- A-Z Publications
- Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa
- Previous Issues
- Volume 2012, Issue 44, 2012
Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa - Volume 2012, Issue 44, 2012
Volume 2012, Issue 44, 2012
Source: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 1 –9 (2012)More Less
As Munyua (2011) explains, quoting various authoritative sources, an AKIS links rural people and institutions to promote mutual learning and generate, share and utilise agriculture-related technology, knowledge and information (Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and World Bank 2000). It facilitates the interaction of the main agricultural actors such as farmers, agricultural educators, researchers and extensionists, and has the potential to harness knowledge and information from various sources for better farming, improved agricultural growth and livelihoods (World Bank 2004; Rivera, Qamar and Mwandemere 2005: vi).
The applicability of the major social science paradigms to the study of the agricultural knowledge and information systems of small-scale farmersSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 10 –43 (2012)More Less
The social sciences offer a rich array of paradigms within which to locate agricultural knowledge and information systems (AKIS) research. This article provides an overview of the major paradigms in the social sciences, identifying those which offer a lens through which the AKISs of small-scale farmers can be viewed. It is based on a review and analysis of the paradigms, perspectives and approaches that are appropriate for studying different facets of an AKIS. These systems are complex by nature but Social constructivism, Phenomenology, Interpretive and Participatory paradigms make possible a pluralistic and compatibilist approach that provides the necessary logic and harmony for such a study. A systems approach, mixed methods methodology and multiple data collection methods can be used to improve understanding of AKISs of this type. A pragmatic paradigmatic stance is recommended to guide the design for a comprehensive study of the AKISs of small-scale farmers in developing countries.
A regional assessment of the status of agricultural information and communication management by organisations in southern AfricaSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 44 –62 (2012)More Less
Information is a necessary resource for agricultural-related activities, but planned, systematic management of the generation, acquisition, organisation, storage and sharing of information is necessary to realise the full value of the information resources of organisations. The status of information and communication management (ICM) by 123 agricultural, forestry and fishery institutes in 10 southern African countries was assessed by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) in 2006-2009. Organisations had diverse ICM activities and sundry information, ICT and human capacity-building needs. Common key problems identified included unmet information needs, particularly local data; non-availability of extension material in local languages; lack of ICM skills; lack of awareness of the value of information and its management; lack of staff; lack of planning and strategies for ICM; and limited awareness of CTA products and services. Strategic options to address these ICM shortfalls, in particular the absence of information strategies and managers, were proposed. The need to develop organisational ICM strategies emerged as the top priority across all 10 southern African countries and was deemed essential to help organisations fully exploit their information assets and monitor and assess the impact of their work.
Source: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 63 –80 (2012)More Less
A review of the history of Okhombe, a rural village in the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Mountain Region, was undertaken to explore a possible causal link between cattle grazing and soil erosion. Secondary data, digitized maps of aerial photographs, rainfall data, and cattle numbers were analysed. Four historical episodes were identified in the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Mountain Region since the 1800s, while changes in land use, rainfall, and cattle numbers in Okhombe were tracked. The research examines the dominant view of many government staff and scientists, that overstocking and overgrazing of cattle on communal lands has resulted in soil erosion. However, the landscapes of Okhombe and the wider uKhahlamba Drakensberg region were shaped by multiple factors, with legislated disenfranchisement and territorial segregation since the 1800s onwards leaving a lasting imprint.
Mapping and auditing agricultural indigenous knowledge in Kenya : a case study of the Uasin Gishu and Keiyo districtsSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 81 –100 (2012)More Less
The purpose of this study was to map and audit agricultural indigenous knowledge (AIK) among farmers in Uasin Gishu and Keiyo districts in Kenya. It examines the extent of applications of AIK by farmers in their agricultural activities. A face-to-face interview complemented by focus group discussions was conducted with the farmers. It was found that most farmers lack knowledge of improved farming methods due to inadequate extension services. The survey reveals that the adopted indigenous knowledge is learnt through lineage from generation to generation. Among the methods used in storage and preservation of seeds and food crops are drying and use of ash while animal products are preserved by using herbs, and smoking. It was further noted that AIK has not been fully integrated with modern farming methods. The study recommends measures for improving the capturing, preserving and disseminating AIK for farmers. This is expected to contribute to agricultural productivity, sustainable food security, generation of foreign exchange, creation of income earning opportunities for farmers, and development of local agricultural content.
Is indigenous knowledge accessed and used by agricultural researchers and extension workers in Zimbabwe?Source: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 101 –125 (2012)More Less
Indigenous Knowledge (IK) is knowledge which has been developed and accumulated over time by a community and has been passed down over generations. It is represented in most spheres of human activity: in agriculture, traditional and alternative medicine, human and animal health, forestry and botany. This article discusses how Indigenous Agricultural Knowledge (IAK) is accessed and used by agricultural researchers and extension workers in Zimbabwe. We review the relevant literature, largely focused on IAK, to support a case study in Zimbabwe that responds to the following four research questions: What is the importance of IAK to agricultural research and extension in Zimbabwe? How frequent is IAK utilised? What are the sources of IAK and what are the types of IAK in use in the country? We conclude that IK is relevant in modern day agriculture and should be given sufficient attention in general and by researchers and extension workers. We conclude that the documentation and integration of IAK into research, and education and training is essential.
Source: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 126 –140 (2012)More Less
This article assesses information and knowledge needs, access and use for agricultural development in the rural areas of developing countries, with a specific focus on Tanzania. Data from focus groups and information mapping and linkage diagrams were used to triangulate with the interview data in order to bring together the strength of all data sets to validate, confirm and corroborate findings from various sources. The findings revealed that the information seeking patterns of farmers were location specific. The major sources of information for farmers were predominantly local. Most respondents indicated public extension as an important source of agricultural information. Private extension services, village meetings and farmer groups were significant sources of information in some regions. Printed information had low use. The role of information and communication technologies in providing access to agricultural knowledge and information, and the application of information and knowledge on farming systems in the rural areas of Tanzania are also presented. The article concludes with recommendations for improved access to agricultural knowledge and information in the rural areas of Tanzania.
Digital innovation for food security : a case study of the TEEAL programme and its contribution to agricultural research output in African institutionsSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2012, pp 141 –149 (2012)More Less
This article looks at The Essential Electronic Agricultural Library (TEEAL), an innovative offline database, and its impact on research output in agricultural institutions in Africa. The article also examines some lessons gathered from 10 years of training and outreach on the system in Sub-Saharan Africa. TEEAL, a project of Cornell University's R. Mann Library, in cooperation with over 50 major scientific publishers, societies, and index providers, is a digital collection of research journals for agriculture and related sciences. Researchers, students, academic staff and librarians can discover and access thousands of full-text PDF articles without the use of the Internet. Through TEEAL, scientists in developing countries now have access to current research; but has this access translated into effective research and teaching?
Several studies have been carried out to evaluate whether TEEAL was meeting its objective of contributing to the enhancement of the quality and effectiveness of agricultural research and teaching through improving students' and researchers' access to relevant literature. The studies took various approaches in collecting data including a questionnaire, interviews and a bibliometric analysis of publications from institutions that have acquired and are using TEEAL.
Results generally show that TEEAL is successfully meeting its objective. Recommendations are made for extending the use of TEEAL sets, particularly the inclusion of more journals from developing countries as a way of further enhancing its appeal to a wider audience.