Diffusion Literature Review

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2.1 The Theoretical Framework
Technology adoption has been guided mainly by innovation-diffusion paradigm, economic constraint paradigm and adopter perception paradigm (Nyanga et al., 2011). According to Rogers (1995), diffusion theories have their origins in the explanation of the adoption of technological change by farmers. Rogers (1995) noted that diffusion theory is not a single all-encompassing theory, but several theoretical perspectives that relate to the overall concept of diffusion; it is therefore a meta-theory (Yates, 2001). Rogers (1995) identified four factors that influence adoption of innovations: The innovation itself, the communication channels used to spread information about the innovation, the
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Rogers (1983) made a distinction between adoption and diffusion. He defined diffusion (aggregate adoption) as the process by which a technology is communicated through certain channels over time among members of a social system (set of interrelated units that share common problems and are engaged in joint problem solving to accomplish a common goal. This definition recognize the following four elements: (1) the technology that represents the new idea, practice or object being diffused, (2) communication channels which represent the way information about the new technology flows from change agent (extension, technology suppliers) to final users or adopters (e.g. farmers), (3) the time period over which a social system adopts technology, and (4) the social system. Rogers (1983) then defined adoption as use or non-use of a new technology by a farmer at a given period of time. Feder et al. (1985) distinguished individual adoption (farm level) from aggregate adoption. He defined Individual adoption as the degree of use of a new technology (innovation) in a long-run equilibrium when the farmer has full information about the new technology and it’s potential. Aggregate adoption (diffusion) was defined as the process of spread of a technology within…show more content…
It also revealed the gaps that need to be addressed by research in order for full potentials of the technologies being promoted to be realised. In Uganda, despite the enormous support to extension system by government and private sector, the adoption of improved agricultural technologies and input use still remained generally low. For instance, only 6% of farmers in Uganda were using improved seeds in 2006, while a much lower proportion used inorganic fertilizers (UBOS, 2007). Even for farmers who initially had adopted improved agricultural technologies, the dropout rates have remained high. Kijima (2011) showed that about 50% of farmers who adopted the high yielding rice variety (NERICA) in Uganda in 2002 abandoned the variety within the first two years. Using a panel survey of 347 households, Kijima pointed to the relatively low profitability of rice in comparison to other agricultural products, distances to rice milling centres, and consequently higher costs of marketing as the reasons for the high dis-adoption rates. On the other hand, Sserunkuuma (2005), based on a survey of 450 households, examined the reasons for low adoption of maize varieties in Uganda and found that participation in agricultural extension programmes was a key determinant of adoption of maize varieties.

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