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Poverty status and the impact of social networks on smallholder technology adoption in rural Ethiopia

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  • Liverpool, Saweda
  • Winter-Nelson, Alex

Abstract

Despite recent traces of economic growth, Ethiopia remains one of the poorest countries in the world. Though about 80% of its population is engaged in agriculture, agricultural productivity remains low and extremely vulnerable to climatic conditions. The adoption and use of modern technologies is generally accepted as a potential vehicle out of poverty for many but adoption rates in the country remain low with the nature of the adoption process largely unstudied (Spielman et al, 2007). This paper studies the impact of social networks in the technology adoption process in rural Ethiopia. In particular it tests for the presence of social learning effects. In addition to geographic networks, it considers the role played by other networks with more purposeful interactions such as a household’s friends. The study explores the differential impacts of social networks by network type, technology and the asset poverty status of households.

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Paper provided by Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in its series 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin with number 49357.

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Date of creation: Apr 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea09:49357

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Keywords: social learning; persistent poverty; technology adoption; Ethiopia; Food Security and Poverty; International Development; Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies; O31; O33; Q12; Q13;

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  1. William Brock & Steven N. Durlauf, 2000. "Interactions-Based Models," NBER Technical Working Papers 0258, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Hausman, Jerry A. & Taylor, William E., 1981. "Panel data and unobservable individual effects," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 155-155, May.
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  7. Besley, Timothy & Case, Anne, 1993. "Modeling Technology Adoption in Developing Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(2), pages 396-402, May.
  8. Timothy Besley & Anne Case, 1994. "Diffusion as a Learning Process: Evidence from HYV Cotton," Working Papers 228, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Research Program in Development Studies..
  9. Liverpool, Lenis Saweda O. & Winter-Nelson, Alex, 2010. "Poverty Status and the Impact of Formal Credit on Technology Use and Wellbeing among Ethiopian Smallholders," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 541-554, April.
  10. Moser, Christine M. & Barrett, Christopher B., 2003. "The Complex Dynamics Of Smallholder Technology Adoption: The Case Of Sri In Madagascar," Working Papers 14735, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
  11. Prescott, Edward C, 1972. "The Multi-Period Control Problem Under Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 40(6), pages 1043-58, November.
  12. Michelle Adato & Michael Carter & Julian May, 2006. "Exploring poverty traps and social exclusion in South Africa using qualitative and quantitative data," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(2), pages 226-247.
  13. Timothy Conley & Udry Christopher, 2001. "Social Learning Through Networks: The Adoption of New Agricultural Technologies in Ghana," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 83(3), pages 668-673.
  14. Marcel Fafchamps & Steven N. Durlauf, 2004. "Social Capital," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2004-14, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    • Durlauf, Steven N. & Fafchamps, Marcel, 2005. "Social Capital," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 26, pages 1639-1699 Elsevier.
  15. Foster, Andrew D & Rosenzweig, Mark R, 1995. "Learning by Doing and Learning from Others: Human Capital and Technical Change in Agriculture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(6), pages 1176-1209, December.
  16. Munshi, Kaivan, 2004. "Social learning in a heterogeneous population: technology diffusion in the Indian Green Revolution," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 185-213, February.
  17. Liverpool, Saweda & Winter-Nelson, Alex, 2009. "Poverty status and the impact of social networks on smallholder technology adoption in rural Ethiopia," 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 49357, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  18. Manski, Charles F, 1993. "Identification of Endogenous Social Effects: The Reflection Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(3), pages 531-42, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Liverpool, Saweda & Winter-Nelson, Alex, 2009. "Poverty status and the impact of social networks on smallholder technology adoption in rural Ethiopia," 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 49357, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  2. Liverpool-Tasie, Lenis Saweda & Kuku, Oluyemisi & Ajibola, Akeem, 2011. "Review of literature on agricultural productivity, social capital and food security in Nigeria:," NSSP working papers 21, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).

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