmer to farmer dissemination (2 studies)
Analytical framework for assessing costs and benefits of a volunteer farmer trainer program
Our volunteer farmer trainer program in EADD: assessing effectiveness
GRP3’s new theme: Assessing innovative extension approaches for fostering entrepreneur ship and innovation
The way forward (discussion)
Why should ICRAF be interested in research on rural advisory services
Rural advisory services a key impact pathway linking our research to improving livelihoods
AF practices are knowledge intensive; rural advisory services for promoting them are more important than for other practices (eg maize varieties)
knowledge intensive because:
New practices involved (eg nurseries, pruning)
Training needs to take place over time
Many practices are complex, in that they involve intercropping or more than one component (eg, crops and livestock)
Two other reasons…
Relative to other CG centers, we have a comparative advantage in research on rural advisory services
High demand for evidence based recommendations on rural advisory services but few CG centers or research institutes interested in this subject
Farmer to farmer dissemination: Why so critical?
Decline of national extension services
Little research available on how farmers spread information and materials
Aim: understand farmer to farmer dissemination so we can best understand how to promote it
1. Farmer-to-farmer dissemination of fodder shrubs in central Kenya (Franzel et al., 2006)
Study objective: find out degree to which farmer adopters disseminate fodder shrubs
Characterize the F-F process:
Who disseminates to whom
What factors are associated with F-F dissemination?
Methods: Surveys of
94 adopters 3 years after planting, and
55 “recipients” who received planting material from adopters
Farmer to farmer dissemination is widespread and effective
In Kenya, 3 years after planting, 53% of farmers who adopted gave
seed, seedlings, or wildings to other farmers
To how many farmers? Disseminators give out seedlings, on
average, to 6.3 other farmers.
Who are the recipients?
46% from village, 54% from outside
50% friends, 31% relatives, 19% other
Do recipients plant?
90% of “recipients” successful in planting fodder shrubs.
But 42% had fewer than 20 shrubs.
Factors associated with the giving out of seeds and seedlings (NS= not significant, **=p<0.05 *=p<0.1) Variables Model 1 Logistic regression: Model 2: Truncated linear regression: Dependent variable Disseminate: yes or no No. of farmers given seed/seedlings Age NS ** Education NS NS Wealth NS NS Gender NS NS Have nursery NS ** No. fodder shrubs ** NS No. extension visits * NS Knowledge NS ** but negative! No. cases 94 52 Adjusted r2 0.20 0.17
Dissemination of fodder shrubs highly concentrated
5% of farmers accounted for 66% of dissemination
The 8 “master disseminators (those disseminating to 12 or more farmers) were a varied group
5 men, 3 women
4 were group officials, 3 were ordinary members
Education level, farm size similar to other adopters
A few farmers responsible for most of the dissemination! Can a project identify these people and support them in their volunteer dissemination activities?
Disseminators appear to be difficult to characterize except that they are motivated to disseminate (a personality characteristic?)
