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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Decision processes in rural development Hale, Sylvia Marion 1976

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DECISION PROCESSES IN RURAL DEVELOPMENT  by SYLVIA MARION HALE B.Sc,  U n i v e r s i t y o f Bath, England. 1967  M.A.,  U n i v e r s i t y o f York, Toronto. 1968  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY  i n the Department of ANTHROPOLOGY AND SOCIOLOGY  We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming t o the required standard.  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA  In  presenting  this  an a d v a n c e d d e g r e e the I  Library  further  for  shall  agree  thesis  in p a r t i a l  fulfilment  of  at  University  of  Columbia,  the  make  that  it  freely  permission  available for  his  of  this  representatives. thesis  for  It  financial  written permission.  Department The  of  University  Sociology of  British  2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5  Date  January  5th  1976  by  the  is understood gain  Columbia  for  extensive  s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s may be g r a n t e d  by  British  shall  requirements  reference copying of  Head o f  that  not  the  I  agree  and this  be a l l o w e d  that  study. thesis  my D e p a r t m e n t  copying or  for  or  publication  w i t h o u t my  Acknowledgements  A very special word of thanks i s due to Professor R.A.H. Robson who f i r s t stimulated my interest i n theory construction, and who gave unf a i l i n g encouragement during the many problems I encountered i n applying this approach to a f i e l d s i t u a t i o n .  I also wish to acknowledge with  thanks the generous help given by other members of the committee during the protracted and often confused stages of drafting the thesis.  I am  especially grateful to Professors C.S. Belshaw, and M. Ames who devoted so much of t h e i r time to reading and commenting on successive drafts. Despite their misgivings at the u t i l i z a t i o n of a formal theory approach to anthropological f i e l d data, they were more than ready to o f f e r t h e i r support i n the experiment, and to grapple with i t s problems. Professor K.S. Mathur, the head of department of Anthropology at Lucknow University i n Uttar Pradesh, India, kindly agreed to supervise my research work while i n India.  His help was invaluable i n smoothing  out the many d i f f i c u l t i e s of launching a research project i n a foreign country.  S r i Sushil Chandra Gupta, a graduate student i n anthropology  at Lucknow University, greatly assisted me i n the translation and p r i n t i n g of questionnaires, and i n the i n i t i a l stages of interviewing. S r i Guro Deo, of Mohanlalganj, remainder of the research.  Lucknow, acted as my assistant for the  His cheerfulness and easy rapport with  v i l l a g e r s made him one of the best assistants one could hope to find. Special thanks are also due to the many l o c a l Block Development o f f i c e r s for  the courtesy and help which they extended to me throughout the research. This research was financed through a Canada Council Doctoral  Fellowship which I received from 1969-1973.  Abstract  T h i s t h e s i s develops  a g e n e r a l theory o f c h o i c e behaviour  i s a p p l i e d t o t h e a n a l y s i s o f response r u r a l India.  which  t o development programmes i n  The t h e o r y focuses on the s o c i a l p r o c e s s e s which s t r u c t u r e  p e r c e i v e d c h o i c e parameters f o r i n d i v i d u a l s d i f f e r e n t i a l l y w i t h i n the v i l l a g e communities.  situated  I t examines those mechanisms which  i n f l u e n c e t h e range o f a l t e r n a t i v e s l i k e l y t o be c o n s i d e r e d , a p p r e c i a t i o n of  t h e i r v a r i e d consequences, o r the l i k e l y outcome o f new p r o p o s a l s ,  and t h e i r p e r c e i v e d and a c t u a l f e a s i b i l i t y .  A b a s i c concept  i n t h e theory  is  "power", d e f i n e d here as " t h e a b i l i t y t o i n f l u e n c e the s t r u c t u r i n g  of  c h o i c e parameters o f o t h e r s " , through  of  i n f o r m a t i o n flow, p e r s u a s i o n , and access t o i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s .  c o n t r o l over c r i t i c a l  mechanisms Ten  hypotheses are d e r i v e d from t h e b a s i c t h e o r e t i c a l axiom o f r a t i o n a l ' a c t i o n , concerned  w i t h how such c o n t r o l w i l l be e x e r c i s e d , and the  i m p l i c a t i o n s which t h i s has f o r the scope o f c h o i c e s open t o o t h e r s . R u r a l development programmes i n I n d i a p r o v i d e t h e s u b s t a n t i v e c o n t e x t for '•  t e s t i n g t h e u t i l i t y o f these hypotheses.  d i r e c t l y concerned w i t h promoting i n n o v a t i o n among v i l l a g e r s ,  ''.' •v.?--..! •= i n c o r p o r a t e a wide range o f s p e c i f i c \  These programmes a r e and they  choices.  