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Social learning and technology adoption: the case of coffee pruning in Peru


  • Jeremy G. Weber

    Corresponding author
    1. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, 1400 Independence Ave. SW, Washington, DC 20250-1800, USA
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A unique natural experiment involving a coffee pruning technology is used to study social learning. The yield effects of pruning take two years to appear, a characteristic that aids in identifying social learning apart from correlated unobservable variables that are a concern in the social learning and technology adoption literature. Panel data are employed that start with a private initiative which introduced systematic pruning in central Peru and that contain the population of participating growers. Results show a jump of at least 0.15 in the probability of adoption two years after the first pruning in a grower's group.