Article

Use of communication media in changing rice farmers’ pest management in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam

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Abstract

Many rice farmers decide to spray insecticides based on their perception of potential damage and losses caused by pest species. Farmers generally overestimate the seriousness of the rice leaf folder from visible damage and apply insecticides early, and therefore, changing perceptions may help reduce the perceived benefits of unnecessary spraying. Farmers in Long An province, Vietnam, were motivated to ‘test’ a heuristic or rule of thumb, ‘insecticide spraying for leaf folder control in the first 40 days after sowing is not needed’, by the distribution of carefully designed communication media materials. The media reached 97% of the farmers in the study sites. Leaflets, radio drama and posters had the most effective reach. Thirty-one months after the media introduction, the number of insecticide sprays dropped significantly from 3.35 sprays per farmer per season to 1.56. The proportion of farmers spraying at early and late tillering and booting stages was reduced from 59%, 84% and 85% to 0.2%, 19% and 30%, respectively. Those who did not use any insecticides increased from 1% to 32%. Correspondingly, farmers' perceptions of leaf folder damage as indicated in a belief index, decreased significantly from 11.25 to 7.62. The proportion of farmers who believed that leaf folders could cause losses was reduced from 70% to 25%, as did those who believed that early season spraying was required, from 77% to 23%, respectively. Farmers' insecticide spray frequencies and the belief index were significantly correlated and were not significantly different between farmers who had attended farmer field school training and those who had not. The cost (insecticide and labour) saving was the most important incentive for farmers to stop early season spraying as cited by 89% of the farmers. A survey of 12 other districts in Long An showed that 82% of the province's 210000 households were reached. About 20% had not applied any insecticides, 77% had stopped early season spraying and the average number of insecticide sprays was 1.6 (compared with 1.55 in study sites). The approach was readily adopted by extension in 15 provinces that launched their own programmes, extending to the whole Mekong Delta of 2 million farmer households.

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... However, research showed that leaf-feeding insects that often infest the rice crop in the vegetative stages rarely cause yield loss (see Way and Heong, 1994 for review). Insecticide sprays in the vegetative crop stages can instead cause secondary pest problems, such as the brown planthopper (Nilaparvata lugens Stal.) (see Heong and Schoenly, 1998 for review). Farmers' pest management decisions are in#uenced more by perceptions (Norton, 1982; Mumford * Corresponding author. ...
... Farmers, who participated in the simple experiment to evaluate the con#ict information, subsequently changed their attitudes. In 1994 a media campaign was implemented in the Mekong Delta to motivate farmers to test whether the heuristic: &Insecticide spraying in the "rst 40 days after sowing for leaf folder control is not needed' (Details in Heong et al., 1998). The campaign used leaflets , posters and a radio drama to challenge the general belief that leaf folders were important pests and had to be sprayed early in the crop season. ...
... The same "ve belief attributes (see Table 4) were used in both surveys. Data collection procedures in the September 1997 survey were similar to that described in Heong et al. (1998), except samples were strati"ed by province. The variables and questions used in survey were determined by conducting a conversational analysis in an exploratory "eld research by the authors. ...
Article
Between 1992 and 1997, two insecticide reduction interventions were introduced to farmers in the Mekong Delta, the media campaign to motivate farmers to experiment whether early season spraying for leaf folders was necessary and the farmer field schools (FFS). The media campaign reached about 92% of the 2.3 million farmer households in the Mekong while the FFS trained about 108,000 farmers or 4.3%. Farmers’ insecticide use, early season sprayings and pest management beliefs reduced markedly over the 5-year period. Spray frequencies changed from 3.4 to 1.0 sprays per season, a reduction of 70%. Less farmers sprayed in the seedling, tillering and booting stages changing from 18, 65 and 45%, respectively to 1, 12 and 22%, respectively. Changes in farmers’ beliefs were significant, with the belief index reducing from 11 to 6.7. There were significant differences between farmers reached by media and trained by FFS, farmers reached only by the media, and those not reached by either intervention. Spray frequencies were 0.5, 1.2 and 2.1, respectively and similar differences in early season spraying and beliefs were observed. It is evident that the two interventions, media and FFS, played complementary roles in significantly changing farmers’ beliefs and insecticide use in the Mekong Delta.
... In all cases, knowledge about the issues discussed in the program were initially high and increased over time in both the control group and the treatment group (possibly due to spillover effects and/or other interventions). Despite these null findings, most evidence suggests entertainment-education programs successfully transfer knowledge and information to audiences, sometimes even more effectively than purely educational interventions (Heong et al. 1998). ...
... Ouane (1982) reports that pro-development entertainment-education films in Mali inspired hundreds of villages to establish literacy centers and acquire advanced farming equipment in imitation of the villages presented in the films. Studies by Heong et al. (1998; and Huan et al. (2008) report on a series of entertainment-education programs aimed at reducing the use of pesticides, insecticides, and fertilizers in Vietnam. 10 The programs specifically link reduced use of chemicals to better farming outcomes and decreased costs to farmers. These studies show that the programs decreased farmers' perceptions about the need for such inputs, farmers' self-reported use of those inputs, and retailers' sales of those inputs. ...
... Farmers noted that they changed their farming practices in order to decrease the costs of inputs and labor (Heong et al. 1998). Based on survey data, there was still evidence of these effects months or even years after the broadcast media intervention Heong et al. 1998). ...
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As new information technologies facilitate the production and dissemination of broadcast media, entertainment-education interventions are increasingly used in attempts to influence audiences on issues such as political participation, support for democracy, violence against women, and tolerance of ethnic, religious, and sexual minorities. What factors make these programs effective in enacting behavior change in their audiences? Insights from social learning theory, which motivate entertainment-education media, highlight that individuals (i) learn about behaviors by observing examples of behavior in their environment and (ii) adopt the behaviors that they believe will help them achieve their goals. We review the existing entertainment-education literature in light of this foundational theory and find that exposure to broadcast media can change behavior by linking desired behaviors to pre-existing goals. Conversely and as expected, the literature does not provide much evidence that media leads to behavior change by persuading individuals to adopt new goals. We conclude the review with a discussion of the prospects for successful broadcast media interventions in two domains: public health, a realm where most interventions focus on linking behavior with existing goals, and countering violent extremism (CVE), where most interventions focus on changing goals.
... Consequently, much of the early season application of insecticides was based on exaggerated estimation of plant damage due to leaffolder and likely to be uneconomical [150]. These observations led to the formulation of a simple rule of thumb: 'insecticide spraying for leaf folder control in the first 40 days after sowing is not needed' [152]. This simple message, supported by public media and an entertainment education campaign, has been shown to successfully change farmers' practice in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam [153,154]. ...
... A simple rule of thumb, "insecticide spraying for leaf folder control in the first 40 days after sowing is not needed (No early spray -NES)", was formulated and the multimedia materials to communicate this message were designed through a participatory workshop that involved researchers, extension and agricultural communication specialists. The resulting mass media campaign involved distribution of leaflets, posters, roadside billboards and radio drama broadcasted through local stations and played at coffee shops [152]. After 31 months of the MMC-NES in Long Anh province, Vietnam, the proportion of farmers who believed that early season spraying was required dropped from 77% to 23%. ...
... After 31 months of the MMC-NES in Long Anh province, Vietnam, the proportion of farmers who believed that early season spraying was required dropped from 77% to 23%. Reported spray frequency was also significantly reduced from 3.35 sprays per season to 1.56 sprays per season [152]. ...
Article
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Rice is a staple food and the foundation of national stability and economic growth in many developing countries. Rice pests are major biotic constraints limiting rice production globally. This review discusses the biology, ecology, global distribution and plant damage and yield losses caused by insect pests, plant diseases, nematodes, rats and weeds. The interactions among insects, weeds and diseases are discussed. A proposed conceptual framework for arthropod pest management in organic crop production is explained. In this framework, arthropod pest management strategies are classified into four ‘phases’. The framework prioritizes pest management options that will prevent damaging levels of pests (phase 1 and 2) and minimize the need for curative actions (phases 3 and 4). We adopt and modify this conceptual framework to structure a discussion on various rice pest management options in rice ecosystems. A detailed package of practices for managing rice pests is given. The relative efficiencies of the Farmers Field Schools and mass media campaigns in transferring IPM technology to rice farmers are discussed.
... Consequently, much of the early season application of insecticides was based on exaggerated estimation of plant damage due to leaffolder and likely to be uneconomical [150]. These observations led to the formulation of a simple rule of thumb: 'insecticide spraying for leaf folder control in the first 40 days after sowing or transplanting in the field is not needed' [152]. This simple message, supported by public media and an entertainment education campaign, has been shown to successfully change farmers' practice in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam [153,154]. ...
... A simple rule of thumb, 'insecticide spraying for leaf folder control in the first 40 days after sowing or transplanting in the field is not needed (No early spray -NES)', was formulated and the multimedia materials to communicate this message were designed through a participatory workshop that involved researchers, extension and agricultural communication specialists. The resulting MMC involved distribution of leaflets, posters, roadside billboards and radio dramas broadcast through local stations and played at coffee shops [152]. After 31 months of the MMC-NES in Long Anh province, Vietnam, the proportion of farmers who believed that early season spraying was required dropped from 77 to 23%. ...
... After 31 months of the MMC-NES in Long Anh province, Vietnam, the proportion of farmers who believed that early season spraying was required dropped from 77 to 23%. Reported spray frequency was also significantly reduced from 3.35 sprays per season to 1.56 sprays per season [152]. ...
Article
Full-text available
Integrated management of tropical rice pests
... A set of studies from the 1950s and 1960s also established that ''farm radio forums" succeeded in transferring agricultural knowledge to farmers in contexts as diverse as Ghana, India, Benin, and Thailand (Abell, 1968;Anyanwu, 1978;Jain, 1969;Kivlin, 1968;Mathur & Neurath, 1959;Purnasiri & Griffin, 1976). More recent interventions taught farmers in Vietnam to differentiate damaging from non-damaging insects and how to best use fertilizer (Heong, Escalada, Huan, & Mai, 1998;Heong et al., 2008;Huan et al., 2008). Educational media programs have also been shown to successfully increase knowledge of mathematics and grammar (Galda, 1984;Ginsburg & Arias-Goding, 1984), health and nutrition (Abdulla, 2003;Banerjee, Barnhardt, & Duflo, 2015;Cooke & Romweber, 1977), civics (Byram, Kaute, & Matenge, 1980), and other topics (see Nwaerondu & Thompson, 1987 for a full review). ...
... In all cases, knowledge about the issues at hand was initially high and increased in both the control group and the treatment group (possibly due to spillover effects or other interventions). Despite these particular null findings, most evidence suggests edutainment successfully transfers information to audiences, sometimes even more effectively than purely educational interventions (Heong et al., 1998). ...
... Ouane (1982) reports that edutainment films in Mali inspired hundreds of villages to establish literacy centers and acquire advanced farming equipment. Studies by Heong et al. (1998, Heong, Escalada, Chien, and Cuong (2014) and Huan et al. (2008) find that programs aimed at reducing the use of pesticides, insecticides, and fertilizers in Vietnam 10 led to reduced use of chemicals by linking reductions to better farming outcomes. Based on survey data, there was still evidence of these effects months or even years after the broadcast media intervention (Heong et al., 1998;Huan et al., 2008). ...
