A hybrid modelling approach to understanding adoption of precision agriculture technologies in Chinese cropping systems

Wenjing Li, Beth Clark, James A. Taylor, Helen Kendall, Glyn Jones, Zhenhong Li, Shan Jin, Chunjiang Zhao, Guijun Yang, Chuanmin Shuai, Xin Cheng, Jing Chen, Hao Yang, Lynn J. Frewer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

Precision agriculture has the potential to deliver improved and more sustainable food production. Despite the various Chinese policy initiatives to strengthen national food security, there is evidence that the adoption of precision agriculture technologies in China has been much lower when compared to other developed agricultural economies. This study therefore aims to explore factors that determine Chinese farmers’ adoption of precision agriculture technologies in cropping systems and to provide recommendations on technology promotion in the future. The current status of precision agriculture adoption by smallholder farmers within crop farming systems in the North China Plain was explored. An integrated model of “Adapted Unified Theory of Acceptance and Usage of Technology (AUT2)” was developed to explain individual farmers’ intention to adopt precision agriculture. 456 surveys were conducted via face to face interviews in the North China Plain and structural equation modelling analysis was used to estimate the proposed AUT2 model. The results showed that perceived need for technology characteristics (PNTC), perceived benefits, perception of the efficacy of facilitating conditions and perceived risks of adoption have significant impacts on farmers’ intention to adopt precision agriculture. The facilitating conditions (e.g. knowledge, resources and access to consultant services) were the best predictor improving Chinese farmers’ willingness to adopt these technologies. Policy makers and service providers need to consider these factors in the promotion of technologies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105305
Number of pages12
JournalComputers and Electronics in Agriculture
Volume172
Early online date16 Mar 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • agricultural service providers
  • precision farming
  • reduced inputs
  • small-holder agriculture
  • structural equation modelling
  • technology adoption
  • UKRI
  • STFC
  • ST/N006801/1

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