Two Essays on Evaluation Challenges in Integrated Pest Management: An Evaluation Design for the Onion ipmPIPE and Identifying Women's Crops and Agricultural Technologies

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Virginia Tech

The two papers in this thesis are aimed at solving problems in Integrated Pest Management project, practice, and program evaluations. In the first paper, an evaluation design is constructed for the Onion ipmPIPE website, an onion pest information website. The Bayesian decision theoretic approach may not accurately model onion growers' pest management decisions throughout the season. Randomization of the treatment is possible, but an incomplete grower list proved to be a problem. The analysis shows that an instrumental variables approach may be the most appropriate method for estimating the impact of the Onion ipmPIPE website because its data needs are solved by using USDA-NASS surveying services. In the second paper, the challenge is to develop a practical method to measure benefits accruing to women from agricultural research using secondary data. Donors, governments and others are interested in determining how benefits from agricultural research accrue to women. We develop a three-step framework to identify women's crops and technologies. In step one, total potential benefits from research are estimated; step two allocates those benefits between men and women; step three, incorporates technology-specific parameters to refine the estimates of potential benefits. We apply this framework to Honduras and find that steps one and two provide the most information on the magnitude and distribution of benefits, but that refinements in step three can affect rankings of research program impacts on women.

onion, women in development, Honduras, impact evaluation, Integrated Pest Management