PIERI-20617 Introducing ICT-enabled climate services to build smallholder farmers resilience: evidence from an experimental study in Benin


In smallholder farming systems, climate variability is one of the major challenges that lead to inefficiency in resource allocation, lower productivity and income. Climate services have increasingly been acknowledged to help build resilience through efficiency gains in the form of production cost decreases and productivity increases. Most of the existing climate service initiatives are implemented as pilots and their impact evaluations so far indicate positive effects on productivity and income, for instance. Despite these promising results, there is no evidence on how the successful pilot initiatives could be scaled-up. We design an experimental study to test at a large scale the effectiveness of selected scaling approaches to promote climate services for smallholder farmers. The initiative that we will test is a service package that involves a one-time group training, the provision of village specific precipitation forecasts through mobile phone SMS and a technical follow-up either in person by extension officers or via mobile phone. Our identification strategy will rely on a Clustered Randomized Controlled Trial (CRCT) design, involving two treatment groups that differ on the type of technical support (in-person vs phone-based). We assess the impact of the intervention on labor allocation (including female farmers labor), crop yield and income. We also consider secondary outcome variables such as knowledge, attitude and beliefs with respect to climate services service in general and weather forecasts in particular. Our study has the potential to generate rigorous evidence on the effectiveness of different approaches to promote climate services. This can inform policy decision makers but also contribute to the current literature on the impact of climate services and the role of ICT-enabled extension in building farmer’s resiliency.


Project leader: Rosaine Nerice Yegbemey

Project researchers: Esther OGOUNIYI ADIMI | ISSAKA Kassimou | Aline Aloukoutou | Modeste Djromahuton DOHOU | Monsoï Consolas Névinas HODONOU | Josué Yisségnon GOUWAKINNOU

Scientific mentors: Habiba Djebbari

Policy outreach mentors: Claude Sinzogan

Journal publication

No journal publications.

Working Papers

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Policy Briefs

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Final report

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No proposals.

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