Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization of Conservation Agriculture in Smallholder Kenyan Maize Farmers for Sustainable Intensification and Increased Climate Resilience
– Student Dissertation by Holly E. Morgan
Upscaling of sustainable-intensification systems such as conservation agriculture, which has shown great capacity to increase farm productivity and climate-resilience while reducing environmental degradation, has yet seen limited uptake in sub-Saharan Africa despite its potential. The purpose of this study is to examine challenges and successes of sustainable agricultural mechanization of conservation agriculture, a vital component of the innovation’s success, by conducting a location-based case-study in Laikipia, Kenya.
Areas in need of attention were: finance, extension services, and equipment access. Recommendations for issue remediation were developed from stakeholder interviews conducted in the case study, and findings from examination of mechanization success-stories in other countries and systems. Continued examination of trends across different communities and contexts will support a more robust, exhaustive understanding of mechanization challenges and opportunities, thereby enabling informed policy-making and project design for upscaling conservation agriculture.