Can simple seed fairs lead to increased adoption of modern seed varieties?

Last registered on July 21, 2014

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Can simple seed fairs lead to increased adoption of modern seed varieties?
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0000449
Initial registration date
July 21, 2014

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
July 21, 2014, 7:45 PM EDT

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

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
Tufts University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
UC Berkeley
PI Affiliation
UC Berkeley

Additional Trial Information

Status
On going
Start date
2014-05-01
End date
2016-07-01
Secondary IDs
Abstract
In the absence of formal markets for new seed varieties, farmer-to-farmer exchanges are a popular mechanism for diffusing these technologies. This approach implicitly relies on exchange via social networks. But, recent work has found that networks perform quite poorly at diffusing new seed varieties. Only 7% of farmers adopt from other farmers in their village. This compares to 40% when preferences were revealed via door-to-door sales (Emerick, 2013). These results suggest that the adoption gap – through the informal channel of social networks – is not demand driven. Rather, the existing sources of supply have not been sufficient to meet demand, or have not reached farmers with an effective demand for the new technology. In this study we ask whether coordination can explain the failure of informal exchange to efficiently allocate new seeds. We do this by testing the effectiveness of NGO-supported seed fairs on adoption. These events serve to solve coordination problems by simply bringing together original cultivators with potential adopters.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Emerick, Kyle, Alain de Janvry and Elisabeth Sadoulet. 2014. "Can simple seed fairs lead to increased adoption of modern seed varieties?." AEA RCT Registry. July 21. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.449
Former Citation
Emerick, Kyle, Alain de Janvry and Elisabeth Sadoulet. 2014. "Can simple seed fairs lead to increased adoption of modern seed varieties?." AEA RCT Registry. July 21. https://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/449/history/2188
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2014-05-01
Intervention End Date
2016-07-01

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Adoption (0/1) at the individual level
Adoption (hectares cultivated at the village level, collected with GIS)
Knowledge of Swarna-Sub1 (short "exam" at follow-up)
Characteristics of first year adopters (size, education, cognitive ability, progressiveness, reputation as quality seed producer, flood severity of land)
Characteristics of second year adopters (similar to first year adopters)
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
In May 2014, 25 kilograms of Swarna-Sub1 (a new flood-tolerant rice variety) were distributed in 100 villages in the flood-prone district Balasore. The mechanism for distribution was randomized across three possibilities:
1) Seeds given at a participatory village meeting
2) Seeds allocated to the local Self Help Group (women's group)
3) Seeds allocated to a local political official (ward member) for allocation to villagers

A further intervention will take place in March 2014. Farmer field days will be carried out in 50 of the villages. Farmers will be invited to the fields of original cultivators in order to increase awareness. Seed fairs will be organized in the remaining 50 villages in order to solve any coordination problems that may exist.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by random number generator in Stata
Randomization Unit
Randomization at the village level
Was the treatment clustered?
Yes

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
100 villages
Sample size: planned number of observations
100 villages in village level analysis, 1000 farmers in farmer-level analysis
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
June 2014: 33 villages in SHG group, 33 in Village meeting, and 34 in Ward Member
September 2014: 50 villages for farmer field days
March 2015: 50 villages for seed fairs
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
UC Berkeley
IRB Approval Date
2014-04-16
IRB Approval Number
2013-12-5863

Post-Trial

Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Intervention

Is the intervention completed?
No
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