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Credit Constraints and the Adoption of a Multi-layered Farming Model
Last registered on March 31, 2019

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
Credit Constraints and the Adoption of a Multi-layered Farming Model
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0004059
Initial registration date
March 26, 2019
Last updated
March 31, 2019 11:22 PM EDT
Location(s)
Region
Primary Investigator
Affiliation
University of Edinburgh
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
University of Edinburgh
Additional Trial Information
Status
On going
Start date
2018-12-15
End date
2019-12-31
Secondary IDs
Abstract
This study aims to investigate whether the availability of micro-finance loans increases the adoption of an innovative, multi-layered farming model in northern India. The technology in question enables small vegetable growers to plant two different crops simultaneously, via the use of an overground structure. We work with a local NGO to provide informational and technical assistance to all participating households, while randomizing the availability and interest rate of micro-finance loan products.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Citation
Bai, Liang and Camille Boudot. 2019. "Credit Constraints and the Adoption of a Multi-layered Farming Model." AEA RCT Registry. March 31. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.4059-1.0.
Former Citation
Bai, Liang, Liang Bai and Camille Boudot. 2019. "Credit Constraints and the Adoption of a Multi-layered Farming Model." AEA RCT Registry. March 31. http://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/4059/history/44435.
Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
Our interventions are a standard micro-finance joint liability group loan product, as marketed by a local MFI, coupled with an interest rate rebate. Depending on the treatment group, the rebate is either unconditional or conditional on adoption of the farming model.
Intervention Start Date
2019-01-14
Intervention End Date
2019-03-30
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Our key outcome is the adoption rate of the multi-layered farming model.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
We also plan to examine potential heterogeneous treatment effects along the following dimensions: (i) expected distribution of net returns to adoption, (ii) extent to which the household is credit constrained, (iii) risk preferences, and (iv) time preferences.
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Treatment Arm 1: This group will receive informational and technical assistance from our NGO partners. This includes an initial orientation meeting, a series of video information sessions, the setting up of a demonstration plot, and guidance throughout the growing season.

Treatment Arm 2: In addition to T1, this group will be offered a standard micro-finance loan product from a local MFI. It is a joint liability group loan, with a minimum of 10 members per group. The total amount disbursed is Rs. 14,750, to be repaid in fortnightly instalments over 14 months. The amount is designed to cover all of the required expenditures related to adopting the farming model (i.e. cost of building the structure, and purchasing the relevant seeds). The total interest amount is Rs. 2,050, or equivalent to a flat interest rate of 13.89%.

Treatment Arm 3: In addition to T2, this group will receive an unconditional interest rate rebate if they decide to take out a loan. The rebate amount covers half of the interest payments, thereby reducing the interest rate on the loan to approximately 7%. The rebate will be disbursed in equal fortnightly instalments of Rs. 40 over the repayment period by our study staff.

Treatment Arm 4: This group is identical to T3, except the interest rate rebate will be conditional on the monitored adoption of the farming model. Adoption will be monitored by study staff based on the following criteria: (a) building of the overground structure; (b) planting of a ground-cover and above-cover crop, and (c) planting in both the first and second growing cycles.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer
Randomization Unit
Gram Panchayat
Was the treatment clustered?
Yes
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
40 Gram Panchayats
Sample size: planned number of observations
4,000 households (100 households per GP)
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
T1 (technical assistance only): 9 GPs;
T2 (technical assistance + MFI loan): 11 GPs;
T3 (technical assistance + MFI loan + unconditional interest rate rebate): 9 GPs;
T4 (technical assistance + MFI loan + conditional interest rate rebate): 11 GPs.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
University of Edinburgh School of Economics Research Ethics Committee
IRB Approval Date
2018-12-10
IRB Approval Number
N/A
Post-Trial
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Intervention
Is the intervention completed?
No
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
No
Program Files
Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)
REPORTS & OTHER MATERIALS