Few barriers to becoming a disseminator: wealth, gender, education do not present barriers
2. Characteristics of experts, innovators and disseminators of fodder shrubs, central Kenya (Tutui et al. 2007)
Background: Most extension services choose “master farmers” on the basis of their expertise
Assess degree to which experts are also good disseminators and innovators
Determine motivation for disseminating
Methods: Develop indices for the above and score 111 adopters across the criteria
Criteria for indices Expert Innovator Disseminator Knowledge of fodder shrub practices No. of experiments conducted/new practices tested No. of farmers given seeds/seedlings No. of fodder shrubs No. of years experimenting No. of farmers given information Have nursery Creativity of innovation No. of dissemination methods used No. years practicing Source of innovation
19 (40%) of the 48 experts are not good disseminators
An extension program recruiting farmer experts may not be very effective in dissemination
Persons who were neither experts, innovators, nor disseminators 48
Motivation for disseminating
Help others (90%)
Social status (33%)
Financial benefits (13%)
If I don’t help them, people will come to me for food and money”
3. Cost-benefit analysis of a volunteer farmer trainer program in Kenya: Can trainers cover their extension costs by selling inputs and services? (Franzel et al., 2009)
In a project with Farm Africa, we chose volunteer farmer trainers to help farmers start or improve their dairy goat enterprises
Trainers chosen not because they were experts but because they were good networkers/ communicators:
Develop analytical framework of a farmer trainer program for assessing costs and benefits
Assess costs and benefits
Determine extent to which farmer trainers can cover costs of their extension activities
Analytical framework: Benefits and costs of a Farmer Trainer Programme from the perspective of different stakeholders * denotes the benefits and costs that were measured in monetary terms in this study. ** denotes the non-monetary aspects assessed in the study Stakeholders Item 1. Project 2. Farmer Trainers 3. Trainees Bene-fits 1. Benefits to farmers acquiring dairy goats or improving management 1. Empowerment, knowledge, which helps them increase economic benefits from their own enterprises. 1. Increased benefits from dairy goat enterprise in terms of increased herd size and value, goat sales, milk and manure . 2. Benefits to economy of increased income and employment 2. Higher social status 2. Empowerment, knowledge that farmers use in improving other enterprises. 3. Lessons learned, knowledge generated international public goods 3. Economic benefits from extension activities (e.g., Sale of seed) 3. Enhanced social capital provides benefits to group members in other enterprises 4. Enhanced food and nutritional security and health of beneficiaries 4. Economic benefits to members of their groups(from sale of group-owned seed) 5. New contacts with other institutions
Item 1. Project 2. Farmer Trainers 3. Trainees Costs 1. Training Farmer Trainers 1. Time spent being trained, including travel 1. Costs associated with having a goat or improving goat management 2. Monitoring Farmer Trainers 2. Time spent conducting training, including travel 3. Managing project 3. Time spent linking with other projects/institutions
High returns to all three stakeholders (project, trainers, trainees)
Volunteer farmer trainers trained 16 (s.d. 9.1) farmers/month. Range was 3-33
High incentives for entrepreneurs to become farmer trainers. Incentives highest for animal health workers as they need only 2 customers/month to cover their extension costs. Buck keepers need 7 and seed vendors need 20.
Social benefits are critical incentives for farmer trainers
4. Our Farmer trainer program in BMGF-funded East Africa Dairy Development Program: Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda
ICRAF leads the feeding systems component of the project
We employ 7 “dissemination facilitators” across Kenya, Rwanda, and Uganda
We have 400 volunteer farmer trainers (40% women) across project sites
Over 40% are women
Farmer trainers host demo plots of high value feeds
Assessments of effectiveness and impact underway
Assessing effectiveness of farmer trainer program Lukuyu, Kiptot, Place, Franzel
Current (tentative) objectives of study of EADD farmer trainers
1. the flow of knowledge, information and materials (e.g., seed) from farmer trainers to group and community members and uptake of practices
2. the extent to which women and other disadvantaged groups benefit,
3. Whether farmer trainers can cover their extension costs
4. the degree to which the approach builds capacities of communities to access information, innovate and solve problems.
5. the sustainability of the approach, that is, how feasible it is for communities and local institutions to manage the approach once donors depart
On the sustainability issue: Ben Lukuyu recently completed an assessment of two farmer trainer programs in western Kenya and found that several years after the projects ended, the trainers were still active disseminators
GRP3 and rural advisory services GRP3 has 4 themes: value chain and sub-sector analysis, quality assurance standards, enterprise development and innovative extension approaches
How can innovative extension approaches foster entrepreneurship and innovation?
i. What are key factors affecting the impact and sustainability of innovative extension approaches such as volunteer farmer extension programs and rural resource centers.
ii.. How does the impact of innovative extension approaches vary by commodity, by land use system, by social setting and by region?
Our way forward
Key partners we are in contact with:
Global Forum on Rural Advisory Services
World Bank ARD
Donors: Gates, USAID
MTT Finland, Innovative extension approaches
SCAN (UNCTAD-IISD) Training needs assessment
Innovative extension approaches or scaling up approaches
Since all GRPs are interested in these issues, how do we best coordinate our efforts?
Action research: When do we implement an extension approach and when do we instead involve others (NGOs) to do that?