Productivity assessments are let down by poor methods

Flawed methods are used to assess the productivity of new technology for farmers, resulting in unreliable evidence, according to a new briefing by Future Agricultures member Michael Loevinsohn.

New technology that enables sustainable and profitable production of food is critical for both food and nutrition security and economic development. Yet, as this Institute of Development Studies (IDS) policy briefing explains, recent research suggests assessments of the productivity gains farmers realise from new technology are routinely flawed methodologically and hence unreliable as a basis for decision making.

As a result, opportunities to support this key aspect of agricultural performance and more equitable benefits from it have been missed. The briefing explains why and highlights measures to stimulate demand for methodological quality in evaluations and reinforce their contribution to strengthening systems of innovation.

Read the briefing

Agricultural Impact Evaluation is Failing to Measure Up
IDS Policy Briefing 78 by Michael Loevinsohn