Factors Influencing Adoption and Use of Precision Agriculture
Type of DegreeDissertation
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While the potential for creating efficiencies are possible with precision agricultural tools, the various combinations of tools, the steep learning curve of these technologies, and the initial investment of each of the tools complicate farmers’ decisions to adopt these technologies. The purpose of this study is to create a model that describes, explains, and predicts precision agriculture adoption. The research takes a multi-disciplinary approach to studying precision agriculture adoption. The proposed model is based on the Transtheoretical Model’s stage of change and the decision making construct, decisional balance. Additionally, the constructs of precision agriculture self-efficacy, perceived ease of use, and perceived compatibility are integrated in the adoption decision model. A survey instrument was created to measure stage of change, decisional balance, precision agriculture self-efficacy, perceived ease of use, and perceived compatibility. 261 surveys were used in this study to empirically test the adoption-decision model. The results indicated that decisional balance, which is the weighing of importance of the advantages and disadvantages of using precision agriculture did, in fact, predict the stage of change. Additionally, perceived ease of use influenced the decisional balance. Perceived compatibility affected both decisional balance and the stage of change. The study did not find support that precision agriculture self-efficacy directly influenced the stage of change, but precision agriculture self-efficacy did indirectly affect stage of change through decisional balance and perceived ease of use. Farm size also influenced the stage of change, while off-farm employment and educational level did not affect the stage of change.