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'Appropriating' technology? Tractor owners, brokers, artisans and farmers in rural Bangladesh


  • David J. Lewis

    (Lecturer in the Centre for Voluntary Organisation, Department of Social Policy and Administration, London School of Economics and Political Science)


Although tractors have long been regarded by policy makers in Bangladesh as being technologically 'inappropriate' to local conditions, they have nevertheless been in use in Comilla district for several decades. The failure of cooperative institutional arrangements for farm mechanization in the 1960s has stimulated local rural entrepreneurs to establish their own custom ploughing arrangements. This is a response to a continuing draught power shortage and the needs of farmers to achieve a swift turnaround time between harvesting rain-fed paddy and planting the increasingly profitable potato crop. This type of arrangement forms part of wider entrepreneurial service delivery systems which are becoming increasingly important in rural Bangladesh, where small-scale agriculture interacts with 'lumpy' technological inputs.

Suggested Citation

  • David J. Lewis, 1996. "'Appropriating' technology? Tractor owners, brokers, artisans and farmers in rural Bangladesh," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(1), pages 21-38.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jintdv:v:8:y:1996:i:1:p:21-38
    DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1099-1328(199601)8:1<21::AID-JID247>3.0.CO;2-#

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jabbar, Mohammad A., 1985. "Animal power situation in Bangladesh," Research Report/Working Paper 183887, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh, Department of Agricultural Economics.
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