Article
As new information technologies facilitate the production and dissemination of broadcast media, entertainment-education interventions are increasingly used in attempts to influence audiences on issues such as political participation, support for democracy, violence against women, and tolerance of ethnic, religious, and sexual minorities. What factors make these programs effective in catalyzing behavior change in their audiences? Insights from social learning theory and other theories that motivate entertainment-education media highlight that individuals (i) learn about behaviors by observing examples of behavior in their environment and (ii) adopt behaviors that they believe will help them achieve their goals. We review existing empirical literature on entertainment-education in light of this foundational theory and find that exposure to broadcast media can change behavior by linking desired behaviors to pre-existing goals. Conversely and as expected, the literature does not provide much evidence that media leads to behavior change by persuading individuals to adopt new goals. We conclude the review with a discussion of the prospects for successful broadcast media interventions in two domains: public health, a realm where most interventions focus on linking behavior with existing goals, and countering violent extremism (CVE), where most interventions focus on changing goals. We also provide a checklist of desirable components to assist designers of edutainment programming.
... Robust communication campaigns can promote higher level of awareness and stronger community participation, which can ultimately drive behavior change among target stakeholders (Heong et al., 1998;Ronan, 2008). Lack of awareness and, thus, low public support were seen to be among the primary reasons why government programs to manage invasive pest species fail (Genovesi & Bertolino, 2001;Veitch & Clout, 2001). ...
... In southern Vietnam, radio and television were primary sources of pest control information among citrus and mango farmers (van Mele et al., 2002). Heong et al. (1998) also found out that radio drama, leaflets, and posters effectively encouraged Vietnamese rice farmers to reduce the volume of pesticides they use by more than half. ...
... Targeted risk communication strategies is crucial in raising higher awareness and promoting stronger adoption of agricultural innovations. Various researches have recognized the value of carrying out inclusive approaches to communicate pertinent information regarding innovations including the benefits and risks in adopting them (Heong et al., 1998). ...
Thesis
A massive outbreak of coconut scale insect, locally known as cocolisap, recently hit one of the most coconut-productive regions in the Philippines. The rapid spread and wide scale damage caused by the invasive species pushed farmers to adopt various emergency control measures. The study examined the extent of adoption among farmers and their perceptions towards these measures based on a survey of 91 farm households in Tiaong Municipality, Quezon Province. Results of the study show that coconut farmers were relatively aware of the recommended pest control methods despite having low access to agricultural extension services and mass media platforms. Chi-squared tests reveal that membership to farmers’ organizations is significantly associated with farmers’ access to these communication strategies. The study also found out that only a few farmers fully adopted the measures recommended by authorities and experts. Reasons for low adoption include weak coordination and institutional support as well as strong opposition from some farmers especially on chemical and biocontrol measures. Furthermore, qualitative data gathered from the field indicate a general lack of interest among farmers to control the invasive CSIs. T-tests showed significant differences between the perceptions of users and non-users of inorganic insecticides especially on its perceived risks on health, environment, and profit. On the other hand, farmers who decided to adopt biocontrol measures consider the measure to be highly compatible while non-users view the otherwise. Users and non-users of other pest control measures have relatively similar perceptions. Results of the study also highlighted the significant impact of the CSI outbreak to coconut farmers in the study area. Broadly, the number of coconut trees, farm yield, and income decreased before and after the outbreak. Findings, however, show that farmers who utilized some of the recommended measures saw some improvements in yield and income. The study shows that effective communication strategies can lead to higher awareness and stronger adoption of agricultural innovations. Moreover, farmers’ perceptions towards new practices and technologies play a significant role in their decisions whether to use or not use these innovations. Based from these findings, the study recommends authorities to carry out more sustainable and long-term strategies to manage CSIs, improve IPM and ISM services delivery in the country, and strengthen efforts to support Filipino coconut farmers.
... Each group consisted of approximately ten farmers. As less than 10% of all farmers grow rice and fish in their field or apply IPM methods these farmers were, thus, overrepresented in the study (Duong et al., 1998;Heong et al., 1998;Huan et al., 1999) (cf. Table 1). ...
... Only a few knew about natural enemies to pests (Point 10 of Table 4)and consequently most were not aware that pesticides can decrease the number of natural enemies (Point 12 of Table 4) and thus increase the number of pests in their field (Point 13 of Table 4). In 1994 farmers in Long An were asked if they thought that killing of natural enemies can cause more pest problems (Heong et al., 1998). Only 27% of the farmers agreed to this statement. ...
... Only 27% of the farmers agreed to this statement. After an information campaign about negative effects of insecticides, approximately 80% of the farmers agreed to this statement, implying that farmers had developed stronger beliefs that a selective spraying of insecticides is possible and can save money, protect the health and the environment (Heong et al., 1998). ...
Article
Pest management practices among rice and rice–fish farmers and their perception of problems related to pests and pesticides were surveyed in the Mekong Delta. A total number of 64 different pesticides were identified during the survey. Approximately 50% were insecticides, 25% were fungicides and 25% were herbicides. The main insecticides used were pyrethroids (42%) carbamates (23%) and cartap (19%). Non-IPM farmers used twice as many pesticides as IPM farmers. Their application frequency and the amount of active ingredient used were 2–3 times higher per crop, as compared to IPM farmers. During the last three years IPM farmers estimated that they had decreased the amount of pesticides used by approximately 65%, while non-IPM farmers said that they had increased the amount of pesticide used by 40%. Also, farmers growing fish in their rice fields used less pesticide than farmers growing only rice, as pesticides adversely affect cultures of fish. Taking a long-term perspective integrated rice–fish farming with IPM practices provides a sustainable alternative to intensive rice mono-cropping, both from an economic as well as an ecological point of view.
... However, in order for a mass communication plan to succeed, there must be a commitment and support from local people. Heong et al. (1998) noted that success could only be achieved when one could match local partners' priorities to the project goal. When communication is successful, the message would be fed back into policy development, which facilitates the institutionalisation of the message (cf. ...
... When communication is successful, the message would be fed back into policy development, which facilitates the institutionalisation of the message (cf. Heong et al. 1998, Heong & Escalada 2005, and Walgrave et al. 2008). ...
Thesis
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In the Mekong delta region, rodents are one of the major pests that rice farmers need to control regularly using physical and chemical methods. Chemical methods are more commonly used because they are convenient. The Community Trap Barriers System (CTBS) is a new environmentally-friendly, physical rodent control method. Despite being introduced to farmers, the adoption has been slow because the technology requires collective adoption to overcome cost constraints. In this study, collective use of this method was found to be challenging because of two main reasons. First, farmers found it difficult to manage the trap barrier system as a common pool resource. Second, collective use at the field level is constrained by the difficulties to obtain consensus among farmers in the adoption area. Current levels of social capital, the source of collective action, at the field level were found to be in decline when compared with those in the past. The decline is attributed to the changes in relationships between farmers at the field level. Farmers are unable to maintain their traditional networks which were grounded on kin, neighbour, and friendship relations. In addition, social and economic development has improved rural lifestyles but this has resulted in a lack of need for the social capital represented by those traditional relationships, especially for the rice farming practice. The adoption of the CTBS, as well as other collective based technologies will be challenging unless there are efforts to improve social capital at the field level. This may well be best achieved at the local government level because farmers have a strong reliance on the government to facilitate the social capital generation process.
... In practice, the concept of farmer field schools (FFS), which is a social learning technique in which farmers address their ecological and related problems through experimentation and action, led to the adoption of integrated pest management (IPM) techniques (Heong et al. 1999). These practices resulted in sharp reductions in pesticide use and an increase in rice productivity. ...
... Further, species of fish, crabs, and prawns were introduced into rice fields. They increased protein production, nutrient recycling, and disease control (Escalada et al. 1999). ...
... In India, among the four species of leaffolders reported, C. medinalis emerged as the major and regular pest of rice (Padmavathi et al. 2006). Murugesan and Chellaiah (1983) reported that approximately 10% flag leaf damage (FLD) by leaffolder reduced grain yields by 0.13 g per tiller and the number of fully filled grains by 4.5% in a glasshouse study, while in simulation studies, yields were not affected (Heong et al. 1998). Shanmugam et al. (2006) identified leaffolder as one of the most serious productivity constraints responsible for yield gap of rice in Tamil Nadu, India, accounting for $11.18% losses. ...
... P £ 0.5) at tillering stage. Heong et al. (1998) also reported that the rice plant can tolerate damage up to 20% without any economic yield loss helped by compensatory mechanism. However, data in the present study indicated that, under controlled conditions, with increase in larval density from 1 to 5 per pot, there is an increase in leaf damage and in per cent unfilled grains (table 2). ...
Article
Influence of leaffolder feeding on chlorophyll, PS II activity and plant–water relations, effect of larval density on leaf damage and time course studies on larval feeding behaviour on altered physiological changes in TN1 rice culture were studied. Quantification of yield losses in the field caused by leaffolder was also assessed. Leaffolder damage resulted in 57% reduction in chlorophyll content, 23% reduction in PS II activity and 23% reduction in relative water content in comparison with control. Rice leaffolder larva folds the leaf and scrapes the green tissue from within the fold resulting in scorching and drying of the leaves. Larval density had differentially influenced effective leaf area of rice crop. Larval densities of more than 3 larvae per hill at maximum tillering stage resulted up to 20% unfilled grains, 28–57% reduction in PS II activity and 23% reduction in relative water content in comparison with the control. At flowering stage, flag leaf area damage of above 25% resulted in more than 50% unfilled grains over control, indicating direct effect of yield reduction in rice. Thus, a cumulative effect of loss in chlorophyll, reduced photosynthate availability and altered water relations caused by the leaffolder injury to flag leaf lead to greater yield loss in rice.
... Over the past two decades, it is estimated approximately eighteen percent of farmers from the Mekong Delta have been FFS-trained [11]. Meanwhile, IRRI-initiated IPM has focused on "no early spray" campaigns and made use of cost-effective well-developed multi-media [11,15]. The campaigns motivating that insecticide application in the first 30 days after transplanting or 40 days after sowing is unnecessary were instigated in two remote districts in 1994 and three years later, eighteen provinces in the South of Vietnam have applied this model from local funding, leading to the adoption by 550,000 farmers over millions of hectares of rice, while the media campaign was estimated to reach ninety percent of farmer households in the Mekong Delta [15,31]. ...
... Meanwhile, IRRI-initiated IPM has focused on "no early spray" campaigns and made use of cost-effective well-developed multi-media [11,15]. The campaigns motivating that insecticide application in the first 30 days after transplanting or 40 days after sowing is unnecessary were instigated in two remote districts in 1994 and three years later, eighteen provinces in the South of Vietnam have applied this model from local funding, leading to the adoption by 550,000 farmers over millions of hectares of rice, while the media campaign was estimated to reach ninety percent of farmer households in the Mekong Delta [15,31]. ...
Article
Within shifting development paradigms, in the Mekong Delta, the largest and most productive agriculture region in Vietnam, integrated pest management has for decades been introduced to help farmers more effectively manage their farms and natural resources, and recently a participatory approach has been promoted in agricultural extension work. Using those two cases that illustrate liminal states local knowledge users inhabit, this paper investigates knowledge acquisition and adoption for sustainable agriculture under the threshold concept research. Based on qualitative data analysis from a one-year field-research in the Mekong Delta centered around the results of a two-round Delphi survey with the participation of local researchers to identify threshold concepts, our findings highlight that localised threshold concepts developed from everyday practice, which we coin everyday threshold concepts, should be emphasised to address the stuckness in learning and practising participatory and sustainable development and that threshold concept discovery needs to be a joint journey of global-local, trainer-trainee and science-everyday knowledges. The paper thus contributes to the growing research body of threshold concepts by integrating the ontological dimension -the level of social interaction in knowledge creation -into the current framework that primarily concentrates on epistemological discussions – a direction that invites further research.
