Social capital - ability and willingness to co-operate and work together for achieving common goals, and developing norms and networks for collective action - is crucial for successful uptake, diffusion, and impact of technological innovations. Case studies from the states of Maharashtra and Rajasthan, focusing on technological innovations in three crops – pigeonpea, groundnut, and pearl millet, revealed that:
Collective action overcomes problems of institutional access to information, credit, and problems of seed supply; enables large-scale adoption and diffusion of technological innovations, and positively impact on yields and incomes for farm households
In utilizing direct benefits from technology adoption for maximizing social and economic gains, farmers co-operate, and invest in facilities/institutions which are likely to benefit the community as a whole. In order to successfully adopt and benefit from impacts of technologies, farm households a. develop and use kinship, community, and other networks such as farmers’ co-operatives b. develop better social, political and labour relations with the agricultural labour / marginalized sections, where complex and labour intensive technologies are adopted
cooperate in repaying long-term debts to formal and informal creditors, and in investing in areas where real, symbolic, direct and indirect gains were expected - schools, hospitals, temples.