For developing countries, sustainable farming is an important practice to increase field productivity and economic growth. Using a Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) framework, the study analyzed the decision-making processes of farmers in Northeastern Thailand regarding adoption intention.
Dipterocarpus alatus (D. alatus) is a large tree species found only in the Southeast Asian mainland commonly used for timber and resin. Its other agricultural uses and products include engine oils, medicines, cosmetics, and mushroom shade. To improve economic efficiency, a new agroforestry technology that can enhance farming precision and conservation is being researched before its implementation.
The adoption intention can be influenced by factors such as initial costs, existing bodies of knowledge, ease of use, and household attributes. The researchers collected data from smallholder farmers in the northern Khon Kaen province. On average, the farmer representatives attended two agricultural extension trainings by the government in 2020.
The findings include a significant relationship between farmers’ attitude and intention on D. alatus new technologies. This positive attitude was found to be based on experience and environmental benefits. Another study outcome was that high cost wasn’t a hindrance for adoption because the government provides subsidies.
It’s important to know the socio-psychological factors of the rural stakeholders in creating a long-term policy for farmers’ participation. And encouraging farmers to conserve D.alatus as an alternative farm-income should be considered by policymakers. Also, before implementing new technologies, local financial and development support are critical aspects. Overall, the 2021 study highlights the positive attitudes of Thai farmers in adopting technologies for sustainability and agroforestry, as well as biodiversity protection.
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Saengavut, V. & Jirasatthumb, N. (2022). Smallholder decision-making process in technology adoption intention: implications for Dipterocarpus alatus in Northeastern Thailand. Heliyon, 7(4). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2021.e06633
Photo source: AFA
Article contributed by Charlene Esteban, ComDev Asia intern