... B angladesh has recently become self-sufficient in rice, with a production of 40 million tonnes in 2005, an increase of about 50% over the past 10 years (FAO, 2006). This has mainly been the result of improved varieties, irrigation in the dry season (boro) 1 and crop fertilizer management, along with improvements in the traditional monsoon rice crop (aman). 2 The dry season rice now accounts for more than 50% of rice production. ...
... This was calculated based on the paddy price of 6.75 Taka/kg and at a conversion rate of 100 Taka equals $1.76 US at the time of the project. The national yield average in 2004 was 3.61 tonnes/ha(FAO, 2006). The calculated gain of 17 times the project investment cost is a conservative estimate as poor farmers also lease land. ...
Article
LEARNER-CENTERED VIDEOS can contribute to institutional innova-tions and social inclusion of the poor. From 1999 to 2002 in the Seed Health Improvement Project, women in rural Bangladesh received hands-on training to improve their seed management. Rice yields increased by 5–15%. The sub-sequent farmer-to-farmer extension reached 13,000 farmers by the end of 2004.
... Additionally, information and knowledge can be transferred informally between neighboring farmers, friends, and family. Substantial research has investigated the effectiveness of alternative IPM dissemination strategies (Heong et al., 1998;Rola, Jamias, and Quizon, 2002;Feder, Murgai, and Quizon, 2004;Godtland et al., 2004;Mauceri et al., 2007;Ricker-Gilbert et al., 2008). Some researchers have promoted use of participatory techniques with individualized training, whereas others have called for less intensive and more widespread diffusion mechanisms. ...
... It is the cheapest form of information diffusion per person reached and has the potential to reach widespread, diverse audiences (Bentley et al., 2003). Research suggests that mass media can adequately convey simple messages about IPM and positively impact farmer perceptions, thus encouraging adoption (Heong et al., 1998). Its use, however, encounters some constraints including low literacy and limited access to media resources in some households and areas of Bangladesh. ...
Article
Full-text available
Cost-effective extension strategies are needed to promote widespread adoption of agricultural technologies in developing countries. Integrated pest management (IPM) practices, for example, can offer economic, health, and environmental benefits but remain largely underused. This study evaluates the current IPM dissemination program implemented by the Bangladesh Department of Agricultural Extension and uses a linear programming model to examine alternative strategies to improve IPM adoption. Results suggest that technology transfer programs may increase their impact by reallocating funding from intensive but costly interpersonal communication methods (i.e., farmer field schools) to less intensive methods (i.e., mass media and field days) that reach broader audiences.
... The findings of Heong et al., (1998) after the mass media campaign they carried out showed that the massive changes in the farmers' attitude and practices of the use of pesticides was due to the farmers' initial erroneous perceptions of the damage to the crops rather than the economic rational. The motivation of the farmers to adopt the innovation depended on the savings in chemicals and labour cost as well as the fact that the innovation could be tested which were emphasized by the campaign. ...
... Feedback from farmers will also be facilitated using a toll free number. Heong et al., (1998) andRoger, (1995) showed that the media is the most influential on farmers' perception of new innovation. The use of Mobile phones as an organ of the media through sending of paging messages will do just the same. ...
Article
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In this paper, the authors developed a detailed plan capable of delivering innovative farm information to and among farmers using mobile phones as the main channel. To develop the plan-which clearly shows the operational flow processes of an efficient mobile phone based farm information diffusion structure-the authors reviewed previous research on the need to diffuse innovative farm information to and among farmers, the potentials of using mobile phones for the process and the challenges to be overcome towards facilitating the process. The detailed plan developed will enable policy makers and other stake holders to identify hurdles to innovative farm information diffusion, their possible solutions, the necessary structure to be put in place in Nigeria and the implications of implementing the plan on the Nigerian farm policy. The authors inferred from their findings that mobile phones have the capacity to facilitate information diffusion process by providing a path of low resistance to information flow thereby complimenting the efforts of "local influentials" and extension workers.
... Most importantly, education can contribute to people correctly identifying, treating and preventing the disease. Educational attainment and knowledge has played an important role in the perception and practice of people in controlling many diseases including malaria in Nigeria (Dike et al. 2006), bovine trypanosomiasis in Kenya (Machila et al. 2007), and pest management in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam (Heong et al. 1998 Although newspapers, radio, and television can be used to disseminate information, in this situation it is believed that farmer meetings would be the best way to improve awareness of diseases such as CSF and methods of improving animal husbandry, management and production. Farmer groups have been established in Alor and have resulted in a significant reduction in the deaths from CSF as well as increased adoption of new management and improved husbandry practices (ACIAR website). ...
... It is possible that individuals who have negative attitudes toward the frogs and live in areas with high densities of frogs may change their attitude toward the frog to one of acceptance. This pattern has been shown in pest management behaviors for rice farmers (Heong et al., 1998) and is probably grounded in some level of self-interest (Hills, 1993), or a need to decrease the psychological discomfort that comes from holding internally inconsistent beliefs, ideas, or opinions (Festinger, 1957). ...
... The present findings showed that there was no significant difference for rate of yield loss under lower densities. Murugesan and Chellaiah (1983) reported that approximately 10% flag leaf damage (FLD) caused by leaffolder larvae reduced grain yields by 0.13 g per tiller and the number of fully-filled grains by 4.5% in a glasshouse study, but these authors also reported that yields were not affected in simulation studies (Heong et al. 1998). However, the present experiments indicated that there was a significant yield loss under higher densities. ...
Article
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The rice leaffolder (RLF), Cnaphalocrocis medinalis Guenée (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae), and the white-backed rice planthopper (WBPH), Sogatella furcifera Horváth (Hemiptera: Delphacidae), are major insect pests in China and several other Asian countries. These two pests commonly occur simultaneously or in a temporal sequence. Thus, the investigation of the effect of complex infestations or temporal sequence infestations by these pests on rice yield has a practical significance for the control of these pests. The present study comprised experiments with the following four different variables in potted rice at the tillering stage: single pest species infestation, complex infestation, complete combination infestation and temporal sequence infestation (C. medinalis infestation prior to S. furcifera and S. furcifera infestation prior to C. medinalis). The results showed that the four infestations resulted in a significant decrease in 1000-grain weight (1000GW) and rate of yield loss (RYL) but an increase in blighted grain rate (BGR), with a significant positive correlation with the infestation density. However, the influences of the complex infestation, complete combination infestation or sequence infestation on the 1000GW, BGR and RYL were greater than those of the single pest species infestations but did not have addition effects, i.e., the effects of the complex infestation and combination infestation or sequence infestation on the 1000GW, BGR and RYL were less than the additive effects of the two single pest species infestations at the same densities. In the condition of the same total infestation pressure, no significant differences in the 1000GW, BGR and RYL were found between C. medinalis infestation prior to S. furcifera and S. furcifera infestation prior to C. medinalis as well as between the sequence infestation and the complex infestation.
... Consequently, we should reduce the use of insecticides as prophylactic method as well as other sense and explore alternative sustainable approaches like as The "Three Reductions, Three Gains" program [30]. This campaign successfully reduced famers' insecticide use by 33% in Mekong Delta [31] and 70% in some provinces [32] in Vietnam. ...
Article
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Concerns about pesticide focus on insecticide resistance-but persistent changes to our intact diverse community could have more serious consequences.
... Our findings support that video is useful for both approaches. With respect to adoption, our findings are similar to how multi-media campaigns (leaflet, poster and radio) have been used successfully in changing the rice pest belief system among Vietnamese farmers (Heong, Escalada, Huan, & Mai, 1998). The campaign was based on one simple rule of thumb, 'do not spray insecticides for leaf folder control in first 40 days after sowing'. ...
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Despite the general success of farmer-capacity-building methods such as Farmer Field School in promoting pest management innovations, only those farmers directly involved benefit. How can agricultural extension enable farmer-to-farmer learning about botanical pesticides beyond such schools? We wanted to know how different learning methods, such as video shows and workshops, change farmers’ knowledge, attitudes and practices about botanical pesticides. This paper explains how video engages men and women farmers in spreading botanical pesticides across 12 villages in Bogra District, north-western Bangladesh. We conducted ex ante and ex post surveys among farmers from November 2009 to September 2010. For data analysis, we used t-test and McNemer and Wilcoxon sign rank tests. Our findings suggest that video improves the ability of both male and female farmers to communicate about pest management among themselves and with other stakeholders, as ‘intricate ethno-agricultural practices’. Video-mediated learning sessions are more effective than conventional workshop training in enhancing farmers’ knowledge about botanical pesticides, changing their attitude and finally taking a decision to adopt these methods. In other words, video is capable of communicating complex issues such as the biological and physical processes that underlie pest management innovations. From our case, we conclude that agricultural extension is more effective with the use of facilitated video learning and that this process clarifies complex agro-ecological principles, bias and normative perceptions of the learners. Also, video-mediated learning is not only transferable across villages, but also works well in combination with other media, such as radio, television and mobile phones.
... The effectiveness of the strategic communication approach in persuading farmers to adopt recommended practices has been demonstrated in many projects, e.g. a media campaign in Vietnam in 1994 aimed at encouraging rice farmers to reduce pesticide spraying (Heong et al. 1998;Escalada et al. 1999). The project was found to reduce insecticide use by 53% with no loss in production. ...
Article
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High quality tree seedlings are critical factors which determine the success of tree plantation projects. To produce high quality seedlings, nursery operators need to apply appropriate nursery management practices. However, tree seedlings produced by nursery operators in the Philippines are often of low quality, due in part to weak organization in the nursery sector and lack of skills in the application of nursery practices among nursery operators. The Q-Seedling Project or Seedling Enhancement Project funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) is being implemented in Leyte and Northern Mindanao to remedy this skills gap. The project includes a communication component to promote widespread adoption of best management practice in forest nurseries. Following the strategic communication approach, information dissemination activities in the project are based on the needs of the target users. Training workshops have been held on producing high quality seedlings. Also, communication materials have been developed for nursery operations, including a training guide, videos, instructional posters on Q-seedling production technologies, and a jingle about Q-seedlings. This paper describes the design and use of these communication materials.
... For example, face-to-face drama and theatre has been used as an effective communication mode for health-and development-related messages (Gosh, Patil, Tiwari & Dash, 2006;Mlama, 1991). In the Mekong Delta of Vietnam, radio was useful in reaching farmers in the 1990s (Heong, Escalada, Huan, & Mai, 1998). Communicators in India have used touch screens in markets to provide local producers with information in English and regional languages about silk-related information (Kirsur, Phaniraj, Jadhav, & Qadri, 2010). ...
Chapter
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Graduate degree programmes in science communication have a role to play in developing the professional capacity of both scientists and science communicators. University-based science communication programmes build local capacity that is theoretically grounded to ensure that scientific research can be communicated effectively with those who need it. Science communication programmes make contributions to the development of evidence-based policy as well as to assist in public involvement and use of science. And so it is particularly important for people in developing countries to develop understanding, skills and expertise in science communication. Collaboration between scientists, academics and professional communicators in programme development can lead to authentic educational experiences with immediate and long-term positive outcomes for all parties. Curriculum should be theoretically grounded while also providing opportunities for students to think like a professional science communicator, to hone skills needed in their careers, to develop collaborative networks and to create communication resources to add to their portfolio. Products from science communication programmes can include media releases, consultancy evaluation reports, communication strategies, displays, science interviews and stories. These should be useful to professional science communicators in kick-starting their careers as well as to the organisations for whom the products are created. This chapter describes an educational philosophy that can be used in programme development, a checklist to help determine programme priorities and examples that have been tried and tested.
