Journal of Agricultural Science and Food Research

Journal of Agricultural Science and Food Research
Open Access

ISSN: 2593-9173

+441414719275

Abstract

Social Network Centrality and Food Security: Case of Small Holder Sweet Potato Farmers in Nakuru County, Kenya

Kamau NJ

Developing countries have for centuries faced food insecurity. Despite efforts by governments to allocate hugeamount of their budgets towards alleviating food security, citizens are still ravaging from hunger. Traditional andbureaucratic extension services are proving futile towards information dissemination. These officers are not cognitiveof the fact that other than their demonstration projects, exogenous variables contribute towards absorption of newtechnologies and ideas to carb food insecurity. Farmers in rural areas don’t operate in solitary but rather rely onfellow farmers, group formation and other social networks to source specific information concerning their productionand marketing. Considering this, farmers have been able to identify the most valuable information contacts atvarious levels of production process. This study therefore has analyzed the degree of centrality among variouscontacts in the informal networks identified by sweet potato farmers in Kenya. The analyses used the social networksoftware; UCINET to identify the most valuable contacts identified by the farmers. Their various measures ofcentralities have been captured and therefore scientifically identifying the ‘informal extension officers’ in study. Thestudy has implication on the policy aspect in developing countries. Governments in developing countries shouldempower these contacts to ensure a high success rate in technology absorption among small holder farmers andtherefore help to curb the vicious cycle of food insecurity.

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