Solutions to Identified Knowledge & Information Gaps amongst Farmers in Embu, Kenya
Kavita, Nester Muthoni

Information needs and information seeking behaviour of the farming community in Embu was investigated. Farmer interviews were conducted in three divisions of Embu County namely, Manyatta, Nembure and Central. Area (cluster) and systematic sampling procedures were used to interview 210 farmers, coupled with 5 Focus Group Discussions (FGDs). Purposive sampling was used to identify the key informants who included the agricultural extension personnel, researchers, information professionals, planners and policy makers. The study was informed by Diffusion Of Innovations (DOI) theory by Rogers. The SPSS data analysis software was used for data analysis. The findings reveal inadequacy in meeting of farmers’ agricultural information needs. Agricultural information infrastructure is fragmented and not co-ordinated leading to duplication of efforts. Farmers are highly receptive to innovations and use of ICTs. 76.2% of farmers indicated the radio as a channel of communication, 67.2% face to face, 61% field demonstrations, 56.3% mobile phones and 43.8% Print media.A Framework for ICT Based Telecentres for the farming community is proposed and a co-ordinated Regional and National Agricultural Knowledge and Innovation Systems (AKIS) recommended.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jlis.v6n1a3