... Chlorpyrifos ethyl (CPF) is a commonly used organophosphate (OP) insecticide in the Mekong Delta (Heong et al. 1998;Huan et al. 1999;Phong et al. 2010). Although OPs have a lower tendency to bioaccumulate in aquatic organisms compared with many organochlorines, they are often more toxic to aquatic organisms (Tilak et al. 2001). ...
Article
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The high use of pesticides in intensive rice farming in the Mekong Delta constitutes a potential hazard to the environment and to people's health. Chlorpyrifos ethyl (CPF) is a commonly used organophosphate (OP) insecticide, but information about its potential negative impacts on the aquatic environment in the Mekong Delta is scarce. Both acute and subacute toxicity tests were performed in a static nonrenewable system to investigate the effects of CPF on brain acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity in native climbing perch fingerlings (Anabas testudineus, Bloch, 1972). Environmental parameters, such as dissolved oxygen, water temperature, and pH, were similar to field conditions in the Mekong Delta. In a 96-h lethal concentration (LC50) test, fingerlings of climbing perch were randomly exposed to five levels of CPF ranging from 0.8 to 4.5 ppm. Five sublethal levels of CPF (1, 5, 10, 15, and 20 % of the 96-h LC50 value) were tested to assess the sensitivity and recovery of the brain AChE activity in climbing perch fingerlings exposed to CPF. The results showed that CPF were moderately toxic to climbing perch with a 96-h median LC50 of 1.73 ppm. CPF also caused long-term AChE inhibition with 70 % inhibition remaining after 96 h for the four highest test concentrations. The recovery of brain AChE activity in fish placed in CPF-free water was very slow, and after 7 days the brain AChE activity was still significant lower in fish from the four highest concentrations compared with the control. The results from this study indicate that OP insecticides, such as CPF, can have long-lasting sublethal effects on aquatic species in the Mekong Delta.
... In Vietnam, two million farmers 521 have cut pesticide use from more than 3 sprays to 1 per season; in Sri Lanka, 55,000 522 farmers have reduced use from 3 to 0.5 per season; and in Indonesia, one million farmers 523 have cut use from 3 sprays to 1 per season. In no case has reduced pesticide use led to 524 lower rice yields ( Evelleens et al., 1996;Heong et al., 1998;Mangan and Mangan, 1998;525 Desilles, 1999;Jones, 1999). Amongst these are reports that many farmers are now able to 526 grow rice entirely without pesticides: 25% of field school trained farmers in Indonesia, 20527 33% in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam, and 75% in parts of the Philippines. ...
... Changing farmers' behaviour in rice pest management was possible in Vietnam through radio dramas, although the message was limited to one simple rule-of-thumb: do not spray insecticides for leaf folder control in the first 40 days after sowing (Heong et al., 1998). Video has been used extensively in rural development (Norrish, 1998;Coldevin, 2000;Bessette, 2001), even including topics such as soil fertility (Protz, 1998). ...
... Recently, pesticides have increasingly been used to combat the occurrence of brown planthopper and rice grassy stunt disease in the delta (Berg and Tam, 2012;Toan and Cong, 2018). Here, farmers often have the misconception that the more pesticide used, the higher the rice yield (Heong et al., 1998;Huan et al., 1999). As such, the overuse of pesticides is common practice in the delta (Berg and Tam, 2012;Toan and Cong, 2018). ...
Article
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Pesticides containing diazinon are frequently used in agriculture in the Vietnamese Mekong delta region leading to their potential residual occurrence in the environment. Under laboratory conditions, exposure to diazinon has been shown to result in adverse inhibition of cholinesterase enzyme (ChE) activity and subsequent death in several fish species. This study investigated a 96-h median lethal concentration (LC50) of diazinon concentrations from 0.08 to 1.25 mg/L on juvenile giant freshwater prawns (Macrobrachium rosenbergii de Man, 1879) in tanks in the laboratory. Inhibition of ChE in the flesh and in the eyes of the tested shrimps after exposed to diazinon concentrations of 2.7, 27, 67.5 μg/L equivalent to 1%, 10%, 25% LC50-96 h was calculated. The results indicated that diazinon was highly toxic to giant freshwater prawn with a low LC50-96 h of 270 μg/L. The activity of ChE in the flesh was more sensitive to diazinon than that in the eyes. Furthermore, in the future, the activity of ChE in the flesh or in the eyes of shrimps has potential to be used as biomarker for rapid recognition of diazinon contamination in water.
... In the Philippines participating farmers reduced their insecticide sprays by 89% and their belief that early sprays were necessary was reduced by 90%. In Vietnam a multi-media campaign was used to encourage farmers to stop early season spraying [38]. In provinces where the campaign was implemented, farmers reduced insecticide sprays by 53% and had also changed their beliefs. ...
Article
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Ecological engineering (EE) involves the design and management of human systems based on ecological principles to maximize ecosystem services and minimize external inputs. Pest management strategies have been developed but farmer adoption is lacking and unsustainable. EE practices need to be socially acceptable and it requires shifts in social norms of rice farmers. In many countries where pesticides are being marketed as “fast moving consumer goods” (FMCG) it is a big challenge to shift farmers’ loss-averse attitudes. Reforms in pesticide marketing policies are required. An entertainment education TV series was able to reach wider audience to improve farmers’ ecological literacy, shifting beliefs and practices. To sustain adoption of ecologically based practices organizational structures, incentives systems and communication strategies to support the new norms and practices are needed.
... FFS are not an extension method; they increase knowledge of agroecology, problemsolving skills, group building, and political strength. They can be particularly effective where there are simple messages (for example, do not use insecticides in the first 40 days of rice cultivation because herbivore-damaged plants recover with no yield loss) (58). FFS have been used in 90 countries (34,59,60), with 19 million farmer graduates, and now some 20,000 FFS graduates are now running FFS for other farmers. ...
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Redesign of agricultural systems is essential to deliver optimum outcomes as ecological and economic conditions change. The combination of agricultural processes in which production is maintained or increased, while environmental outcomes are enhanced, is currently known as sustainable intensification (SI). SI aims to avoid the cultivation of more land, and thus avoid the loss of unfarmed habitats, but also aims to increase overall system performance without net environmental cost. For example, large changes are now beginning to occur to maximize biodiversity by means of integrated pest management, pasture and forage management, the incorporation of trees into agriculture, and irrigation management, and with small and patch systems. SI is central to the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations and to wider efforts to improve global food and nutritional security.
... However, this potential is highly dependent on exposure to technologies and access to information (i.e. basic training and access to advice) (Heong et al. 1998(Heong et al. , 2002Haefele et al. 2002;Becker et al. 2003;Escalada and Heong 2004;Rao et al. 2007;Damalas and Khan 2017). ...
Article
In West Africa, weeds are major production constraints in rain-fed lowland rice systems—often located in the inland valleys. Weed management technologies have been developed and promoted in such rice systems, but adoption by farmers lags behind, probably because of insufficient considerations of the system diversity or the farm-specific characteristics during technology development or promotion. This study aimed to identify farm-type specific entry points for innovations in weed management practices of smallholders in rice-based systems in inland valleys. We conducted farm surveys in the Mono Couffo region of Benin in 66 fields in 2010 and 2011 in a range of socio-economic settings typical for smallholder farms. We would strongly propose to move ‘in the Mono Couffo region of Benin’ from the end of the sentence to the beginning, right after ‘We conducted farm surveys’. This way, we do not give the impression that the smallholder farms we surveyed are necessarily only typical for the Mono Couffo region. In fact we chose this site as it was considered to be representative for lowland rice-based production systems in West Africa, as we argue in the Materials and Methods. In the title we also refer to ‘West Africa’, not Benin. A combination of multivariate analyses using Principal Component Analysis and Agglomerative Hierarchical Cluster is helpful in constructing farm typologies. This categorization, in turn, enables the assessment of farm-type specific weed management strategies and consequently the identification of entry points for innovation. Specific entry points for innovations in weed management include: (i) complementing the existing range of curative options by more preventive measures, (ii) diversifying the existing range of curative measures (mainly hand weeding and herbicide application) by measures that are both non-chemical and labor-saving, and (iii) improving women farmers’ access to information and inputs by targeted training endeavors and conducive credit systems.
... Exhibitions should be arranged to disseminate scientific information (Sandhu and Dhillon, 2005) and to distribute inputs like seed kits in association with universities, scientists, public and private agencies and NGOs as opined by Shanmugasundaram (2004). More leaflets should be produced by DoF as Heong et al. (1998) observed that the most commonly cited source farmers heard from was a leaflet, as it could provide information on innovation and its consequences. Subsidies should be availed for the growth of community owned internet centers as Cecchini and Scott (2003) found out that very few farmers in India owned computer with internet access. ...
Research
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The study was conducted in five districts which had the highest inland fish farmer population in Kerala. Primary data were collected from 225 aquaculture farmers who availed support through the Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA) and from 165 Department of Fisheries (DoF) staff officials who provided ATMA support to farmers. Contact of farmers with various resource persons was quantified by resource person contact index from the perspective of both farmers and DoF staff, thereafter, to find that there was no significant difference in the index scores, which indicated adequate rapport between farmers and resource persons. Regularity of different farm information dissemination activities conducted by ATMA and satisfaction arising out of it, was assessed among farmers, by means of Garrett method. The different sources through which farmers became aware of ATMA were found out. Policy suggestions were proposed to improve the extension support meant for farmers, which would help in aquaculture development.
... Literature provides evidence that group methods require moderate amounts of extension funds to produce the highest amount of adoption of practices (Wilson and Gallup, 1955). It is also indicated that mass media are the cheapest form of information diff usion per person reached with the potential to reach widespread, diverse audiences (Wilson and Gallup, 1955;Heong et al., 1998;Bentley et al., 2003;Kiplangat, 2003). In view of our survey respondents' access to or ownership of radio, television and cell phone, the dominant use of individual methods such as farm visits, by most agents as reported by most respondents, suggests that agents do not consider respondents' available assets in their use of channels for eff ective and effi cient communication of farm management information. ...
Article
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Changes occurring in the Extension environment include that of climate. Reduced and sporadic rainfall is among the effects of climate change and variability with consequent negative effects on food production. Smallholder agriculture in most developing countries world-wide, including South Africa, is largely rain-fed. Extension agents, therefore, need to constantly improve their capabilities to remain useful to farming communities. The purpose of the paper is to determine Extension agents' climate variability coping competencies required to effectively support smallholder crop farmers' production. The study adopted a multi-stage random sampling approach to site and respondents' selection. Semi-structured questionnaire was used to collect data in 2014 from smallholder crop farmers in four municipalities of Limpopo province. Information was also collected from Extension managers and field-level extension agents of the Limpopo Department of Agriculture by means of questionnaires. The most popular climate variability coping strategy promoted by most extension agents was conservation agriculture. Small yield differences between Extension service-recipients and non-recipients indicate that Extension support has minimal effect on farmers' production. Agents need new competencies regarding correct application conservation agriculture. The study recommends the involvement of extension agents, scientists and farmers in adaptive trials for effective implementation of conservation agricultural practices to improve crop yields.
