Despite the abundance of mobile phones and increased internet penetration, a survey among farmers from Odisha, India, found that the radio was still the primary source of general agricultural information.
One hundred and twenty farmers participated in the said survey. It was conducted by Visva-Bharati University in West Bengal. The farmers were of middle age, between 41 to 50 years old. Majority owned between 0.51 to 1 hectare of land and obtained middle level of education.
Aside from relying on the radio for general agricultural information, the survey found that the farmers would first listen to the radio for weather forecasts and information about government programs, markets, new technology, and mechanization. Second to the radio as the source of agricultural information was the television. As for mobile phones, the farmers reported using it for agricultural information exchange and speedy communication.
The survey also determined the farmers’ perceptions of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in delivering farm-related information. They found ICTs to be highly appropriate for the purpose, but they also considered it to be constraining. Meanwhile, only a medium rating was given to ICTs for its usefulness. Additionally, the stepwise regression analysis revealed that education, level of knowledge about devices, level of knowledge about service providers, and extent of use of ICTs for different purposes could determine the general use of ICTs. With these results, efficient and effective Information, Education, and Communication could help the farmers maximize the affordances of ICTs for agriculture.
Reference: Sethy, S., & Mukhopadhyay, S. D. (2020). Use of ICTs by Farmers: A Study in Odisha. Asian Journal of Agricultural Extension, Economics & Sociology, 74–86. https://doi.org/10.9734/AJAEES/2020/V38I530349
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