Knowledge Note

Does providing a free text messaging (SMS) reporting tool, which facilitates communication between farmers and the state-level Project Implementation Unit (PIU) overseeing the Fadama III project, improve the quality of service of the program? This note highlights initial outcomes from a pre-pilot exercise conducted in 2013 with two program objectives: First, to explore whether working with local Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) to train farmers to use and promote the tool was an effective means to get and maintain user adoption; and second, to examine whether the ICT-generated information and system helped the PIU better manage the project. Two main conclusions can be drawn from this pre-pilot. Firstly, it was found that CBO engagement led to significantly larger uptake and use of the system. And secondly, the State PIU only minimally used the reports that were being sent by farmers – despite institutional excitement about the system and a strong mandate from management to use the reports.

About the Presenters

Panthea Lee

Merrick Schaefer