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The role of opinion leaders in the diffusion of new knowledge: The case of integrated pest management

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  • Feder, Gershon
  • Savastano, Sara

Abstract

The paper reviews the literature on the characteristics and impact of opinion leaders on the diffusion of new knowledge, concluding that there is no clear evidence on whether opinion leaders are more effective if they are similar in socioeconomic attributes to the other farmers rather than superior to would be followers. A multivariate analysis of the changes in integrated pest management knowledge in Indonesia among follower farmers over the period 1991-98 indicates that opinion leaders who are superior to followers, but not excessively so, are more effective in transmitting knowledge. Excessive socioeconomic distance is shown to reduce the effectiveness of diffusion. The paper then derives operational implications of the empirical results.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal World Development.

Volume (Year): 34 (2006)
Issue (Month): 7 (July)
Pages: 1287-1300

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Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:34:y:2006:i:7:p:1287-1300

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  1. Lockheed, Marlaine E & Jamison, Dean T & Lau, Lawrence J, 1987. "Farmer Education and Farm Efficiency: Reply," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(3), pages 643-44, April.
  2. William Brock & Steven N. Durlauf, 2000. "Interactions-Based Models," NBER Technical Working Papers 0258, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Gershon Feder & Rinku Murgai & Jaime B. Quizon, 2004. "The Acquisition and Diffusion of Knowledge: The Case of Pest Management Training in Farmer Field Schools, Indonesia," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(2), pages 221-243.
  4. Sunding, David & Zilberman, David, 2001. "The agricultural innovation process: Research and technology adoption in a changing agricultural sector," Handbook of Agricultural Economics, in: B. L. Gardner & G. C. Rausser (ed.), Handbook of Agricultural Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 4, pages 207-261 Elsevier.
  5. Conley, T.G. & Udry, C.R., 2000. "Learning about a New Technology: Pineapple in Ghana," Papers 817, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  6. Wiebers, U.C., 1993. "Integrated Pest Management and Pesticide Regulation in Developing Asia," Papers 211, World Bank - Technical Papers.
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Cited by:
  1. Maria Chávez Cedeño, 2012. "Innovation behaviour among smallholders: Evidence from the peach value chain in Cochabamba, Bolivia," Yearbook of Socioeconomics in Agriculture, Swiss Society for Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology, vol. 5(1), pages 223-240.
  2. Kondylis, Florence & Mueller, Valerie, 2012. "Seeing is Believing? Evidence from a Demonstration Plot Experiment in Mozambique:," MSSP working papers 1, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  3. Jeehong Kim & Wonchang Hur, 2013. "Diffusion of competing innovations in influence networks," Journal of Economic Interaction and Coordination, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 109-124, April.
  4. Linda Kleemann, 2012. "Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security in Africa: An Overview," Kiel Working Papers 1812, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  5. Elias, Carlos G. & Alwang, Jeffrey Roger, 2008. "Those with blue hair please step forward: An economic theory of group formation and application to Cajas Rurales in Honduras," 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida 6527, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  6. Shrimali, Gireesh & Slaski, Xander & Thurber, Mark C. & Zerriffi, Hisham, 2011. "Improved stoves in India: A study of sustainable business models," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(12), pages 7543-7556.
  7. Sara Savastano & Pasquale Lucio Scandizzo, 2010. "The Adoption and Diffusion of GM Crops in USA: A Real Option Approach," CEIS Research Paper 169, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 20 Jul 2010.

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