Farmers' perceptions on use of video as alternative tool for learning climate smart agriculture
Damilola Aladesuru, Christine Bosch, Regina Birner
University of Hohenheim, Inst. of Agric. Sci. in the Tropics (Hans-Ruthenberg-Institute), Germany
Agricultural extension plays a vital role for ensuring food security because agricultural extension provides knowledge, innovation and adaptation support to help farmers improve their production and manage climate change risks. However, several challenges faced by the agricultural extension systems in developing countries make it necessary to develop and use alternative, innovative approaches through which farmers can be advised about practices that can improve their resilience against climate change. This study presents the perceptions of farmers in Kenya on the use of videos as an agricultural extension tool for climate-smart agriculture, using the context of an agricultural development and research project that uses digital tools to reach women farmers with knowledge of climate-smart agricultural (CSA) practices in regions of Kenya, Uganda and India. Specific interest is in women farmers, given their high contribution to agriculture and higher vulnerability to climate change risks. The study used qualitative and quantitative methods of data collection such as focus group discussions, key informant interviews and participant observation. The collected data were analysed using deductive content analysis based on identification of themes, quantitative summary statistics and cross-tabulations. Gender was found to have significant relationship with farmers’ level of implementation of CSA practices as 76 percent of women were using some CSA practice shown in the videos at the time of study, while most male farmers had tried but stopped the practices. Women expressed the influence of featured women rather than men farmers as motivating factor leading them to use these practices. Both men and women farmers regard videos as able to present graphically not only new practices but also those that had been learned from extension officers. Further findings suggest that higher decision-making power of men in the household contributes to factors that constrained some women’s implementation of new practices. For future adaptation of videos, extension officers highlighted the need for a platform where farmers can interact with professionals like extension officers after watching the videos to clarify concerns. The study also identified some challenges to scaling of videos for agricultural extension, including technology requirements and willingness to invest in video technology.
Keywords: Agricultural extension, climate-smart agriculture, digitalisation, women farmers
Contact Address: Damilola Aladesuru, University of Bonn