It’s Showtime! Improving Agricultural Productivity through TV Programming and Improved Input Access

Last registered on December 06, 2023


Trial Information

General Information

It’s Showtime! Improving Agricultural Productivity through TV Programming and Improved Input Access
Initial registration date
December 04, 2023

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
December 06, 2023, 9:02 AM EST

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.


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Primary Investigator

University of California, Santa Cruz

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Indian School of Business
PI Affiliation
PI Affiliation

Additional Trial Information

On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Television is a powerful tool to scale ‘edutainment’ - information that is both educational and entertaining. One such form of information is agricultural information, but there is limited rigorous evidence on the effect of extension delivered via television on agricultural outcomes, such as investment or productivity. Moreover, while television can provide easy access to information, its impact on agricultural investment may be constrained by other barriers, such as market access. We implement a cross-randomized experiment to simultaneously address information and market access constraints. We will evaluate a new farm makeover show broadcast on national TV in Zambia called “Munda Make Over”, modeled after the popular Kenyan show “Shamba Shape Up”. The show is similar to home makeover shows in developed countries, featuring visits by an expert who tours the farm, points out areas for improvement, and implements their advice, with segments dedicated to gender issues interspersed throughout the season. To address market access, we simultaneously cross-randomize “road shows”, locally-held events in which providers make their products and services available for sale closer to where farmers live, addressing barriers to market access. The road show will feature inputs such as seeds of improved, drought-resistant varieties, or other relevant inputs. MMO partners may also use the road shows to provide other products and services designed for smallholder farmers, for instance, agricultural credit or crop insurance.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Aggarwal, Shilpa et al. 2023. "It’s Showtime! Improving Agricultural Productivity through TV Programming and Improved Input Access." AEA RCT Registry. December 06.
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details


We will run an RCT in Zambia in which we simultaneously provide farmers with agricultural information and access to inputs. Agricultural information will be provided through the TV show, with farmers in the treatment arm being shown the show via screenings in local villages. Households with TVs will also be encouraged to watch the show on their own, and reminded via text message. In addition, households with smartphone access will be sent YouTube links to the show. Access to inputs will be provided through “roadshows”, in which input and service providers will offer their products for sale at accessible locations in the vicinity of study villages.

We will rely on a 2 by 2 cross-randomized study design, for a total of four treatment arms, with the village as the unit of randomization. To implement the roadshow treatment, we need large enough numbers of participants to make participation worthwhile for the private sector. We will therefore identify accessible locations among a given cluster of roughly 8 study villages and invite the 4 in the treatment group to attend the road show. Specifically, we will randomly select the administrative unit of "camp" to create these clusters.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
agricultural knowledge, agricultural practices, input adoption
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
yield, women's empowerment
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Yields will be measured from data on total production and acreage cultivated. Women's empowerment will be measured using modules from the Project-Level Women's Empowerment in Agriculture Index (Pro-WEAI)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We will identify 160 villages in 5 districts in Eastern and Central provinces in Zambia. We will randomize these villages into one of the 4 treatment groups (information only, market access only, information + market access, and control), stratified by district.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization will be done in office by computer
Randomization Unit
The market access and information interventions will be randomized at the village level.
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
160 villages
Sample size: planned number of observations
We plan on 10-16 surveys per village, i.e. 1600-2560 surveys total.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
40 villages in each treatment group (market access + information, information only, market access only, control)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
International Food Policy Research Institute IRB
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
IRB Name
ERES Converge
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number