The theory p r e d i c t s t h a t w i t h i n t h e h i g h l y s t r a t i f i e d  village  •"communities, f i r s t hand access t o new i n f o r m a t i o n , and f u r t h e r d i f f u s i o n 'atvsecond hand, w i l l be c o n c e n t r a t e d among members o f the same f a c t i o n and* s o c i a l stratum as i n i t i a l l y p r i v i l e g e d i n f o r m a n t s .  Vertical  d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n a c r o s s s t r a t a w i l l be minimal,  and.its content  s t r o n g l y b i a s e d by t h e p a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t s o f i n i t i a l i n f o r m a n t s .  The  . , ' "theory f u r t h e r p r e d i c t s t h a t e v a l u a t i o n o f the m e r i t s o f any new p r o p o s a l s  w i l l be s t r o n g l y i n f l u e n c e d by the c h a r a c t e r o f r e l a t i o n s between informant strata, poorer  and r e c i p i e n t s .  i t s persuasive  As i n f o r m a t i o n flows v e r t i c a l l y between  impact w i l l d e c l i n e , as a f u n c t i o n o f r e l a t i v e l y  q u a l i t y i n f o r m a t i o n , the e x t e n t o f t e n s i o n s and c o n f l i c t i n g  i n t e r e s t s between s t r a t a , and p e r c e i v e d economic d i s p a r i t i e s . the theory p r e d i c t s t h a t access concentrated  t o any i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s w i l l be  among members o f the same f a c t i o n and s o c i a l s t r a t u m as  those persons r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t h e i r d i s t r i b u t i o n . of other s t r a t a w i l l decline with t h e i r preferences  Access by members  i n c r e a s i n g s o c i a l d i s t a n c e , and  are p r o g r e s s i v e l y l e s s l i k e l y  the investment o f r e s o u r c e s The  t o be c o n s i d e r e d i n  f o r community p r o j e c t s .  study succeeds i n demonstrating the u t i l i t y o f these  i n p r e d i c t i n g response t o development p r o j e c t s w i t h i n t h e f i v e communities.  Lastly,  hypotheses village  LEAF iv OMITTED IN PAGE NUMBERING.  V  TABLE OF CONTENTS Page L i s t of Tables  vii  L i s t of I l l u s t r a t i o n s  xi  Introduction Chapter One:  1 Models of Choice Behaviour Reformulation of Theory: Decision-Making as a Social Process  Chapter Two:  Decision Processes and Rural Development  Chapter Three: Research Procedures Characteristics of Respondents  4-41 35 42-62 63-99 85  Chapter Four:  Choice Alternatives i n Rural Development  100-110  Chapter Five:  Information and Choice  111-156  Source and Means of Communication Access to First-Hand Communication Diffusion of Information Content of Information Transmitted Conclusion Chapter Six:  Persuasion and Choice Competence of Informants Comprehensive Information Trust i n Advisors P r a c t i c a l i t y of New Proposals Preference Ordering of Projects Conclusion  .'V'/^Chapter*;.Seven: F e a s i b i l i t y •:•$), \.:; [  and Choice  Relevant F a c i l i t i e s Access to Input F a c i l i t i e s Conditions of Access Appropriation of F a c i l i t i e s Obstruction of Change . Conclusion  113 116 140 147 154 157-203 160 167 173 182 195 202 204-245 205 206 218 231 237 243  vi •f,'  Page Chapter Eight:  Conclusion  Bibliography  246-266 267-284  Appendix 1.  Tables XLI - LVII  285-318  Appendix 2.  Translation of Questionnaire from Hindi  319-331  V l l  LIST  OF  TABLES  Page  Table I  Number Interviewed by V i l l a g e  66  Table I I  Caste Ranking by V i l l a g e  86  Table I I I  Landholding o f Respondents by V i l l a g e  86  T a b l e IV  Occupation by Landholding  89  Table V  Caste by Landholding  89  Table V I  F a c t i o n by Caste f o r F i v e V i l l a g e s  94  Table V I I  F a c t i o n by Landholding  94  Table V I I I  Summary o f Mean Adoption Rates f o r a l l P r o j e c t s by V i l l a g e  107  Summary o f Mean Adoption Rates f o r a l l P r o j e c t s by F a c t i o n and Caste  109  F i r s t - H a n d Communication w i t h Block O f f i c i a l s by F a c t i o n and Caste  119  D i r e c t Access t o V i l l a g e O r g a n i z a t i o n s by F a c t i o n and Caste  121  D i r e c t Access t o Mass Media by F a c t i o n and Caste  129  F i r s t - H a n d Communication w i t h Informants Outside the V i l l a g e by F a c t i o n and Caste.  134  C o r r e l a t i o n between Landholding and F a c t i o n and Caste D i v i s i o n s  138  Access t o F i r s t - H a n d Communication by F a c t i o n and Caste D i v i s i o n s , C o n t r o l l i n g Landholding  138  Summary o f Average Knowledge o f Development P r o j e c t s by F a c t i o n and Caste  143  Summary o f Ignorance as a F a c t o r i n Non-adopt i o n o f P r o j e c t s by F a c t i o n and Caste  155  P e r c e i v e d Competence o f Block A d v i s o r s  162  Summary o f Average Adoption o f P r o j e c t s Among Informed Respondents,, C o n t r o l l i n g Contact With O f f i c i a l s • '  164  T a b l e IX  Table X  Table XI  Table XII  Table X I I I  Table XIV  Table XV  '"Table XVI  <!al|ie x v i i  Table  XVIII  Table XIX  for Five Villages  viii  Page Table XX  Adoption of Seeds and F e r t i l i z e r by Contact, Controlling Faction and Caste  168  Summary of Average Adoption of Projects Among Informed Respondents, Controlling D e t a i l i n Information  