... Literature provides evidence that group methods require moderate amounts of extension funds to produce the highest amount of adoption of practices (Wilson and Gallup, 1955). It is also indicated that mass media are the cheapest form of information diff usion per person reached with the potential to reach widespread, diverse audiences (Wilson and Gallup, 1955;Heong et al., 1998;Bentley et al., 2003;Kiplangat, 2003). In view of our survey respondents' access to or ownership of radio, television and cell phone, the dominant use of individual methods such as farm visits, by most agents as reported by most respondents, suggests that agents do not consider respondents' available assets in their use of channels for eff ective and effi cient communication of farm management information. ...
... Đi đôi với việc thâm canh hóa trong sản xuất lúa thì việc sử dụng thuốc bảo vệ thực vật trên đồng ruộng cũng tăng. Đa số nông dân Đồng bằng sông Cửu Long cho rằng phun càng nhiều thuốc bảo vệ thực vật thì năng suất lúa càng cao (Heong et al., 1998). Lượng thuốc sử dụng cho độc canh lúa bình quân 1,8 kg hoạt chất/ha/vụ (Berg, 2001) và được phun 5,7 lần/vụ (năm 1994) đến 8,2 lần/vụ (năm 1999) (Berg, 2001). ...
Article
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Pesticide uses for rice increased greatly in the Mekong delta. Although spraying pesticides is one of common ways to protect rice from insects, it also causes negative effects. Climbing perch (Anabas testudineus) is often found on ricefields; therefore, fish could not avoid of exposure to pesticides. Dissolved oxygen (DO) and water temperature (WT) on ricefields are highly fluctuated. Three levels of WT (20, 25 & 30 o C) and two levels of DO (<2 & >5mg/L) were conducted in laboratory to assess effects of diazinon on brain and muscle cholinesterase activity of the perch. Results indicate that WT, DO and interaction between WT and DO did not affect on brain and muscle ChE in the control fish. Increasing WT leaded to more ChE inhibition in diazinon treatment; DO and interaction between DO and WT did not affect on ChE inhibition by diazinon. The study suggests that the species is more risk of ChE inhibition in the high temperature.
... K.L, M. M. escalada, N. h. huan and V.Mai (1998). Use of communication media in changing rice farmers' pest management in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam. ...
... The study was carried out using a pretested with 20 individuals ( Hair, Money, Samouel, & Page, 2007) and modified questionnaire. 2017, Vol. 7, No. 11 ISSN: 2222 , Sharifzadeh, & Damalas, 2015;Terano, Mohamed, Shamsudin, & Latif, 2015) 4 Communication 5 ( Heong, Escalada, Huarp, & Map, 1998) 5 Dependent Practice 3 ( Assis & Mohd Ismail, 2011) In the demographic section, the respondent were asked to provide their personal information such as age, gender, education level, experience in rice planting, variety of rice planted, size of rice field and average yield per hectare. In the knowledge dimension the respondent were asked whether the farmers' know about the presence and functions of natural enemies in the field. ...
Article
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Rice is a staple food in Malaysia and contributes 8.9% of the national gross domestic product in 2015. The productivity has increased from time to time in order to meet the high demand now days. The use of pesticides technology was widely used the rice production all over Malaysia due to the prompt results of combating pests. The heavy usage of pesticides has led to the pollution of the ecosystem including the beneficial insects. Decision of spraying was made by the farmer themselves which were influenced by their knowledge, attitude, awareness and communication regarding the presence of natural enemies in their rice field. However, these factors has not been measured properly in order to determine their significance towards the farmers practice. Hence, a survey has been conducted to determine the proposed measurement in rice farming area in Melaka. Farmers from three main rice farming area were interviewed using questionnaire as the main instrument. The questionnaire has been pretested prior to the actual survey. A total of 224 farmers were sampled out of 860 rice farmers' population throughout Melaka. Data were analyzed for their central tendencies as well as significant relationship. Result showed that knowledge, attitude and communications has given a significant effect to the farmers' practices towards enhancing the natural enemies in rice fields. However, the findings also found that the awareness level is inadequate among farmers. Therefore, there is a need for continuous awareness program by the local authorities regarding the natural enemies in the rice field in the future.
... Knowledge and perceived benefit, as cognitive factors, are expected to foster participation in AES. Similarly, greater knowledge, ecological literacy, and learning about the beneficial aspects of AES measures can increase likelihood of engagement (Heong et al., 1998;Pretty and Smith, 2004). Based on measures of intention to participate in AES in the future Guillem and Barnes (2013) conclude that "highlighting the impacts of different management practices on birdlife is likely to improve participation rates" (Science for Environment Policy, 2017, p.40). ...
Article
Agri-environmental schemes have become an integral tool of land use management policies in ecologically valuable river valleys, that are commonly recognized as very important bird habitats. When high adoption of extensive agricultural practices is not only a political goal, but also a necessary condition for conservation of vulnerable ecosystems, understanding of farmers’ preferences is utterly important. Therefore, we use the case of Biebrza Marshes – a wetland complex and one of the largest wildlife refuges in Europe, which is located in northeastern Poland – and employ stated preference methods to investigate farmers’ preferences for adopting several agricultural practices, such as precision fertilization, crop diversification, catch crops, peatland protection, extensive use of meadows, and the reduction of livestock stocking density. Farmers’ willingness to participate in selected practices is explained using characteristics of farmers and their farms, subjectively and objectively measured farmers’ environmental knowledge, as well as by experimentally controlled information treatments about environmental benefits of agri-environmental contracts. The results provide new insights into the sources of farmers’ preference heterogeneity and show how different motivations relate to participation in agri-environmental schemes. Based on the results and consultations with local stakeholders, we make recommendations for a more efficient design and targeting of land use management instruments, including future agri-environmental schemes.
... Rice yields in the main cropping season increased from 4.3 t ha -1 to about 5.4 t ha -1 ; successful control of Echinochloa spp. was obtained and, interestingly, herbicide use declined, probably as a result of improved land preparation and leveling. There is also ample experience in implementation of integrated insect management in rice in Asia [238][239][240] upon which we can model an integrated weed management approach for herbicide resistance. For sustainable herbicide-resistance management, control measures must deplete the weed seedbank. ...
Chapter
Rice is the most important food crop in the world. Globally, it provides 23 and 16% of human per capita energy and protein, respectively. ¹ About 153 million ha of rice was planted in 1999 for a total estimated production of 589 million t. ² However, by the year 2025, rice production must increase by 40% over current levels if the growing demands for food are to be satisfied, ³ although low world market prices threaten producer income and future grain supply. ⁴ Overcoming constraints to rice production and increased yields, including weed management, is vital to satisfy future needs for this grain.
... These systems include rice and fish or rice and giant freshwater prawn (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) culture. According to Heong, Escalada, Huan, and Mai (1998), the rice farmers in the Mekong Delta considered that an intensive use of pesticides will result in higher rice production. ...
Article
To develop an easy and reliable method for detecting pesticides and their residues in the Mekong Delta, a GC‐MS analytical method was developed and validated according to European guidelines (SANTE/11945/2015) for the determination of residues of three pesticides (quinalphos, trifluralin and dichlorvos) in water. The limit of detection (LOD) and the limit of quantification (LOQ) were 0.002 and 0.007 μg/L, respectively, for quinalphos and trifluralin, and 0.016 and 0.053 μg/L, respectively, for dichlorvos and quinalphos. The repeatability, the within‐laboratory reproducibility as well as the trueness met the European criteria. The recovery rate ranged between 72% (for dichlorvos and quinalphos) and 82% (for trifluralin). The developed method was then applied for the analysis of 33 water samples, collected in April 2013, at the beginning of the rainy season in the Mekong Delta in Vietnam. Thirteen samples were from rice field, 10 were collected from cat fish ponds and from red tilapia cages. Results showed that only 9% of total water samples analysed contained residues of pesticides, but only in water from rice fish systems. From the 13 samples taken in these systems, quinalphos was detected in three samples. The other two pesticides were not detected. A comparison between analytical results obtained from GC‐MS and an alternative method, that is GC‐ECD indicated that GC‐ECD is less sensitive than GC‐MS, with LOQ ranging from 0.37 to 1.18 (depending on the pesticide). However, for samples with concentrations above these LOQ, no significant difference was observed between the results obtained from the two analytical methodologies.
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Objective The purpose of this study was to determine the safety behavior predictors related to the food safety of greenhouse products among the greenhouse owners of Jiroft city based on the Protection Motivation Theory (PMT). Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted with a descriptive-correlation approach in 2018 on 228 greenhouse owners. A researcher-made questionnaire that included demographic variables, PMT structures, and safety behavior was administered. Results Of the surveyed greenhouse owners, 98.2% were men. The participants were aged from 21 to 70 years. The mean scores of all PMT constructs other than response costs, and safety behaviors other than that of preventing the prevalence of pests were at a moderate level. The prediction rate of safety behaviors by PMT constructs was 74.4%. Meanwhile, perceived costs' construct (β = −0.349), response efficacy (β = 0.251), and protection motivation (β = 0.424) had important roles. Conclusion Given the predictive power of PMT constructs for safety behaviors related to food safety, educational interventions based on this theory are required.
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In this study, factors regarding the excessive use of pesticides and those particularly involved in the cultivation of high input and low input rice crop were investigated. Farmers’ sources of Basmati rice seed acquisition and perception of pest insects’ incidence and their management practices in rice crop were also evaluated. Results indicated that the main reason for farmers’ adoption of high input rice farming was to get better yields and profit. The main sources of rice seed acquisition were the home retained, local market and seed companies. Farmers were well aware of major pest insects of rice and reported moderate incidence of rice stem borers and high incidence of rice leaffolder but little was known about natural enemies and diseases. The most common reason for excessive use of insecticides was the misconception that pesticides were necessary to increase the yield. Farmers still relied to a great extent on chemicals to control the pests in rice crop and majority of them ignored economic threshold levels (ETL) recommended for the control. But the effective and economic suppression of insect pests in rice ecosystem by the judicial use of pesticides on the basis of ETL is utmost essential. Therefore, ETLs for the chemical control of rice stem borers (Scirpophaga incertulus Wlk. & S. innotata Wlk.) and rice leaffolder (Cnaphalocrosis medinalis Gn.) in the traditional Basmati rice growing area, the Kallar tract were also determined to be 5% dead-hearts (DH) and 3% folded leaves for stem borers and rice leaffolder respectively. The use of insecticides ignoring recommended ETLs along with higher doses of fertilizers is not only the cause of economic losses but also harmful to the insect biodiversity. So the effect of high inputs (HIP) farming practices on insect communities was also investigated. The higher number of species richness and abundance were measured for low input (LIP) systems. On the other hand some insects were abundant in HIP systems because of their adaptation to such kind of habitat. The insect species richness and abundance increased with rice crop age and showed close relationship with crop. All the major trophic guilds, except non rice pest (NRP), were also in abundance for LIP systems. Some species of insect were found sensitive to agrochemical pollution and were regarded as bioindicators. The higher Shannon’s value in some cases for HIP farms suggested that agrochemicals had a significant impact in eliminating the rare species and hence increased the Shannon’s and evenness values among the species. The overall effect of HIP rice farming on insect species richness and abundance was significantly negative. The LIP systems were found having greater diversity along with supporting a good number of rare species.
