Technology Adoption and Economic Development: Trajectories within the African Agricultural Industry

Technology Adoption and Economic Development: Trajectories within the African Agricultural Industry

Taiwo E. Mafimisebi (Federal University of Technology, Nigeria)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0882-5.ch104
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Abstract

Africa’s economic development will result from conscious efforts directed towards diversification and increased productivity in its low-performing agricultural sector. Technology development, transfer and uptake, which are low for now, are indispensible necessities in this respect. The purpose of this chapter is to review the characteristics, importance, constraints and technology adoption process of African agriculture to identify factors that enhance or hinder technology uptake. This is with a view to isolating lessons for developers or packagers of new agricultural or other technologies for Africa, especially nanotechnology and microelectronics which are evolving and transformational. The attributes of technologies that have made desired impact in African agriculture included cheapness, simplicity, observability, visibility of results, usefulness, compatibility with existing technologies and farm- or farmer-specific socio-economic or socio-cultural conditions. Case studies of the welfare-enhancing impacts of adopted agricultural technologies were examined under use of fertilizers, improved varieties and biotechnology. Useful lessons for development and transfer of nanotechnology and micro-electronics to Africa were highlighted.

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