The adoption of Cyber-Extension in Indonesia: Impact of extension agents’ perception of Cyber Extension’s innovation attributes and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) proficiency
In 2009, the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture officially launched an ICT-based extension, namely Cyber-Extension, to support extension agents in designing extension modules and delivering agricultural-related information to farmers. Recent studies have revealed that a small number of extension agents have shown interest in using Cyber-Extension. A descriptive design was employed to assess the implementation of Cyber-Extension in Indonesia by determining extension agents’ perceptions regarding Cyber-Extension and their proficiency using ICT. Extension agents across six regencies in Gorontalo province were invited and 221 agreed to participate. Personal interviews were conducted using a questionnaire.
The findings revealed that the majority of respondents were non-adopters of Cyber-Extension; at the no knowledge, knowledge, and persuasion stages. Participants in this study had positive perceptions of Cyber-Extension. The most favorably considered attribute was compatibility, followed by relative advantage and observability. The lowest score was found in the complexity attribute. Participants had relatively good confidence that they were proficient in using ICT, where participants had the highest confidence in the internet competencies followed by computer skills. Furthermore, seven predictors (relative advantage, compatibility, complexity, trialability, observability, computer skills, and internet competencies) were simultaneously entered in the logistic regression model to predict the adoption of Cyber-Extension. The model showed that complexity variable successfully predicted the Cyber-Extension adoption, significant at .05 level. The odds ratio of complexity predicted by the model was 6.10, meaning that each one-point increase in complexity was associated with the odds of adopting Cyber-Extension increasing by 6.10 multiplicative factor. This finding substantiates that the less complex the Cyber-Extension is, as perceived by the extension agents, the higher the probability of Cyber-Extension was for them to adopt. Further studies might focus on the communication channels being used as well as preferably to learn about Cyber-Extension or other ICT-based extension. Replicating this study with either extension agents in other provinces as respondents or other ICT-based extension systems across Indonesia is also highly recommended.