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This Campbell systematic review examines the effectiveness of farmer field schools in improving intermediate outcomes (such as knowledge and pesticide use) and final outcomes (such as agricultural yields, incomes and empowerment) in low‐ and middle‐income countries (LMICs), as well as implementation factors associated with programme success and failure. The review sythesises evidence from 92 impact evaluations, of which 15 were of sufficient quality for policy‐oriented findings, and 20 qualitative studies. Farmer field schools improve farmers' knowledge and adoption of beneficial practices, and reduce overuse of pesticides. This leads to positive outcomes for farmers: on average, a 13% increase in agricultural yields and a 20% increase in income. Farmer field schools also reduce pesticide use and environmental degradation. However, the evidence for these outcomes comes from short‐term evaluations of pilot programmes, and no studies with a low risk of bias are available. In programmes that were delivered at a national scale, studies conducted more than two years after implementation did not show any positive outcomes from the programme. For large‐scale programmes, recruiting and training appropriate facilitators was problematic. Authors' conclusions Farmer field schools (FFS) are a common approach used to transfer specialist knowledge, promote skills and empower farmers around the world. At least 10 million farmers in 90 countries have attended such schools. FFS are implemented by facilitators using participatory “discovery‐based” learning based on adult education principles. Many different implementing bodies have been involved. Field schools have a range of objectives, including tackling overuse of pesticides and other harmful practices, improving agricultural and environmental outcomes, and empowering disadvantaged farmers such as women. We conducted a systematic review of evidence on FFS implementation to investigate whether FFS make a difference, to which farmers, and why or why not. We synthesised quantitative evidence on intervention effects using statistical meta‐analysis, and qualitative evidence on the barriers and enablers of effectiveness using a theory of change framework. The results of statistical meta‐analysis provide evidence that FFS are beneficial in improving intermediate outcomes relating to knowledge learned and adoption of beneficial practices, as well as final outcomes relating to agricultural production and farmers' incomes. The findings suggest this to be the case for FFS promoting integrated pest management (IPM) technology, as well as other techniques. However, the rigorous impact evaluation evidence base is small and there are no studies that we were able to identify as having a low risk of bias. There is no evidence that neighbouring non‐participant farmers benefit from diffusion of IPM knowledge from FFS participants. Therefore, they do not experience improvements in IPM adoption and agriculture outcomes. The evidence of positive effects on agricultural outcomes is largely limited to short‐term evaluations of pilot programmes. In the few examples where FFS have been scaled up, the evidence does not suggest they have been effective in improving agricultural outcomes among participating farmers or neighbouring non‐participants. Although empowerment is a major objective of many FFS, very few studies have collected information on this outcome in a rigorous manner. A few studies suggest farmers feel greater self‐confidence. What explains the lack of scalable effects among FFS participants, or diffusion of IPM practices among the community? FFS differ from standard agricultural extension interventions, which tend to focus on disseminating knowledge of more simple practices such as application of fertiliser and pesticides, or adoption of improved seeds. The experiential nature of the training, and the need for the benefits of the FFS technology to be observed, are barriers to spontaneous diffusion. Furthermore, the effectiveness of scaled‐up interventions has been hampered by problems in recruiting and training appropriate facilitators at scale. The review provides implications for policy, practice and research. Executive Summary BACKGROUND After almost three decades of decline in public support, agriculture is now back on the development agenda. Since the late 1980s, support to agriculture has shifted from top‐down approaches to those identifying technologies and methods of communicating technologies which are suitable to support farmers' livelihoods in a sustainable manner, including participatory approaches based on the notion of creating spaces for farmer self‐learning. One such approach is the farmer field school (FFS), an adult education intervention which uses intensive “discovery‐based” learning methods with the objectives of providing skills in such areas as integrated pest management (IPM) and empowering farmers and communities. FFS have been implemented in 90 countries worldwide, reaching an estimated 10‐15 million farmers. Farmer field schools may appear to be the latest tool, but what does the evidence say regarding their effectiveness? OBJECTIVES This systematic review synthesises evidence on interventions identified as “farmer field schools” conducted in low‐ and middle‐income countries. The review aims to provide answers to the following research questions: Review question (1): • a) What are the effects of farmer field schools on final outcomes such as yields, net revenues and farmer empowerment? • b) What are the effects of farmer field schools on intermediate outcomes such as knowledge and adoption of improved practices (e.g. reduced use of pesticides)? • c) What are the effects on outcomes for non‐participating neighbouring farmers living in the same communities as FFS farmers? Review question (2): What are the enablers of and barriers to FFS effectiveness, diffusion and sustainability? STUDY SELECTION CRITERIA Studies included in the review satisfied the following criteria. Eligible participants included farmers growing arable crops, living in low‐ or middle‐income countries at the time of the intervention. The review included those participating directly in the field school and also non‐participant neighbour farmers who may benefit through spillover effects or more formal dissemination methods. Eligible interventions were those identified as “farmer field schools,” regardless of the design or implementation, including FFS programmes providing training in IPM and other techniques. Studies combining FFS with other intervention components, such as input or marketing support, were also included. Comparisons eligible for the effectiveness review were farmers who received no intervention, or access to agricultural extension services from another source, including IPM (or equivalent) training. All outcomes reported were eligible for the review.primary Primary outcomes were agricultural outcomes, including yields and profits (net revenues). Secondary outcomes included other final outcomes such as environmental outcomes, health status and empowerment; and intermediate outcomes, including farmer knowledge and adoption of practices. Qualitative evidence on barriers to and enablers of effectiveness and sustainability were also included, including process and implementation information and measures of beneficiaries' attitudes and experiences with FFS. Eligible study designs for the effectiveness synthesis (review question 1) were measurable using counterfactual impact evaluations, including experimental or quasi‐experimental study designs and methods of analysis. Studies eligible for the synthesis of barriers and enablers (review question 2) were based on primary data collected from FFS participants, extension agents or experts, analysed using qualitative methods or descriptive statistics. The qualitative studies needed to report at least some information on the research question, procedures for collecting data, sampling and recruitment, and at least two sample characteristics. SEARCH STRATEGY The search included electronic academic databases, internet search engines, websites and theses, as well as handsearches of key journals and literature snowballing. Searches included general social science sources as well as agriculture subject‐specific sources of published and unpublished literature. All searches were updated in October 2012. The farmer field schools evaluation community has generated a large number of evaluations. We screened the titles and abstracts of over 28,000 papers, the majority of which were irrelevant to the topic. Four‐hundred‐sixty (460) relevant papers on FFS were assessed for inclusion based on full text. After the final screen by two authors, 134 quasi‐experimental studies comprising 92 distinct evaluations meeting the inclusion criteria were eligible for the review. The impact evaluations provide quantitative estimates of effects on outcomes for 71 FFS projects. However, only 15 of the impact evaluations meeting the inclusion criteria were judged to be of sufficient internal validity to make predictions for policy. The review also includes 20 qualitative evaluations meeting the inclusion criteria, which discuss the barriers to and enablers of change in 20 FFS projects. A portfolio review of 337 project documents was also conducted. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS Two independent reviewers assessed the full text papers against the inclusion criteria; discrepancies were resolved by consensus or by a third author if needed. Two reviewers extracted data from included studies. Quantitative impact evaluation studies were critically appraised according to the likely risk of bias according to threats to internal validity (causal identification), external validity (generalisability) and file‐drawer effects (publication bias). Qualitative evaluations were assessed according to adequacy of reporting, data collection, presentation, analysis and conclusions drawn. We used a hypothesised programme theory of change (White, 2009) as the framework for integrating the evidence. We collected data on programme design, implementation, targeting and contextual factors, and linked individual studies by programme in order to assess whether heterogeneous programme effects were correlated with study design, implementation and context. For the quantitative synthesis (review question 1), we extracted effect size estimates from included studies, calculating standard errors and 95 per cent confidence intervals using data provided in the studies, where possible. We used random effects meta‐analysis, estimating average effects of farmer field schools on the different outcomes, and examining heterogeneity. The results of the publication bias analysis suggested under‐reporting of small sample studies with negative or insignificant findings for studies reporting evidence on agricultural yields, which is evidence for possible publication bias. For the synthesis of qualitative evidence (review question 2), we used a thematic approach (Thomas & Harden, 2008), combining predetermined themes based on the links and assumptions in the theory of change model, as well as any other themes emerging from the detailed coding of the included studies. In the final stage of analysis, we used an iterated approach in which some effect moderators identified during the qualitative synthesis were tested in meta‐analysis and meta‐regression. RESULTS Review question (1) No studies with a low risk of bias were identified for the review of effects and only 15 (out of 92) quasi‐experimental studies were assessed as being of medium risk of bias and therefore policy‐actionable. The results of these medium‐risk‐of‐bias studies (reported in Summary of Findings Table 1) suggest farmer field schools impact positively on intermediate and final outcomes for participating farmers in the short to medium term. Findings for intermediate outcomes were as follows: • There was a significant increase of 0.21 standard deviations on knowledge about beneficial practices among farmer field school participants over comparison farmers (SMD=0.21, 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.07, 0.35; Q=5, Tau‐sq=0.008, I‐sq=55%; evidence from 3 studies). • There was a significant reduction in pesticide use by 23 per cent for IPM and IPPM FFS participants over comparison farmers (RR=0.77, 95% CI=0.61, 0.97; Q=40, Tau‐sq=0.07, I‐sq=83%; 8 studies). Effects on pesticide use were particularly large and consistent for cotton IPM projects in Asia. • There was a significant increase in indices of adoption of other beneficial practices by 0.22 standard deviations over comparison farmers (SMD=0.22, 95% CI=0.06, 0.38; Q=10, Tau‐sq=0.02, I‐sq=80%; 3 studies). For final outcomes, the findings were as follows: • A significant increase in agricultural yields was estimated among FFS participants, by 13 per cent over comparison farmers (RR=1.13, 95% CI=1.04, 1.22; Q=53, Tau‐sq=0.008, I‐sq=81%; 11 studies). • A significant increase in profits (net revenues) was estimated, by 19 per cent among FFS participants over comparison farmers (RR=1.19, 95% CI=1.11, 1.27; Q=1, Tau‐sq=0, I‐sq=0%; 2 studies). The increase in profits was higher for FFS projects which also included complementary interventions involving input or marketing support (RR=2.51, 95% CI=1.51, 4.16, Q=1, Tau‐sq=0, I‐sq=0%; 2 studies). • There was a 39 per cent reduction in estimated environmental impact quotient (EIQ) score as a result of reduced pesticide use among FFS farmers over comparison farmers (RR=0.61, 95% CI=0.48, 0.78; Q=3, Tau‐sq=0.01, I‐sq=33%; 3 studies). • We could not identify any studies which provided valid estimates of impacts on farmer health outcomes. • Very few studies assessed empowerment using quantitative counterfactual methods, and only one provided estimates of statistical precision. However, there is no evidence of effects on outcomes over the longer term (follow‐up surveys greater than two years after implementation) in programmes which have been scaled up nationwide. For IPM farmer field schools, there is no evidence that diffusion from FFS participants to non‐participating neighbour farmers usually happens: • Overall, studies found no significant change in knowledge among FFS neighbours over comparison farmers. There was also no evidence for improvements among neighbours on pesticide use, yields or environmental impact quotient. • When relatively better‐educated farmers are targeted to participate in the IPM field schools, diffusion may occur for simple practices (such as reduced pesticide use) and yields. However, even in a few cases where diffusion appeared to occur, the evidence does not suggest diffusion to non‐participants is sustained over time. Review question (2) Qualitative evaluations (reported in Summary of Findings Table 2) in the review helped us to understand the different types of farmer field schools implemented around the world, the reasons for heterogeneous impacts among FFS participants, and the limited diffusion to non‐participating neighbour farmers. FFS use discovery‐based learning methods which differ from agricultural extension interventions that tend to focus on disseminating knowledge of more simple practices, for instance application of fertiliser and pesticides, or adoption of improved seeds. However, there are several barriers to spontaneous diffusion of knowledge and practices. The FFS curriculum is complex and the training should be experience‐based, so that farmers are able to observe that FFS practices have a relative advantage over conventional farmer practices. Existing levels of social capital, the reach of social networks, and approaches to targeting FFS participants were found to be potentially important factors in influencing diffusion. More generally, the studies identify some of the more common problems in implementation, notably where a top‐down “transfer of technology” approach