171  Adoption of Seeds and F e r t i l i z e r by Degree of Detail i n Information, Controlling Faction and Caste  172  Table XXIII  Indices of Antipathy by Faction and Caste  175  Table XXIV  Total Antipathy Score  177  Table XXV  Summary of Average Adoption of Projects Among Informed Respondents, Controlling Antipathy Score  179  Adoption of Seeds and F e r t i l i z e r by Antipathy, Controlling Faction and Caste  181  Summary of Average Adoption of Projects Among Informed Respondents, Controlling Landholding  186  Summary of Average Adoption of Projects Among Informed Respondents, Controlling Landholding and Contact With O f f i c i a l s  188  Table XXIX  Interaction Between Contact and Landholding  189  Table. XXX  Interaction Effects Between Three Major Variables 192  Table XXXI  Proportional Differences i n Adoption Rates Controlling Three Major Variables  194  Access to Credit F a c i l i t i e s : Cooperative Societies  210  •Table XXXIII  Access to Credit F a c i l i t i e s from the Block  213  Table'XXXIV  Access to Grant F a c i l i t i e s  216  Table XXXV  Conditions of Access to A l l F a c i l i t i e s by Faction and Caste  220  Table XXXVI  Credit from Moneylenders.  225  Table XXXVII  Personal Loans Given Over Previous 5 Years  228  Table XXI  Table XXII  Table XXVI Table. XXVII Table XXVIII  Table XXXII  ix Page Table XXXVIII  Exchange  o f P e r s o n a l Loans  Table XXXIX  Joint  Table XL  D i s t r i b u t i o n of Common Lands: Experiences Recounted by F a c t i o n and Caste  Investment  229 229  239  APPENDIX 1 Page Table XLI  Table  XLII  Caste Composition  o f the F i v e V i l l a g e s , by  Family  286  Adoption Rates by V i l l a g e  287-288  Table XLIII Adotpion by F a c t i o n  and Caste: A l l V i l l a g e s  T a b l e XLIV  Combined  289-290  T a b l e XLV  Knowledge o f Development P r o j e c t s  291-292  Frequency o f I n f o r m a t i o n and Adoption o f T a b l e XLVI Projects  by F a c t i o n  and Caste  293-294  Table XLVII Table  Table I L  Table L  Table L I  Table L I I  Table  LIII  Table.LIV .  T a b l e LV ".  Table LVI  Table  Lack o f I n f o r m a t i o n as a F a c t o r i n Non-adoption  295-296  Adoption of P r o j e c t s  297-298  XLVIII  LVII  Among Informed V i l l a g e r s  Frequency o f I n f o r m a t i o n and Adoption o f P r o j e c t s by Contact With O f f i c i a l s Adoption Among Informed Respondents C o n t r o l l i n g Contact With O f f i c i a l s Frequency o f I n f o r m a t i o n and Adoption o f P r o j e c t s by D e t a i l i n I n f o r m a t i o n  299-300 301-302 303-304  Adoption Among Informed Respondents, C o n t r o l l i n g D e t a i l i n Information  305-306  Frequency o f I n f o r m a t i o n and Adoption o f P r o j e c t s by A n t i p a t h y '  307-308  A d o p t i o n Among Informed Respondents, A n t i p a t h y Score  309-310  Controlling  Frequency o f I n f o r m a t i o n and Adoption o f P r o j e c t s by Landholding  311-312  Adoption Among Informed Respondents, Landholding  313-314  Controlling  Frequency o f I n f o r m a t i o n and A d o p t i o n o f P r o j e c t s C o n t r o l l i n g Landholding and Contact With O f f i c i a l s  315-316  Adoption Among Informed Respondents, C o n t r o l l i n g Landholding and Contact With O f f i c i a l s  317-318  X I  LIST  OF  ILLUSTRATIONS Page  Map: L o c a t i o n o f the F i v e V i l l a g e s S t u d i e d  65  INTRODUCTION  The  c e n t r a l o b j e c t i v e o f t h i s t h e s i s i s t o develop and t e s t a  g e n e r a l theory o f c h o i c e behaviour.  The body o f theory concerned w i t h  e l a b o r a t i o n o f formal models o f c h o i c e b e h a v i o u r i s examined i n the first  chapter.  The major t h e o r e t i c a l assumptions which form the bases  of these models and weaknesses i n t h e i r g e n e r a l p r e d i c t i v e u t i l i t y are discussed.  A r e - o r i e n t a t i o n o f t h e o r e t i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e i s suggested as  the b a s i s from which t o generate a broader theory o f processes.  decision-making  In t h i s f o r m u l a t i o n t h e c e n t r a l focus o f concern i s w i t h the  e x p l a n a t i o n o f how c h o i c e parameters a r e s t r u c t u r e d .  I t e n t a i l s exami-  n a t i o n o f the mechanisms which i n f l u e n c e the range o f a l t e r n a t i v e s l i k e l y t o be p r e s e n t e d  and c o n s i d e r e d ,  ..their v a r i e d consequences and w e i g h t i n g outcome o f proposed a c t i o n s .  and the chooser's a p p r e c i a t i o n o f of u n c e r t a i n t i e s i n the l i k e l y  L a s t l y , i t e n t a i l s examination o f the  mechanisms which i n f l u e n c e the r e l a t i v e f e a s i b i l i t y o f d i f f e r e n t a l t e r n a tives.  The same g e n e r a l approach a p p l i e s t o the a n a l y s i s o f i n d i v i d u a l  c h o i c e and t o p o l i c y d e c i s i o n s a f f e c t i n g groups o r communities as a whole.  