Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture

Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture No. 3/12

How Mobile Phones Contribute to Growth of Small Farmers?
Evidence from India

Surabhi Mittal and Mamta Mehar
International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), New Delhi, India


Rapid growth of mobile telephony and the introduction of mobile-enabled information services provide ways to improve information dissemination to the knowledge intensive agriculture sector and also helps to overcome information asymmetry existing among the group of farmers. It also helps, at least partially, to bridge the gap between the availability and delivery of agricultural inputs and agriculture infrastructure. This paper explores further on this topic and provides evidence to show how mobile phones and mobile-enabled agricultural services have impacted the farmers. As mobile penetration continues to increase among farming communities and information services and to adapt and proliferate, the scope exists for a much greater rural productivity impact in the future. To leverage the full potential of information dissemination enabled by mobile telephony along with supporting infrastructure and capacity building amongst farmers it is essential to ensure the quality of information, its timeliness and trustworthiness.

Keywords: ICT for development, agriculture extension services, mobile phones based agri-services, farmers in India, agricultural productivity and growth

JEL: O30, Q01, Q16, Q18

Vol. 51 (2012), No. 3: 227-244