“Video-Mediated Farmer-to-Farmer Learning for Sustainable Agriculture”

In October of 2011, the organization Agro-Insight conducted a study prompted by The Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS), the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative (SAI) Platform, & the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) to identify the recipe for success in common or open exchange video platforms for farmers in developing countries. The study found that 8 in 10 respondents had, indeed, used the Internet to find and learn from agricultural videos. The 2 in 10 that had not done so struggled with A) successfully navigating the WWW, B) finding videos pertaining to relevant information, or B) finding videos in the appropriate language. Thus, 85% of the respondents asserted that accessibility of videos in local languages is “very important.” Beyond that, videos in local languages, but of poor quality, were not preferred to high quality videos made in foreign languages & translated into local languages. Farmers indicated the need for information regarding “crops and trees, water management, plant health, soil health, and farmers’ organizations.” If anything can be said for these results, it is that ICT4D must be pertinent to local needs and customs in order to be successful.

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2 responses to ““Video-Mediated Farmer-to-Farmer Learning for Sustainable Agriculture”

  • brookekania

    I found it pretty interesting and surprising that most farmers would rather have poor quality videos that were not translated to high quality videos that were, especially when the video is about something like agriculture. With a video on agriculture, I would think that watching what the farmer is doing would be much more helpful than listening to what the farmer has to say about farming. However, I do understand that it is probably more appealing to watch something that is more familiar to you (aka in your own language). But, since this is virtually impossible because there are so many different languages and dialects of those languages, maybe videos can start being produced that do not have any dialogue at all (and instead have everything explained through pictures or motions or whatever) so that when farmers of different languages watch them to learn about agriculture, none of them feel alienated because the video is in another language or has been translated.

  • mkenned1

    The use of how-to videos is a great method to provide information on agricultural techniques. These can be applied from everything to fertilizer application to animal husbandry techniques. In response to the problems associated with the language barriers it would make sense to me to see a regional effort to provide videos. A regional how-to video would not only be in the same or similar language, but would illustrate techniques relative to the area. There are organizations, such as ECHO (http://www.echonet.org/) that provide agricultural information to fight hunger world wide. Groups like this could provide the resources needed to allow the creation and distribution of how-to videos for agricultural development.

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