How many simple technologies have been introduced to rural farming communities, only to fail miserably shortly after the nongovernmental organization (NGO) closes the project? Too many. The technologies were too complicated. Nobody was trained to use them. Materials could not be sourced locally and importation was prohibitively expensive. The list is long.
Speaking to Robert Burdick of Tillers International on the edge of a two-day workshop organized by the Appropriate Scale Mechanization Consortium at Bahir Dar University in Ethiopia on June 8-9, 2016, he outlined some of the factors which contribute to the success of mechanization interventions and why he is confident of the consortium’s success in the northwestern Amhara region. Burdick points out how past Tiller interventions have succeeded in reducing drudgery, increasing the incomes of small farmers and helping establish local service providers. Continue reading “Learning How to Mechanize Agriculture in Northwestern Ethiopia”