Mobile Phones and Innovations. An Empirical Description of Farmers´ Utilizations of the Mobile Phone in Upper East Region, Ghana.
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The mobile phone has provided new opportunities for various people around the globe. During the last 20 years the accessibility of this technology has increased tremendously. This study will describe some changes that the mobile phones has produced in Upper East Region, Ghana. It will show that rural farmers have found the mobile phone helpful in various ways. To be able to call to the markets to access price information, organization of transport and discussion on agricultural diseases with pesticide dealers are some of the findings that will be presented in this text. The data has been collected through a two-and-a-half-month fieldwork in the Kassena-Nankana Districts during the dry season 2016-17. I conducted a pilot survey to get a varied sample for the semi -structured interviews, and I had group discussions where I collected data to supplement the interviews. Theories about General Purpose Technologies, innovation, agricultural innovation systems and institutions will be addressed. Through these theories I will try to present the mobile phone as a technology that can facilitate change on a scale that is almost unprecedented in the study area. The mobile phone has connected people that were previously disconnected, and the communication possibilities it offers may have wide ranging effects on how the farmer s conduct their market transactions as well as their production methods. This paper will indicate that the market places are losing its central importance as a geographical area. It will show that a mobile phone handset has different functions that some farmers utilize to enhance local knowledge. Mobile Money Transfer (MMT) is a mobile phone banking service that is accessible to many more people than the commercial banks. Some of the changes can be regarded as innovations, and it is clear that some farmers benefit in many ways from the mobile phones different functions.
PublisherThe University of Bergen
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