Obstacles to Widespread Diffusion of IPM in Developing Countries: Lessons From the Field
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Integrated pest management (IPM) is a way of managing agricultural pests using ecological principles and with minimum damage to the environment and human health. In developing countries, numerous IPM programs have been developed with the intent of increasing yields, reducing costs, and minimizing adverse impacts of pest management. Despite its promise and many millions of dollars being spent on training and diffusion, IPM has not been widely adopted in developing countries. This paper provides evidence about what is known about global adoption, what factors have been identified as obstacles to more widespread adoption, and ways of overcoming these factors. Behavioral economics provides insights that help explain lagging IPM adoption and promises potential for relatively simple solutions. Means of evaluating and implementing behavioral economics approaches are described and some lessons are gleaned from a single study employing these approaches in Ecuador. Implications for broader diffusion are discussed.