A s e r i e s o f t e n hypotheses a r e d e r i v e d from the theory  w i t h c o n t r o l over i n f o r m a t i o n flow, p e r s u a s i o n , facilities, ' • j . - , >  concerned  and c o n t r o l over i n p u t  as these determine parameters o f c h o i c e ,  R u r a l development programmes i n I n d i a a r e s e l e c t e d as the  substantive context  f o r t e s t i n g t h e hypotheses.  .'.directly concerned w i t h  These programmes are  s t r u c t u r i n g c h o i c e parameters f o r i n d i v i d u a l s  w i t h i n the s o c i a l c o n t e x t o f v i l l a g e communities.  Applied theories of  c h o i c e b e h a v i o u r are i n c o r p o r a t e d i n t o t h e i r p r a c t i c a l o b j e c t i v e of  promoting innovations, although only infrequently are they associated with the testing of such theories.  Chapter Two examines the relevance  and implications of the t h e o r e t i c a l model proposed here for the analysis of these programmes.  I t indicates the significance of questions raised  by the theory and the extent to which these issues have been addressed i n current research. Chapter Three describes the research procedures used.  It out-  lines methods of. data c o l l e c t i o n and the main limitations of these data. The background c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of respondents are described as these relate to important dimensions i n the theory. Innovations sponsored through the development programmes are described i n Chapter Four.  Most of them c a l l for response by i n d i v i d u a l  farmers and householders, but those concerned with public amenities a f f e c t the communities as a whole.  These projects provide the framework for  analysis of choice behaviour. The analysis of data i s presented i n the following three chapters Five, Six and Seven.  The chapters are ordered i n r e l a t i o n to the three  primary mechanisms i d e n t i f i e d i n the theory as determinants of choice •parameters i n a s o c i a l context. . .:\  Chapter Five examines hypotheses  concern-  •; '••  .ing: the flow of information within a community, as these a f f e c t the range of riew ^alternatives and consequences known to d i f f e r e n t i n d i v i d u a l s . :  - j C j ^ p t e r ^ S i x examines mechanisms of persuasion, as these a f f e c t the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n and evaluation of information received.  Chapter Seven  ;examhe s mfe'chanisms of control over input f a c i l i t i e s , as these affect L  ^t^^'aijge^xj'f alternatives which are f e a s i b l e .  Tests of the various  hypotheses are ..presented i n r e l a t i o n to a detailed discussion of t h e i r  importance f o r the o p e r a t i o n and achievements o f the development programmes i n the v i l l a g e s The study.  studied.  f i n a l c h a p t e r summarizes b r i e f l y the r e s u l t s  I t indicates  their p r a c t i c a l implications  programmes, and t h e i r b r o a d e r s i g n i f i c a n c e behaviour.  o f the  f o r development  f o r the theory o f c h o i c e  CHAPTER ONE MODELS OF CHOICE BEHAVIOUR  A large body of theory has developed which i s concerned with the elaboration of formal or abstract models of choice behaviour.  Their  objective Is to provide general predictive theories which can be applied to any substantive context once the appropriate parameters are defined. The major theoretical assumptions which form the bases of these  formal  models, and weaknesses i n their general p r e d i c t i v e u t i l i t y , are examined at length below.  A re-orientation of t h e o r e t i c a l perspective i s  suggested as -the basis from which to generate a broader theory of decision-making  processes.  Hypotheses derived from this proposed theory  are tested i n the analysis of choice i n response to development programmes Choice i s defined as "the act of exerting a preference between alternatives".  The axiom of r a t i o n a l action, from which formal models  are derived, i d e n t i f i e s four parameters which bound any choice.  These  parameters are alternatives, benefits, costs, and preference ordering. 'Benefits' and 'costs' are concepts which denote p o s i t i v e and negative preferences.  i„  The axiom states as the r e l a t i o n between these parameters,  A l l persons choose, i n accordance with t h e i r preference ordering, that alternative which maximizes the balance •of benefits over costs.  %ThJ|very simplicity of t h i s axiom i s deceptive.  I t constitutes not a  -prediction for behaviour but a tautology, i t s tenets true by d e f i n i t i o n . Predictions can be l o g i c a l l y derived from the axiom when each of the  5  parameter values are f i x e d .  The choice equation has an unambiguous  solution when the alternatives facing a chooser are given, when the consequences or the benefits and costs associated with each alternative are given, and further, when the chooser has a c l e a r l y defined preference ordering for alternatives.  In e f f e c t , the axiom defines the  elements of choice but does not i t s e l f constitute a p r e d i c t i v e theory. The tenets of the axiom are l o g i c a l l y u n f a l s i f i a b l e .  A f t e r the fact,  the choice made i s by d e f i n i t i o n what the chooser preferred.  I f this  choice was not i n accordance with p r i o r predictions, this does not imply that the choice was i r r a t i o n a l ' . 