Testing Mobile-Based Community Agricultural Extension

by | August 9, 2011
Category: Blog

The ict4ag pilot project underway in Kisongo, Tanzania will be used to answer the following research questions:

Data and Objectives
The AfSIS ict4ag data collection tool examines the relationship between agricultural yields and household factor endowments (land, labor and capital), illustrated in the below diagram. Used as a complement to the AfSIS digital soil mapping, the survey tool will specifically consider the following variables:

The project has targeted the following objectives/goals based on the above information:

Survey Design and Principles
The universality and straightforward design of the survey will allow many organizations throughout Africa to adopt this tool and make the resulting data accessible and usable. To this end, the survey tool includes a modular design of six sections: household information, farmer information, agricultural information, land ownership, land use and agricultural activities, tree planting, and livestock.

The design follows the below principles:

Principle Explanation
Short and focused The sampling procedure is designed to last no more than one hour from greeting to goodbye. The survey should take no longer than 30 minutes with additional time allotted for greetings, introductions, and, significantly, the area measurement of each farmer’s largest plot.
Broadly applicable The survey language and focus is not regionalized or localized. All questions should be applicable (once translated) and relevant in any agricultural context world-wide.
Easy to use The tool is built to run on Open Data Kit (ODK). An ODK-based survey can run on nearly any Android phone or tablet, giving organizations the flexibility to choose from a broad range of devices based on availability, budget, hardware specifications, and more.The tool is packaged with comprehensive supporting materials culled from our experiences piloting the tools and the observations of many others who have implemented ODK survey over the past 3 years. Included in this documentation is:

  • Implementation guidelines
  • Enumerator training suggestions
  • A dictionary of terms used so that translations of the survey remain faithful to the original and produce comparable data.
  • Guidelines for uploading, visualizing, and analyzing data uploaded to the internet

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