My dear readers of Journal of Extension Education,
Welcome to a special issue of the JEE, on Agricultural Communication.
The earliest form of agricultural communication should have been when farmers shared information by word-of-mouth. Arthsasthra (around 2nd - 3rd century BC), an ancient Indian treatise on statecraft and economic policy, had discussed different methods of seed treatment for grains, pulses, sugarcane and tuber crops in detail. Thirukkural , a classic Tamil text (1st century BC/6th - 7th century BC) too had a separate chapter on farming.
The history of agricultural communication, in an organized form, can be traced back to 1440, with the invention of the Movable Type printing Press by Johannes Gutenberg. Starting with face-to-face and print, communication has taken different forms such as radio, television and now, the web, over the years.
Today, agricultural communication is considered as a social process designed to bring together agricultural technicians and farmers in a two-way process where people are both senders and receivers of information and co-creators of knowledge (FAO, 2006).
During 2006, FAO & GTZ had laid down six success factors for effective rural Communication:
SUCCESS FACTOR 1: Policy: Formulating policies enabling effective communication between research, advisory services, and farmersí organizations in rural areas
SUCCESS FACTOR 2: Capacities: Ensure that service providers are skilled in communication and have a positive attitude to communicate with clients
SUCCESS FACTOR 3: Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E): Facilitate systematic learning from experiences in communication approaches
SUCCESS FACTOR 4: Farmersí organizations: Engage representative farmersí organizations as partners in communication
SUCCESS FACTOR 5: Participatory methods: Use of participatory methods for active involvement of all partners in communication
SUCCESS FACTOR 6: Media strategy: Integrating a mix of media in a strategic manner to achieve the desired objectives
These aforementioned factors could be kept in mind while we design and implement projects in agricultural communication.
I hope you find the papers in this Special issue, interesting. Do send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.
D. Puthira Prathap