1  I t implies that the chooser may have  invoked a d i f f e r e n t preference ordering from that ascribed to him, or that his preferences were ordered with reference to subjectively perceived alternatives, costs and benefits, which may or may not coincide with 'objective' p o s s i b i l i t i e s apparent to an observer.  However, any  such modification permits the p r e d i c t i o n of r a t i o n a l choice to retreat to a p o s i t i o n of u n f a l s i f i a b i l i t y .  The apparent f l e x i b i l i t y of a l l  choice parameters raises serious d i f f i c u l t i e s for the p r e d i c t i v e u t i l i t y of the axiom.  The problems incurred have been conceptualized p r i m a r i l y  as problems of devising appropriate measurement techniques for specifying parameter values i n a given choice s i t u a t i o n .  In practice, i t has  proven very d i f f i c u l t to determine these values p r i o r to the act of ;.'$.^£chbice i t s e l f , although they can usually be described i n retrospect. ::• ••  •'.  ••^\^*Spccessive ad hoc modifications have been proposed to the tenets of the ''^V^'x^pm. in attempts to apply i t under varying conditions of indeterminate • • .•..  .'' •  ''.!' parameter values.  These have largely f a i l e d to resolve the related  problem of u n f a l s i f i a b i l i t y , which i n turn r e f l e c t s the tautological  6  nature of the choice equation. The following analysis considers each of the main parameters i n turn.  I t highlights the problems inherent i n any attempt to ascribe  f i x e d values to them, and the t h e o r e t i c a l limitations of modifications proposed to deal with t h i s .  It i s suggested here that the major problem  does not l i e i n the f a i l u r e of measurement techniques.  It l i e s i n the  inherently indeterminate nature of these choice parameters.  The limited  predictive u t i l i t y of proposed reformulations i n turn stems from the conceptualization of such parameter values as exogenous factors i n a theory of choice.  A d i f f e r e n t t h e o r e t i c a l perspective i s proposed here  i n which parameters specified by the axiom constitute the central variables to be predicted by a theory of choice behaviour.  In terms of  this perspective, the axiom of r a t i o n a l action serves only to define the l o g i c a l r e l a t i o n between choice parameters. function as a predictive theory.  It does not i t s e l f  A second important corollary of this  change i n focus i s that choice behaviour i s not conceptualized as a decision made at a single point i n time, but as the process which a decision comes to be structured.  through  The concept of "choice  behaviour" refers to t h i s process and not simply to the act of choice itself.  Alternatives .• .  The f i r s t major parameter of choice s p e c i f i e d by the axiom i s  . >the range of alternatives considered. ;  ities  The scope of behaviour p o s s i b i l -  i s limited not only by the logic of the situation, but by  imagina-  tion, by information available, and other factors which r e s t r i c t the  7  range of options which come to mind.  Successive modifications to the  axiom i n application, have been prompted by the fact that, i n most contexts, the alternatives open to a decision-maker determined  are not pre-  and there are few rules f o r generating them.  In order to apply the axiom i n contexts where the f u l l range of alternatives may not be considered, the formal requirement of 'maximizing' benefits has been revised to the less exacting requirement Simon, among others, argues that a chooser may  of ' s a t i s f i c i n g ' .  not s t r i v e to maximize  h i s goals but simply to f i n d any alternative which seems reasonable i n r e l a t i o n to his l e v e l of aspiration concerning his goals (Simon & 1964) .  1957,  Cyert and March s i m i l a r l y propose to modify the axiom from  'omniscient r a t i o n a l i t y " to 'adaptive r a t i o n a l i t y ' i n which a chooser seeks only a 'good' move, and not the 'best' move (1964, 289-304). This p o t e n t i a l l y useful reformulation resolves the question of how to cope conceptually with the i n f i n i t y of l o g i c a l alternatives. At the same time i t r e f l e c t s i n more overt form the weakness of the axiom as a predictive t o o l .  It draws attention to the t a u t o l o g i c a l  structure of the relations i t defines.  As Feldman and Kanter emphasize,  concepts of s a t i s f i c i n g and dynamic aspirations may be i n t u i t i v e l y appealing but they remain open to the same c r i t i c i s m of non-operationali z a t i o n as applied to maximization.  It constitutes no more than a  ;convenient ad hoc assumption to explain behaviour after the fact of .v* choice (1965, 634). .,  I t i s proposed here that these problems stem from asking the  wrong question.  Once i t i s asknowledged that not a l l alternatives  can be perceived or considered i n the choice equation, the c r i t i c a l  8  theoretical issue becomes that of predicting which alternatives w i l l be considered,  and by whom.  