has been implemented for an intervention which is intended to be based on a “bottom‐up” participatory approach. All qualitative evaluations presented some evidence of use of triangulation to verify their findings, although most studies had weaknesses in reporting on sampling, analysis, and presentation of data, making quality appraisal of this evidence base challenging. IMPLICATIONS FOR POLICY AND PROGRAMMES Farmer field schools can have beneficial effects for participating farmers, in pilot programmes in the short term. The impacts on agricultural outcomes may be of substantial importance to farmers, in the region of a 10 per cent increase in yields and 20 per cent increase in profits (net revenues). The effects are particularly large when FFS are implemented alongside complementary upstream or downstream interventions (access to seeds and other inputs, assistance in marketing produce) for cash crops. However, the few studies of scaled‐up programmes measuring outcomes over the longer term (more than two years post‐training) do not find any evidence of effects of FFS. Farmers may also feel more confident, but again very few studies have assessed empowerment outcomes rigorously. There is little evidence of diffusion of improved practices or outcomes from FFS participants to non‐participating neighbour farmers. Field schools targeting more educated farmers may be better able to diffuse simple practices, such as on reduced pesticide use, than field schools that target less educated farmers. However, there is no evidence that any diffusion of practices is sustained over time, nor any evidence for adoption of more complex IPM practices via diffusion. As a method of rural adult education, FFS appear suited for gradual scale‐up provided there is a clear focus on ensuring local institutionalisation (i.e. favouring intensiveness of coverage in each community over geographical breadth of coverage). On the other hand, FFS seem unsuited to solve the problems of large‐scale extension. The approach may not be cost‐effective compared with agricultural extension in many contexts, except where existing farming practices are particularly damaging, for example due to overuse of pesticides. This is because of the highly intensive (and therefore relatively costly) nature of the training programme, the relative successes in targeting more educated farmers as compared with disadvantaged groups, and failures in promoting diffusion of IPM practices. Targeting FFS participants: Proponents of FFS have recommended targeting more highly educated farmers, those with greater land endowments, younger farmers and women, favouring those with relatively low opportunity costs of labour or farmers with relatively high pesticide costs. Problems were highlighted in targeting women who lived in household where they were not in a decision‐making position, and youth who were unable to dedicate sufficient time to the FFS plot or their fields. Where the aim is to include women and disadvantaged members of the community, implementers may need to tailor the intervention to enable their participation in the programme. The curriculum needs to be relevant and consistent with the needs and opportunities of women and the poor. Most obviously, in contexts where women are primarily responsible for growing subsistence crops, a curriculum that covers only commercial crops is unlikely to attract women participants. More generally, the curriculum and crops covered in FFS should also be adapted according to the local agricultural system and the needs of the farmers targeted by the programme. Curricula need to deal with the major challenges facing farmers. In most cases, these challenges will be multifaceted, highlighting the need to balance comprehensiveness with being able to cover all issues in sufficient depth to ensure appropriate learning. A cumulative approach over several seasons, including exchanges between field schools, may be preferable. FFS facilitators: The evidence also suggests that appropriate targeting and training of FFS facilitators is important. The theory of change suggests FFS should be delivered according to a participatory and discovery‐based approach to learning, including opportunities for farmers to experiment and observe new practices, particularly if farmers are to be empowered with lifelong skills capacity development. Attempts to target facilitators based on education or literacy levels may be less effective than targeting based on ability to communicate, and appropriate training which enables facilitators to use a bottom‐up approach. This is most obviously a barrier in scaled‐up programmes where FFS facilitators are recruited from extension staff who previously used more top‐down agricultural extension methods. Recruitment of facilitators should take into account personal attitude, maturity, literacy, leadership skills, knowledge in local language and experience with farming. In many contexts the gender of the facilitator should be carefully considered. Facilitators should have access to ongoing support and backstopping from supervisors and technical experts connected to local research centres. Regular monitoring of facilitators may help to identify schools where additional support is required. Complementary policies: Institutional actors involved in FFS should consider farmers' needs and interests in the design and implementation of the FFS programme. In some contexts stronger policies and regulatory measures may be necessary to counteract the activities of the pesticide industry, including the promotion and sale of pesticides by extension workers who are promoting FFS. New policies facilitating participatory agricultural extension approaches, replacing earlier extension policies aimed at promoting off‐the‐shelf technologies and input packages, may also be necessary. Local institutionalisation: Formal support and encouragement of FFS alumni, including technical assistance and backstopping, may be important for the sustainability of FFS practices and related activities. Given the skills‐based nature of the practices promoted in FFS, formal community‐building activities, support and successful attempts to institutionalise the approach, to encourage FFS graduates to train other farmers, are likely to be needed for any broader diffusion to non‐participating neighbour farmers, although the evidence base does not indicate that such attempts have been successful in the past. IMPLICATIONS FOR RESEARCH The majority of FFS impact evaluations (68 out of 92) use designs of questionable internal validity, and are therefore of limited value in determining whether farmer field schools have made a difference to outcomes. We were not able to locate any completed evaluations which used randomised assignment, an approach which is feasible for FFS. In three‐quarters of evaluations, no serious attempts were made to control for confounding through statistical matching or other statistical analysis, and in one‐third of cases statistical significance tests were not reported. The likely consequence, as indicated in the meta‐analysis, was the systematic overestimation of effects for all outcomes. The extent of resources that has been devoted to farmer field schools evaluations might therefore be usefully re‐allocated to conducting fewer but more rigorous impact evaluations, particularly those based on a solid counterfactual, with prospective cluster‐level assignment (randomised or otherwise) to allow measurement of community‐wide diffusion and to assess effects on agriculture and empowerment outcomes in the medium to longer term (three years or more). Evaluations should report information on both intervention design and implementation processes so that it is possible to assess whether programme causal chains break down because the intervention design is simply not appropriate for the context or because of poor implementation. Many qualitative evaluations need to report aspects of the research process in greater detail to allow users to assess their credibility and applicability. In particular, clear reporting on objectives, on methods of sampling, data collection and analysis should be provided. Greater use of structured abstracts will facilitate easier access to quantitative and especially qualitative research. Future studies should include data on views and experiences of FFS facilitators and agricultural extension workers. Summary of Findings Tables Summary of Findings Table 1: Effectiveness studies (review question 1) Outcomes Summary of findings No. of studies (participants) Relative effect size (95% CI) Percentage change compared with control group Quality assessment³ Statement Final outcomes ‐ all farmer field school participants (review question 1a) Yields (primary outcome) 11 (3,198) 1.13 RR¹ (1.04, 1.22) 13% increase in yields of FFS participants on average relative to comparison group (4%, 22%) ++oo Low Moderate risk of bias and publication bias strongly suspected FFS may increase yields of FFS participants by an average of 13% relative to comparison group, though there is notable variation across populations and contexts Net revenues (primary outcome) 2 (488) 1.19 RR (1.11, 1.27) 19% increase in net revenue of FFS participants on average relative to comparison group (11%, 27%) ++oo Low Moderate risk of bias and small number of studies FFS may increase net revenues (profits) of FFS participants by an average of 19% relative to comparison group Empowerment 1 (200) 2.13 RR (1.46, 3.12) FFS participants 1.13 more likely to report positive empowerment outcomes relative to comparison group (0.46, 2.12) +ooo Very low Moderate risk of bias, serious indirectness and very serious imprecision The evidence on the impact of FFS on empowerment for FFS participants is inconclusive Environmental outcomes (environmental impact quotient) 3 (1,149) 0.61 RR (0.48, 0.77) 39% reduction in environmental impact quotient of FFS participants on average relative to comparison group (52%, 23%) ++oo Low Moderate risk of bias and small number of studies FFS may reduce the environmental impact quotient by 39% on average relative to comparison group Intermediate outcomes ‐ farmer field school participants (review question 1b) Knowledge test scores 3 (426) 0.21 SMD² (0.07, 0.35) The knowledge test scores achieved by FFS participants are on average 0.21 standard deviations greater than in the comparison group (0.07, 0.35) ++oo Low Moderate risk of bias and small number of studies FFS may increase knowledge of FFS participants by 0.21 standard deviations on average relative to comparison group Pesticide use (IPM/IPPM FFS only) 9 (2,335) 0.83 RR(0.66, 1.04) 17% decrease in pesticide use by FFS participants on average relative to comparison group (‐34%, 4%) ++oo Low Moderate risk of bias and serious imprecision FFS may decrease pesticide use of IPM/IPPM FFS participants by 17% on average relative to comparison group though there is notable variation across populations and contexts Adoption of beneficial practices 3 (794) 0.22 SMD (0.06, 0.38) The number of practices adopted by FFS participants is on average 0.22 standard deviations greater than in the comparison group +ooo Very low Moderate risk of bias, serious inconsistency and small number of studies Evidence on the effect of FFS on the adoption of beneficial practices is inconclusive Diffusion to neighbour farmers (review question 1c) Pesticide demand neighbours (pesticide use, pesticide costs) 5 (1,115) 0.95 RR (0.64, 1.39) No statistically significant effect on pesticide use of FFS neighbours relative to comparison group ++oo Low Moderate risk of bias and serious imprecision FFS may not have any diffusion effect on pesticide use Yields 4 (986) 1.02 RR (0.97, 1.08) No statistically significant effect on the yields of FFS neighbours relative to comparison group ++oo Low Moderate risk of bias, serious inconsistency FFS may not have any diffusion effect on yields • Notes: 1/ RR = response ratio. 2/ SMD = standardised mean difference. • 3/ The rating guide used for the assessment of the quality of the evidence was adapted from GRADE and is available from • the authors. Source: authors based on GRADE. Summary of Findings Table 2: Barriers to and enablers of effects (review question 2) Outcomes No. of studies Statement Barriers to and enablers of knowledge acquisition 17 studies Barriers: FFS facilitators do not receive sufficient training and ongoing support (6 studies). Facilitators do not have enough farming experience and/or appropriate characteristics (2 studies). Lack of adequate and timely resources for FFS schools (3 studies). Farmers excluded due to restrictive targeting criteria or procedures (4 studies). Farmers unable to participate due to gender, cultural norms or poverty (7 studies). High levels of drop‐out due to incorrect expectations or lack of interest, access or time (7 studies). Training delivered in a top‐down manner, using transfer of technology approach (4 studies). Curriculum not appropriate or relevant to the local context (7 studies). Imbalance in relationship between farmers and facilitators (3 studies). Facilitators use national language, in which farmers are not fluent, or too many foreign and scientific terms (2 studies). Enablers: FFS facilitators have experience with farming, are literate and mature, and have a positive personal attitude and leadership skills (3 studies). Gender of facilitator acceptable to participants and their families (2 studies). Farmers motivated to learn and improve livelihoods (5 studies). Training delivered in a participatory, bottom‐up manner (9). Curriculum appropriate and relevant to the local context (7 studies). Facilitators use local language and concepts and metaphors common to farmers (2 studies). Barriers to and enablers of adoption 18 studies Barriers: Training delivered in a top‐down manner, using transfer of technology approach (4 studies). Curriculum is not appropriate and relevant to the local context (7 studies). Farmers do not observe benefits from FFS practices (2 studies). Practices too complex for farmers to implement (3 studies). Farmers lack access to inputs, capital and/or markets (5 studies). Low levels of social capital among participants (1 study). Enablers: Training delivered in a participatory, bottom‐up manner (9 studies). Curriculum is appropriate and relevant to the local context (7 studies). Farmers observe benefits of FFS practices (5 studies). High levels of social capital among participants and tradition of collective action (3 studies). Barriers to and enablers of effectiveness and sustainability 14 studies Barriers: Diverging institutional incentives and objectives (3 studies). Conflicting agricultural policies (2 studies). Institutional legacy from top‐down extension approaches (4 studies). Power of pesticide industry and continued links with the extension service (2 studies). Lack of technical assistance and backstopping from researchers and extensionists (4 studies). Enablers: Active follow‐up and continued support from implementing agency (11 studies). FFS groups with consistent membership, good leadership, collective goals and a supportive group environment (4 studies). Barriers to and enablers of diffusion of knowledge and practices 11 studies Barriers: Complexity and experiential nature of FFS learning (5 studies). Farmers unable to observe FFS practices (2 studies). Farmers are not convinced of the relative advantage of FFS practices (2 studies). Socioeconomic differences between FFS participants and non‐participants (1 study). Low levels of social capital and cohesion limiting communication (2 studies). Enablers: Concrete and relatively easy practices (2 studies). Farmers observe FFS practices (5 studies). Farmers perceive FFS practices to have relative advantage over existing practices (2 studies). High levels of social capital and social networks extending beyond FFS group (3 studies). Active promotion of FFS practices post‐graduation (1 study). Source: authors.
