Farmers’ usage of information and communication technologies for integrated farm management: An analytical study focusing on rural households of Bangladesh
Farmers’ usage of information and communication technologies for integrated farm management in Bangladesh
Keywords:Information sources, access, economic incentives, farm management, Bangladesh
Agricultural farming consists of multiple components and information related to farm management is one of the crucial factors. Information and communication technologies (ICTs) provide reliable and need based information in an effective way. This study focuses on investigating the extent of ICTs usage for integrated farm management and to clarify the underlying factors in Gauripur upazila (sub-district) under Mymensingh district of Bangladesh. To achieve the purpose of the study, data were collected from 75 randomly sampled farmers using structured questionnaire. Both descriptive and inferential statistical techniques were applied to obtain the findings of the study. The findings of the study clearly revealed that the highest proportion of the farmers (46%) had the tendency to use ICTs to a moderate extent. The analytical findings from the study showed that among the socio-demographic attributes annual income, training received, access to information sources and knowledge level were significantly associated with the usage of ICTs by the farmers. The step-wise multiple regression analysis indicated that knowledge on ICT usage, annual income and access to information sources were the most influential factors affecting the usage of ICTs by the farmers. The policy implications of the study suggests paying more attention to increase the operational knowledge and access to ICTs with provision to hands-on training and economic incentives for rural poor farmers. The integrated approach combining both public and private sectors can be effective to improve the extent of ICT usage for efficient farm management.