The analysis of choice i n terms of this  perspective raises questions concerning the mechanisms which may i n fluence the range of alternatives considered  by any chooser, and the  factors which may prompt some alternatives to be stressed while others are suppressed or ignored.  Consequences - Benefits and Costs The benefits and costs associated with each alternative comprise two further parameters of choice.  Further modifications to the axiom  have been prompted by the recognition that i n many p r a c t i c a l choice situations the p o t e n t i a l outcome of d i f f e r e n t actions cannot be r e a d i l y forseen or evaluated.  The formal requirement of determined benefits  and costs have been relaxed to incorporate more general conditions of uncertain consequences. These proposed changes have c r i t i c a l l o g i c a l implications for the structure of the axiom and explanations  derived from i t .  the l o g i c of reverse causality i n an explanation,  To u t i l i z e  i . e . that action was  undertaken i n order to achieve a future objective, i t i s necessary to specify exactly what aspects of any action or i n s t i t u t i o n have relevant consequences, and exactly which consequences have selective force. Without such s p e c i f i c a t i o n the explanation  becomes merely ex-post-factum  determinism, as the many c r i t i c s of the f u n c t i o n a l i s t school of analysis •have pointed out (Stinchcombe 1968, 129). The f i r s t l i m i t i n g condition on choice relates to the range of consequences considered.  As with alternatives, a chooser may well not  take into account a l l the s i g n i f i c a n t consequences or ramifications which  9  may,stem from d i f f e r e n t actions. of the task, involved.  In part, this r e f l e c t s the magnitude  Even a computer cannot work out a l l the l o g i c a l l y  possible consequences of a chess move.  Lindblom i n p a r t i c u l a r has  stressed the i n e v i t a b i l i t y of non-comprehensive  analysis.  The best  administrator or manager cannot be competent on a l l p o l i c i e s , or even comprehend one of them completely (1964, 162). One such i l l u s t r a t i o n i s Hunter's description of the chain of largely unintended consequences which stemmed from one ostensively simple innovation of encouraging farmers to use more f e r t i l i z e r s .  The new f e r t i l i z e r harmed the o l d  low-yield crops, and so required the introduction of new v a r i e t i e s . These v a r i e t i e s required e a r l i e r planting when the ground was so hard that iron ploughs and a tractor were needed instead of bullocks.  Land  consolidation was required i n order to use the tractor, plus more money to purchase i t .  More labour was needed to clear the o l d crop sooner.  Better spraying was needed as the new v a r i e t i e s proved more susceptible to diseases.  More weeds grew, hence requiring more labour and better  equipment to clear them, and so on (Hunter 1969, 107-138). A modification has been proposed i n the tenets of the axiom of r a t i o n a l choice to cope with indeterminate consequences, which Lindblom terms the 'science of muddling through' (1964, 155-169).  He argues  that i t i s impossible to grasp a l l the consequences of an action i n .their entirety.  Rather, attention s h i f t s , and with i t the range of  consequences brought to mind. 'obstacle to the next.  The administrator muddles along from one  Simon s i m i l a r l y suggests that the decision-maker  overcomes limited knowledge by assuming that he can i s o l a t e a closed system from the world, and so consider only factors most closely connected  10  to the action i n question (1957, 81). This reformulation i s i n t u i t i v e l y appealing, but as an explanatory theory i t suffers from the same limitations as s a t i s f i c i n g i n r e l a t i o n to alternatives considered.  I t may be used to account f o r  behaviour only after the fact of choice.  An alternative t h e o r e t i c a l  perspective i s proposed here i n which analysis centres on the mechanisms which may d i r e c t the chooser's focus of attention, within which consequences are sought and considered, and the factors which may prompt certain consequences to be stressed and others to be minimized or overlooked.  Probability and Risk The d i f f i c u l t y of anticipating a l l the possible consequences of various alternatives i s part of a more general problem of unpredictability. Where both the range and the l i k e l i h o o d of possible consequences are uncertain, i t may be impossible for the chooser to determine i n advance whether a given alternative w i l l r e s u l t i n net benefits or losses. Under such conditions of r i s k and uncertainty, no predictions can be derived from the axiom of r a t i o n a l choice.  There i s no d e f i n i t e solution  to the choice equation. Further modifications have been introduced i n order to apply the axiom to choice under risky conditions.  They u t i l i z e general propo-  s i t i o n s derived from the mathematical theory of p r o b a b i l i t y . 