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von Hase, Fabian, 2013. Facilitating Conservation Agriculture in Namibia through understanding farmers’ planned behaviour and decision making. Second cycle, A2E. Alnarp: SLU, Dept. of People and Society



Subsistence agriculture in Northern Namibia has been unable to feed the population due to out-dated agricultural techniques and erratic rainfall patterns. However, a novel Conservation Agriculture (CA) technique has been developed and introduced in Namibia which significantly boosts yields and stabilises them against droughts and floods. However, at the end of 2011 only 800 farmers had adopted the method and so there is an urgent need for up-scaling. The purpose of this study was to understand adoption of CA by studying farmers’ socio-psychological motivation and decision making processes, and general aiding and hindering factors in order to inform NGO’s and government on what to consider in up-scaling CA. The study was based on the Theory of Planned Behaviour (Ajzen, 1991) and a Decision Making Process Model that was derived from Verbeke (2000) and Oehlmer et al. (1998). Fieldwork consisted of 20 interviews with CA farmers, non-CA farmers, extension officers, regional counsellors and tractor owners and was carried out in the North Central Regions of Namibia from January to March 2013. Purposive sampling and semi-structured interviews were employed and this was augmented with participant observations (Bernard, 2006). Transcribed interviews were coded both inductively and deductively and analysis was done by structuring themes along the theoretical background. It was found that attitudes towards CA were positive and thereby intentions to adopt it were strong among farmers; this was due to easier farming with higher yields and income returns and good social acceptability. However, the lack and tardiness of land preparation services in terms of ripping the soil curtailed farmers’ actual capacity to implement CA. The decision to adopt CA was often taken immediately, based on better yields and most importantly on seeing CA in someone else’s field. Aiding the uptake of CA was a strong interest of all stakeholders and positive policy and political environments. The main hindering factor was the lack of land preparation service provision by government and the private sector. However, it was found that good opportunities exist for provision of land preparation services by the private sector but not government with its currently ineffective administrative structure. The study concluded that farmers had strong intentions to adopt CA and easily decided to try CA, but that the lack of land preparation was severely hindering wider-scale uptake. Therefore this study recommends NGO’s and government to support the establishment of private land preparation enterprises through business information provision and clarification of government strategies so that they aid rather than hinder such establishment.

Main title:Facilitating Conservation Agriculture in Namibia through understanding farmers’ planned behaviour and decision making
Authors:von Hase, Fabian
Supervisor:Hunter, Erik and Johansson, Marie
Examiner:Ekelund Axelsson, Lena
Series:Självständigt arbete vid LTJ-fakulteten, SLU
Volume/Sequential designation:UNSPECIFIED
Year of Publication:2013
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:LM005 Agroecology - Master's programme 120 HEC
Supervising department:(LTJ, LTV) > Dept. of People and Society
Keywords:Namibia, Conservation Agriculture, Theory of Planned Behaviour, Farmer Decision Making, Adoption, Ripping, Subsistence
Permanent URL:
Subject. Use of subject categories until 2023-04-30.:Agricultural research
Agricultural economics and policies
Deposited On:19 Sep 2013 10:09
Metadata Last Modified:19 Sep 2013 10:09

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