Information Networks among Women and Men and the Demand for an Agricultural Technology in India

Although there is ample evidence of differences in how and where men and women acquire information, most research on learning household decision-making only considers access to information for a single, typically male, household head. This assumption is problematic in developing-country agriculture, where women play a fundamental role in farming. Using gender-disaggregated social network data from Uttar Pradesh, India, we analyze agricultural information networks among men and women.We test for gender-specific network effects on demand for laser land leveling—a resource-conserving technology—using data from a field experiment that combines a BDM auction with a lottery. We find that factors determining male and female links are similar, although there is little overlap between male and female networks. We also find evidence of female network effects on household technology demand, although male network effects are clearly stronger. Results indicate that extension services can better leverage female networks to promote new technologies.

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Conference Paper/ Presentation
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JEL Codes:
D80; Q12; Q16

 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-23

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