'summarizes  Arrow  attempts to describe uncertainty by p r o b a b i l i t i e s i n terms of  three broad categories:  a) t h o s e who treat p r o b a b i l i t y d i s t r i b u t i o n s as  subjectively given to the chooser and who do not attempt further  analysis,  b) those who derive a l l p r o b a b i l i t y judgements from a limited number of  11  a p r i o r i p r o b a b i l i t i e s , and l a s t l y , c) those who  attempt to relate the  degree-of-belief and frequency theory to each other through the law of large numbers (1971, 9). The simplest modification i s based on the assumption that while the consequences are not certain, the p r o b a b i l i t y d i s t r i b u t i o n of r i s k i s known.  Hence i t predicts that the decision-maker w i l l select that  alternative with the highest p r o b a b i l i t y of successful outcome.  This  reformulation, however, has not been substantiated by empirical tests. It was  f i r s t challenged by studies of gambling behaviour, notably i n  the work of Bernouli.  He stressed the importance of distinguishing  between objective and subjective calculations of risks and  returns.  Objective values are not always good indicators of a subject's (Latane 1964,  128-140).  with limited resources  choice  Gambling experiments indicated that individuals are reluctant to take expensive r i s k s .  to choose the alternative with low cost over ones with higher even i f the l a t t e r had a greater objective p r o b a b i l i t y of  They tend costs,  success.  These experiments pinpointed an important boundary condition which i n fluences the parameter values of choice, and prompted further useful insights into risk-taking behaviour.  It i s noteworthy that although  the data contradicted the proposition that alternatives with the highest p r o b a b i l i t y of success are always chosen, these results were r e a d i l y gt^e-interpreted i n terms of the axiom. greater value for a poor man. greater value for a poor man. amount as a r i c h man  A small amount of return has a  S i m i l a r l y , a given l e v e l of cost has a Hence he i s less l i k e l y to r i s k the same  for a gamble.  Further experiments indicated that there are additional variables  12  which i n f l u e n c e the s u b j e c t i v e e s t i m a t e s  of parameter v a l u e s .  suggested  c o n t r o l l e d , the above c o n d i t i o n  has  c o n d i t i o n of r e l a t i v e c o s t was  s t i l l not always been s u b s t a n t i a t e d e x p e r i m e n t a l l y .  appeared t o p r a c t i c e i r r a t i o n a l ' 1  subject wishing  (Simon 1967,  Many s u b j e c t s  event-matching s t r a t e g i e s .  choose a l t e r n a t i v e s w i t h a r e l a t i v e frequency to p r e c e d i n g rewards  When the  206).  which was  T h i s may  They  proportional  be i n t e r p r e t e d as a  t o maximize but not knowing what the maximum s t r a t e g y  i s , b u t t h i s i s an u n l i k e l y e x p l a n a t i o n i n such a t r a n s p a r e n t Secondly, menter.  the s u b j e c t may  situation.  see i t as a c o m p e t i t i v e game w i t h t h e e x p e r i -  T h i r d l y , some l e a r n i n g p r o c e s s may  be i n v o l v e d , w i t h  c h o i c e b e i n g guided by immediate p a s t e x p e r i e n c e  (ibid,  future  206).  This  experiment i s v a l u a b l e i n drawing a t t e n t i o n t o the attempts by to e s t i m a t e own  the p r o b a b l e  outcomes of c h o i c e s on the b a s i s of  e x p e r i e n c e , which i n t h i s case appears t o have o v e r r i d d e n  'official'  estimate  of p r o b a b l e  The major d i f f i c u l t y  outcomes g i v e n by the  their the  experimenter.  i n the a p p l i c a t i o n of p r o b a b i l i t y theorems  t o c h o i c e , i s t h a t u s u a l l y no b a s i s i s p r o v i d e d formulate  choosers  f o r the chooser t o  e s t i m a t e s o f p r o b a b i l i t i e s o f d i f f e r e n t outcomes o c c u r r i n g .  The mathematical j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r the p r o b a b i l i t y theorem i s the of l a r g e numbers.  A t b e s t t h i s would seem to r e q u i r e e x t e n s i v e  i e n c e o r t r i a l s as a p r e r e q u i s i t e f o r a c c u r a t e e s t i m a t e s . o f f e r s p r e c i s e l y such a f o r m u l a t i o n i n h i s model of the subgoal'  (1964, 139-140).  exper-  Latane  'maximum chance  In p r a c t i c e , t h i s i n v o l v e s the s e v e r e l y  l i m i t i n g assumption t h a t o t h e r t h i n g s remain e q u a l w h i l e the  chooser  b e t s on the same outcome an u n s p e c i f i e d number o f times, u n t i l he estimate  law  f r e q u e n c i e s of s u c c e s s .  can  Only then can be s t a b i l i z e h i s c h o i c e s .  13  At best, such strategies can only be approximated i n routinely repeated and short-term decisions, where the costs of f a i l u r e are so small that the chooser can afford repeated losses.  In any case, the gambling  experiment noted above suggests that t h i s does not accurately describe the way  that subjects make choices over a series of t r i a l s . A further p r o b a b i l i s t i c reformulation to cope with the d i f f i c u l t y  of unknown consequences i s the p r i n c i p l e of 'minimax'.  