Authors: Abhinav Jha; Kunal Sinha
Addresses: Center for Studies in Science, Technology and Innovation Policy, School of Social Sciences, Central University of Gujarat, India ' Center for Studies in Science, Technology and Innovation Policy, School of Social Sciences, Central University of Gujarat, India
Abstract: Innovations fail for complex reasons. In India, there is the prevalent social stratification of 'castes' which plays a significant role in assigning work and allocating value along the agricultural value chain. However, the public research establishment tends to overlook these and other socio-technical aspects when they are designing machinery for the farming community. In this paper, we discuss a case of the automated makhana popping machine, an innovation introduced within the makhana value chain a few years back. Makhana is an aquatic cash crop grown in the eastern region of India mostly in the Mithilanchal region of Bihar. We will discuss why it did not diffuse as expected. The understanding gained can be extrapolated to improve the diffusion rate of other such innovations by intervening in the initial stages.
Keywords: socio-technical system; agricultural innovation; makhana; diffusion of innovation; caste.
International Journal of Agriculture Innovation, Technology and Globalisation, 2019 Vol.1 No.2, pp.144 - 165
Received: 08 Sep 2018
Accepted: 03 Jan 2019
Published online: 27 Aug 2019 *