Diffusion of Agricultural Information within Social Networks: Evidence on Gender Inequalities from Mali

Sep 25, 2017, 10:30am - 12:00pm

Andrew Dillan, Assistant Professor, Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics, Michigan State University will discuss his research on how social networks are an important mechanism for diffusing information when formal institutions are missing.  There may be distributional consequences from targeting only central nodes in a network. After implementing a social network census, one of three village-level treatments determined which treated nodes in the village received information about composting: random assignment, nodes with the highest degree, or nodes with high betweenness. We find information diffusion declines with social distance, suggesting frictions in the diffusion of information, but aggregate knowledge about the technology did not differ across targeting strategies. However, targeting nodes using betweeness measures in village-level networks does exclude less-connected nodes from new information. Women farmers are less likely to receive information when betweeness centrality is used in targeting, suggesting there are important gender differences in the social learning process.

Location:  Room 250A, Agricultural Administration (2120 Fyffe Road, Columbus, OH 43210).  You can also attend via webinar.