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Title:Farmer know-how and communication for technology transfer: CTTA in Niger
Authors:McCorkle, Constance M.ISNI
McClure, Gail D.ISNI
Book title:The cultural dimension of development: indigenous knowledge systems
Geographic term:Niger
Subjects:agricultural technology
indigenous technology
Abstract:The Communications for Technology Transfer in Agriculture Program (CTTA) uses a communication model for technology transfer that makes farmers the focal point of agricultural research, development and extension (RD&E). This article concentrates on a CTTA study carried out in Niger which addressed two basic questions: How can a better understanding of local agricultural experimentation, innovation, and communication help make research and extension strategies more responsive to farmers' needs and capabilities? How can such improved strategies enhance the quantity and quality of farmers' own agricultural knowledge? To answer these questions, a CTTA research team conducted both sondeo-type surveys and in-depth research among Mawri and Zarma farmers in southern Niger's Niamey and Dosso departments in May 1988. One of the major outcomes was the compilation of twenty 'mini-case studies' documenting local farmers' experimentation with adaptation, and adoption (or rejection) of agricultural technologies that were new to them. In the overwhelming majority of cases, the formal RD&E system in Niger had played little or no direct role in these indigenous processes. The article ends with recommendations for improving communication between farmers and researchers/extensionists. Notes, ref.