Requirements specification for mobile software for e-commerce and its adoption by small organic farmers in Costa Rica

Jose Francisco Aguilar


Rural development can be favoured not only with the development of new and sustainable agricultural practices, but also with information communication technology applications. Requirements analysis and specification for mobile software has been recognized as a key factor for economic success and as a support to E-commerce. With the aim to develop a mobile application for a small group of farmers, a partnership among the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG), the Institute Costa Rican Electricity, Telecommunications (ICE), the University of Costa Rica (UCR), and a group of organic farmers was established. Here we describe the different processes and the connection between the user needs and the software development team. After defining the specific roles of each organization, we provided especial consideration for the adoption phase, due to digital divide of the target group of small organic farmers. The analysis conducted concluded that the creation of the mobile application had both benefits and challenges. On one hand, it represented an important first step into the world of Information Communication Technology (ICT) applied to organic farming activities in Costa Rica that can surely boost e-commerce. The needs were potentially solved by the inherent advantages of ICT in an increasingly competitive world, with equity of opportunities, and the important challenge to preserve the biodiversity with sustainable agricultural practices. The specifications of mobile software requirements established in this project were supported by considerations of adoption and of collaboration, cooperation and communication strategies among key stakeholders to follow-up, the implementation phase and to assure success.

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DOI: 10.17700/jai.2015.6.4.202

Journal of Agricultural Informatics