Technology Transfer and Adoption for Smallholder Climate Change Adaptation: Opportunities and Challenges

Climate and Development, June 2019

Posted: 8 Aug 2020

See all articles by Laura Kuhl

Laura Kuhl

Northeastern University - School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs

Date Written: 2019

Abstract

Technologies help build farmer resilience to climate change, but the relationships among technology transfer, adoption, vulnerability, and resilience are not well-understood. This paper empirically examines the technology transfer process for smallholder farmers in Honduras from an adaptation perspective. It addresses two questions:

(1) How does technology transfer contribute to pathways to resilience for smallholder farmers?

(2) What challenges do these efforts face in meeting diverse farmer needs and overcoming barriers to technology adoption by the most vulnerable to climate change?

These questions are analysed in the context of United States government’s Feed the Future initiative. Interviews with smallholder farmers were conducted regarding experiences with technology transfer, adoption choices, and perceptions of climate change. The study found that while adoption rates were high overall, the pace of adoption was still slow, demonstrating a tension between the urgency of climate change and the pace of smallholder adoption. The study found that many technologies increase resilience but may not always be adaptive in the long-term, and that significant resources are needed to successfully transfer technologies to smallholder farmers. This study provides evidence of ways agricultural technology projects contribute to pathways to resilience and demonstrates barriers to their success.

Keywords: Climate Adaptation, Resilience, Honduras, Technology Adoption, Technology Transfer, Agriculture

Suggested Citation

Kuhl, Laura, Technology Transfer and Adoption for Smallholder Climate Change Adaptation: Opportunities and Challenges (2019). Climate and Development, June 2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3648231

Laura Kuhl (Contact Author)

Northeastern University - School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs ( email )

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360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
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