Full Length Research Paper
Agriculture is the mainstay of the Ethiopian economy. However, the growth of the sector is constrained by different factors. Low level of technology development, inefficient technology dissemination, low utilization of improved production inputs and shortage of research proven production practices are among the most important factors hindering the growth of the sector. The objective of this study was, therefore, to assess the status of the current agricultural knowledge and technology transfer systems. For this purpose, a combined effort of literature study, expert elicitation and questionnaire based survey were carried out. The results of the study showed that a multitude of factors are constraining the system in the area. Limited economic capacity and awareness of farmers, lack of motivation of stakeholders, lack of motivation and knowledge level of development agents to support the transfer system are within the limiting factors. Weak linkage amongst the concerned actors, negligence of farmers’ indigenous knowledge, and resistance of farmers to newly introduced technologies are also among the main factors hindering the efficiency of the system in their respective orders. Based on the findings of this study, it can be concluded that practicing participatory research approach, capacity building training, and mobilization of farmers are in urgent need for improving the efficiency of the transfer systems. Equipping with knowledge and skill and establishing a motivation scheme for development agents also a central solution to improve the systems. On top of this, timely dissemination of agricultural technologies, and information considering farmers indigenous knowledge needs to get due attention so as to improve agricultural knowledge-information and technology transfer system as well as smallholders’ livelihood.
Key words: Agricultural information, agricultural technology, Southern Ethiopia, technology and knowledge transfer.
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