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Rice leaffolders Cnaphalocrocis medinalis and Marasmia spp. (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) are considered major pests in many Asian countries. Insecticide use against leaffolders is wide-spread, but may not be justified due to tolerance of the rice crop to leaffolder injury and a high level of natural biological control. This study was conducted to obtain more insight in the potential of indigenous natural enemies to suppress rice leaffolder populations and reduce the damage inflicted to the crop. The study started with a descriptive analysis of leaffolder population dynamics in Philippine rice fields, and then concentrated on experimental analysis of egg mortality and the impact of individual predator species. Models were used to integrate the experimental findings, to explain field observations, and to explore the consequences of varying biotic and abiotic conditions for leaffolder population dynamics and damage.Rice leaffolder populations in eight unsprayed rice crops were characterized by an egg peak at maximum tillering and a broad larval peak around the booting stage, with peak larval densities ranging from 0.2 to 2.0 per hill. Variation in survival from egg to larval stages between crops was not correlated with the level of egg parasitism, natural enemy abundance, or predator-prey ratios. High levels of N-fertilization resulted in a strong increase in leaffolder larval density and injury, due to a positive effect on egg recruitment and survival of medium-sized larvae. The increase in larval survival was associated with lower predator-prey ratios. Egg mortality in the field a veraged about 60%, and was mainly due to disappearance of eggs and to a lesser extent to parasitism by Trichogramma spp. Non-hatching was of minor importance. The level of egg disappearance was positively correlated with the densities of the predatory crickets Metioche vittaticollis and Anaxipha longipennis. Direct observations confirmed the major role of these crickets: in two crop seasons they were responsible for more than 90% of the observed egg predation. Minor predators were Micraspis sp., Ophionea nigrofasciata, and Conocephalus longipennis. The egg predation rate of the crickets in cages was described adequately with a linear functional response model, indicating that predation was limited only by the search rate. Increasing the predator density per cage led to a decrease in the egg predation rate per capita. Field testing of a model of predation of leaffolder eggs based on cage experiments showed that the observed trend in egg predation could be described as a function of cricket densities and crop leaf area. The evaluation also indicated that predator interference may limit the egg predation rate of the crickets, while the presence of alternative prey did not. A simulation study with a combined model of leaffolder population dynamics and rice crop growth highlighted the importance of natural enemies as well as crop growing conditions. The simulations indicated that larval densities as observed in the unsprayed fields would not cause significant yield loss in a wellfertilized crop. Yield losses simulated with an average leaffolder immigration pattern exceeded economic damage levels when no natural enemy action was included, while introduction of three field-observed natural mortality factors (egg predation, egg and larval parasitism) reduced losses to below these levels. Over their observed range in seasonal abundance, the predatory crickets could reduce leaffolder damage by 5 to 60% (average: 35%).The identification of the major egg predators and quantification of their impact can serve as a starting point for research on strategies to conserve natural enemies of rice leaffolders, and as inputs to IPM training programs to stimulate farmers to reduce insecticide sprays against rice leaffolder. The study also indicated the importance of optimization of nitrogen fertilization to avoid reliance on chemical control, by maximizing the positive effects on yield formation and tolerance to injury, while minimizing the leaffolder density response. For this purpose, a combined leaffolder-rice simulation model is a useful, integrative tool, to study how interaction between these mechanisms affects rice yield.
Chapter
The market value of pesticides used in rice was estimated to be U.S. 2.4 billion in 1988 ( cite > Woodburn, 1990 cite > ). Japan was the largest consumer, accounting for 59 percent of the market, followed by South Korea (10 percent) and China (6 percent). The Philippine market was about U.S.2.4 billion in 1988 (Woodburn, 1990). Japan was the largest consumer, accounting for 59 percent of the market, followed by South Korea (10 percent) and China (6 percent). The Philippine market was about U.S. 48 million in 1988, with insecticides and herbicides accounting for 58 percent and 35 percent, respectively.
Chapter
The key factor in sustained implementation of integrated pest management (IPM) in developing countries has been, and still is, motivation. Smith’s (1978) description of the typical “phases” of IPM development, based on experience with cotton since the 1950s, is proving to be an enduringly accurate description of human nature as a factor to contend with in crop protection. The cycle begins with overdependence on, and misuse of, a single pest control tactic—usually insecticides—such that pests evolve the ability to overcome it (Heinrichs, Chapter 16; Gallagher et al., Chapter 17). There ensues a “Crisis” or “Disaster Phase” of crop unprofitability or failure. The spectre of frightening economic and political losses spurs government to espouse and invest meaningfully in IPM and gets farmers’ attention. During the “IPM Phase” an array of tactics based on ecological crop protection principles—the use of economic threshold levels, regionwide fallow periods for the crop, and so on—are promulgated and applied. Then, after enjoyment of a period without pest control emergencies, a “Deterioration Phase” sets in. Policymakers and farmers are no longer motivated to stick to ecological principles, backsliding to routine pesticide applications that require less attention, effort, and management skill. IPM research and extension programs falter.
Article
The majority of pesticide applications by rice farmers in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam, and Leyte, Philippines, were insecticides. Farmers in Vietnam applied more insecticides per season (∼6.1 sprays) than Filipino farmers (∼2.6 sprays). About half of the insecticide sprays were organophosphates and the main chemicals were methyl parathion, monocrotophos, and methamidophos. About 22% and 17% of the chemicals in the Philippines and Vietnam, respectively, were classified as ‘extremely hazardous’ (Category la) by the WHO. Another 17% and 20% in the Philippines and Vietnam, respectively, were classified as ‘highly hazardous’ (Category Ib). High proportions of the sprays were targeted at leaf‐feeding insects which accounted for 42% and 28% of insecticide sprays in Vietnam and Philippines, respectively. In the Philippines, sprays against rice bugs accounted for 44% while in Vietnam, those against brown planthoppers accounted for 34%. Since research has shown that leaf feeder control generally does not increase yields, a large proportion of insecticides currently used may be unnecessary.
Article
Behavioral decision research: A constructive processing perspective
Article
Studies of business organizations reveal the importance of combining two elements for mobilizing and aligning action in large organizations: informed decision making and contingent incentives. A national development programme in Indonesia tested both elements under exceptionally demanding conditions. The Government of Indonesia ended its subsidy of agricultural pesticides in the late 1980s, and it sought to prepare its large but poorly educated farming population in the use of ecologically based integrated pest management (IPM) methods. With a staff of 2,000 trainers by the early 1990s and a curriculum emphasizing information analysis and management decisions, the Indonesian national IPM programme created a capacity to train as many as 50,000 farmers per growing season. Field studies, trainee surveys and other evidence reveal that, consistent with national programme objectives, (1) pesticide applications were reduced by more than 60 per cent; (2) pesticide use depended more on field decisions, less on prescriptions; (3) small landholders were as likely as large holders to master IPM techniques; (4) IPM-trained farmers experienced no loss in rice yield and significant savings in pesticide expense; (5) IPM-trained farmers sought to share the new information and skills with other farmers. Together, informed decision making and contingent incentives provided the organizational foundation for a sustainable national change in agricultural methods.
Chapter
This article described three heuristics that are employed in making judgements under uncertainty: (i) representativeness, which is usually employed when people are asked to judge the probability that an object or event A belongs to class or process B; (ii) availability of instances or scenarios, which is often employed when people are asked to assess the frequency of a class or the plausibility of a particular development; and (iii) adjustment from an anchor, which is usually employed in numerical prediction when a relevant value is available. These heuristics are highly economical and usually effective, but they lead to systematic and predictable errors. A better understanding of these heuristics and of the biases to which they lead could improve judgements and decisions in situations of uncertainty.
Article
Considers that intuitive predictions follow a judgmental heuristic-representativeness. By this heuristic, people predict the outcome that appears most representative of the evidence. Consequently, intuitive predictions are insensitive to the reliability of the evidence or to the prior probability of the outcome, in violation of the logic of statistical prediction. The hypothesis that people predict by representativeness was supported in a series of studies with both naive and sophisticated university students (N = 871). The ranking of outcomes by likelihood coincided with the ranking by representativeness, and Ss erroneously predicted rare events and extreme values if these happened to be representative. The experience of unjustified confidence in predictions and the prevalence of fallacious intuitions concerning statistical regression are traced to the representativeness heuristic.
Article
This article described three heuristics that are employed in making judgements under uncertainty: (i) representativeness, which is usually employed when people are asked to judge the probability that an object or event A belongs to class or process B; (ii) availability of instances or scenarios, which is often employed when people are asked to assess the frequency of a class or the plausibility of a particular development; and (iii) adjustment from an anchor, which is usually employed in numerical prediction when a relevant value is available. These heuristics are highly economical and usually effective, but they lead to systematic and predictable errors. A better understanding of these heuristics and of the biases to which they lead could improve judgements and decisions in situations of uncertainty.
Article
Presents a case study taken from irrigated rice farming in the Philippines where three pilot projects were selected as examples of the introduction of integrated pest management. Uses these and other data to derive a simple, decision-theoretic test model, from which inferences can be drawn regarding the optimum crop protection strategies for specific objectives and the benefit to be derived from different stages of improvement in information. -from Author
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