The partial or complete failure of agricultural development programs in developing countries is often due to the lack of understanding by decision makers at all levels of the marketing links. Marketing is often conceptualized and understood only as a process of assembling produce in rural or wholesale markets. Other aspects and roles of marketing mainly as incentives for production are often not well understood. Thus, the process of improving development policies often depends on trial and error, and can be generally enhanced with more accurate information. On the other hand, notions about marketing that are wrong or based on half-truths are accumulated over the years and passed on from generation to generation as facts. The lack of market research results and information can be a major problem facing the augmentation of marketing efficiency because poor information increases market imperfection and results in inefficient and ineffective policies. The rapid growth in agricultural production and increased food system specialization in developing countries increases the demand for a more efficient marketing system. Bonnen has observed that the need for information increases with development and industrialization. Development leads to a specialization of functions and organization, which greatly increases the need for coordination and, thus, the social returns and demands for information. Development and industrialization, along with the high degree of uncertainty in the agricultural sector, increases the complexity of problems, required analysis and analytical procedures which increases the demand for information. Thus, it becomes necessary to establish a marketing information system (MIS) with the ability and qualified staff to collect and analyze data to derive useful information that can be used to formulate sound recommendations to policy makers. MIS's are designed and operated to help either public or private decision makers or both. In the context of food and agricultural systems in developing countries, private decision makers need different kinds of information, depending on the kind of decision to be made. Farmers need information to deal with various problems confronting their farm operations: they need to decide what to produce and how much, and where to market in order to maximize their profits. Market intermediaries, like middlemen and commission agents, need information to divert supplies from one market to another and to adjust their services and selling practices in order to maximize their returns. In addition, exporters need information about both domestic and foreign markets in order to decide where to buy and sell. Governments often find it necessary to investigate and monitor the behavior of market participants in order to take action whenever it is necessary either to make corrections or to administer market facilitating policies and regulations. The focus of this paper is descriptive--describing from reviews of the literature the nature of market information, the design of information systems and the process of managing the flow of information. The goal is to shed more light on the likely problems facing decision makers in Jordan in the process of designing an improved marketing information system. The first section is an overview, offering background information; the second focus on the nature of information; the third section discusses key features of the design of an electronic information system; and the last section focuses on policy implications and recommendations.

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Graduate Research Master's Degree Plan B Papers

 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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