ICTs, participatory video and farmer-led agriculture extension services in Machakos District, Kenya

Ugo Vallauri

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

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This thesis explores the use of participatory video to enhance the provision of farmer-led agricultural extension services in rural Kenya. It brings together literatures on information and communication technologies for development (ICT4D), agricultural development and participatory development communication. The objectives of the research are: to understand the necessary
conditions making ICTs effective in developing farmer-led agricultural
extensions; to understand the influence of locally produced video in delivering
extension services; to explore whether participatory video brings more inclusion
to farmer-led agricultural extensions.

The empirical research was undertaken in three rounds between 2010 and 2012,
in partnership with two organisations using ICTs in the delivery of farmer-led
agricultural extensions in Kenya: the Infonet-Biovision network and its member,
Katoloni Mission community-based organisation in Machakos, Eastern Kenya.
The thesis revolves around the experiences of the author as both researcher and
practitioner in Kenya, through his dual role, first as a consultant and then as a
postgraduate research student collaborating closely with both organisations.

The main contributions of the thesis centre around the meaning, feasibility and
relevance of an approach to participatory video combining a focus on the creation
of agricultural extension content with the traditional attention on participation as
process. The thesis analyses information officers' enhanced role emerging from
participatory video, particularly the opportunity to learn more about local
agricultural innovation and to document it by creating locally relevant
agricultural extension content. The thesis also analyses farmers groups' responses
to participatory video production, in particular their interest in video about other
local farmers as a source of inspiration to improve their practice, despite the
multiple other challenges they experience. Finally, it reflects on the technical
challenges experienced and their implications for ICT4D initiatives in rural areas,
especially the need to consider infrastructural limits and the importance of
ensuring technical support and ownership of the implemented projects.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Unwin, Tim, Supervisor
  • Willis, Katie, Advisor
  • Kleine, Dorothea, Advisor
Award date1 Sept 2016
Publication statusUnpublished - 2016


  • ICT4D
  • Kenya
  • participatory video
  • agriculture extensions
  • farmer-led

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