Climate Smart Agriculture Sourcebook

Enhancing capacities for a country-owned transition towards CSA

Enabling Frameworks

The African Farm Radio Research Initiative

Farm Radio International is a Canadian registered charity that combines radio with other information and communications technologies to serve smallholder farmers across Africa. It provides information on low-cost methods to improve food security to 360 radio stations across 39 countries. A recent study assessed the knowledge, attitudes and practices (i.e. behavioural changes) of farmers living in 90 communities in 5 countries (Ghana, Malawi, Mali, Uganda and the United Republic of Tanzania). The study looked at specific agricultural improvements, including sustainable agricultural practices, that had been featured on participatory and interactive radio campaigns. It found that when agricultural producers were actively involved in these radio campaigns, more farmers tested and adopted new practices than when more traditional top-down, externally driven radio campaigns were carried out. One in five farmers who listened to the participatory and interactive radio campaigns adopted the agricultural innovation – an adoption rate five times higher than for farmers not exposed to the radio programme. The cost of a participatory and interactive radio campaigns amounts to pennies per farmer reached, making it a cost-effective information dissemination strategy.

Source: Farm Radio International, 2011