Use of Seasonal Forecast Information in Farm Level Decision Making in Bundelkhand, India

Nick Monzy Martin


Improving agricultural outcomes is an important means of addressing global poverty. The uncertainty of climate variability has a large influence over agricultural productivity. It can produce extreme climatic events such as floods or droughts that can significantly damage crop yields resulting in loss of livelihood and food security for small-scale farmers around the world. Additionally, farmers make farming decisions that reduce the risk of negative impacts resulting from climatic extremes but at the expense of increased yields and profits in advantageous climatic conditions. Seasonal forecast information (SFI) is one tool that can be used to address this issue by reducing the uncertainty of future climatic conditions. Many small-scale farmers, however, do not fully utilize such information when it is available. Research suggests that the effective use of SFI exists in a knowledge-action system where deficiencies in its various components may inhibit forecast use. These components include forecast dissemination, demand, acceptance (including salience, credibility, and legitimacy), understanding, and action capacity. This study examines these components and how they relate to the use (or nonuse) of monsoon forecast information in Bundelkhand, India, through the use of a ground-level questionnaire. Overall, it finds significant associations between dissemination, salience, and action capacity with the use of monsoon forecast information. The findings suggest that these issues need to be addressed in order to increase forecast usage in the study area

Keyword: Climate Variability; Agricultural Productivity; Seasonal Forecast Information (SFI); Monsoon Forecast Information; Bundelkhand;

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