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Title: Innovation system actors' attitudes towards the use and effectiveness of participatory approaches : a case of research and extension systems in Kenya
Author: Mose, George Nyarigoti
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2013
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Research and extension systems in sub-Sahara African countries, including Kenya, have a major challenge of tailoring their services to address the needs of resource poor small holder famers. Actors involved in rural development consider participation important not only as a way of improving farm productivity and meeting farmers' real needs, but also in empowering them to play a much greater role in addressing their own needs. However, despite 'participation' being in use for several years now, its interpretation and implementation still differs across organisations and innovation system actors. Further, participation has not always led to the expected benefits, particularly in government organisations. Key to participation are the behaviours and actions of government staff who interact with farmers directly. However, it has been claimed that public research and extension organisations and their staff have not always 'bought into' 'participation' in practice. Instead, they have continued to implement top-down and technology focused behaviours but which they label as 'participatory'. This research therefore explored public research and extension professionals' attitudes and behaviours towards the use of pro poor participatory approaches and methods targeting small holder poor farmers. The study focused on (1) the roles, practices and behaviour of agricultural professionals and (2) the institutional factors and processes that constrain or favour pro-poor participatory technology development and transfer. A socio-psychological theoretical framework, the theory of planned behaviour (IPB) framework combined with qualitative participatory tools, was used in the study. The study adopted mixed method research design to explore practices, attitudes and behaviours of research and extension system actors and the underlying issues that relate to the use of the Pro-poor Approaches and Methods (PPMs). The main TPB components including attitudes; subjective norms and perceived behavioural control were evaluated. An additional variable, the self identity of the innovation system actors in relation to pro poor participatory extension approaches was included. The data for the two sets of respondents, (research scientists and extension professionals), were analysed separately. The study involved four different stages for each of the two categories of actors. The first two stages followed TPB guidelines that included elicitation and survey phases covering a total of 185extension professionals and research scientists.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available