This assumes that  under conditions of uncertainty, the states of nature are known, but not the p r o b a b i l i t y of their occurrence.  The p r i n c i p l e evoked to cope with  this i s the Bayesian assumption that everything i n nature i s equiprobable  (Arrow 1971,  volent nature.  12).  I t assumes a malevolent  opponent or male-  I t prescribes a strategy for r a t i o n a l choice i n accord-  ance with the postulate of minimax, or regret payoff.  The subject  compares the worst possible outcome of each a l t e r n a t i v e and selects that which w i l l minimize losses. up to empirical test.  This p r i n c i p l e again, has not stood  Even i n games where the subjects were e x p l i c i t l y  t o l d that the presentation of rewarding alternatives was  random, they  s t i l l continued to search for patterns and to attempt event-matching strategies  (Simon 1967,  210).  A d i f f e r e n t approach to the analysis of p r o b a b i l i t y which i s closer to that advocated here, incorporates much weaker assumptions. Probability i s conceptualized simply i n terms of degree-of-belief. According to the formulation, proposed by Keynes, i t constitutes a r e l a t i o n between the evidence and the event considered, but i s not necessarily measurable.  He does not even consider that i n general i t i s  possible to order the p r o b a b i l i t i e s of d i f f e r e n t events.  Keynes suggests  14  further that i t i s necessary to consider the weight of evidence r e l a t i v e to which p r o b a b i l i t y i s formed.  Uncertainty can thus be seen as having  two dimensions, p r o b a b i l i t y and weight of evidence, neither of which need be measurable  (Arrow 1971, 16).  Keynes' approach has the merit of  greater realism than the above assumptions, but at the acknowledged cost that i t can provide no p r e d i c t i v e formula for maximizing choices. It may well be f o r this reason that i t has received l i t t l e emphasis i n subsequent l i t e r a t u r e on p r o b a b i l i t y and choice, although i n i t i a l l y proposed i n 1921. In summary, none of these p r o b a b i l i s t i c reformulations appear to s i g n i f i c a n t l y increase the p r e d i c t i v e power of the axiom under conditions of r i s k .  For the most part, no operational procedures are provided for  determining the subjective p r o b a b i l i t y estimates formulated by the chooser. The degree of f i t between formulae such as 'maximum chance subgoal' or 'minimax' solutions and how subjects actually make choices i s generally not impressive and not consistent over d i f f e r e n t experiments.  The  alternative approach proposed here focuses attention not on p r o b a b i l i s t i c formulae, but on examination of how a chooser estimates r i s k under uncertain conditions.  This e n t a i l s consideration of the variables which  influence a chooser's degree of b e l i e f i n the l i k e l i h o o d of certain outcomes, and how evidence from d i f f e r e n t sources and experiences i s l i k e l y to be evaluated and incorporated into any such estimation of risk.  Preference Ordering Preference ordering between alternatives constitutes the l a s t major parameter bounding the act of choice.  The l o g i c a l requirement of  15  f i x e d p r e f e r e n c e s has proven  very d i f f i c u l t t o o p e r a t i o n a l i z e .  may have a m u l t i p l i c i t y o f g o a l s o f v a r y i n g importance, between them.  and may  A chooser fluctuate  These p r e f e r e n c e s , moreover, may o r may n o t c o i n c i d e w i t h  those a t t r i b u t e d by o b s e r v e r s . p r o f i t maximization  M o d i f i c a t i o n i n t h e i n i t i a l assumption o f  has p e r m i t t e d m u l t i p l e g o a l s and u n s p e c i f i e d p s y c h i c  g o a l s t o be i n c l u d e d as w e l l as m a t e r i a l p r o f i t s .  Again, however, t h i s  r a i s e s t h e problem o f u n f a l s i f i a b l e p r e d i c t i o n s i n t h a t t h e outcome chosen i s by d e f i n i t i o n the outcome p r e f e r r e d . One proposed  methodological s o l u t i o n t o the ordering o f m u l t i p l e  g o a l s i s t h e t e c h n i q u e o f c a r d i n a l measurement o f u t i l i t y under r i s k . U t i l i t y p r e f e r e n c e s can be l o g i c a l l y measured on an o r d i n a l s c a l e simple comparison p r o c e d u r e s .  through  The f u r t h e r r e f i n e m e n t o f ' u t i l i t y under  r i s k ' , i n v o l v i n g f o r c e d c h o i c e under t h e p r o b a b i l i t y o f n o t g e t t i n g a commodity, a c h i e v e s a m e t r i c s c a l e o f measurement  (Coleman 1964, 67-8).  The t h e o r e t i c a l weakness o f t h i s approach i s t h a t i t i s e s s e n t i a l l y static.  P r e f e r e n c e o r d e r i n g i s c o n c e p t u a l i z e d as f i x e d , w i t h the problem  o f p r e d i c t i o n b e i n g one o f c o r r e c t w e i g h t i n g .  I t does n o t c o n s i d e r the  c o n d i t i o n s under which t h i s o r d e r i n g might v a r y .  Katona q u e s t i o n s the  p o s s i b i l i t y o f ever d e v e l o p i n g a u n i d i m e n s i o n a l o r d e r o f p r e f e r e n c e s when many v a r i a b l e s a r e i n v o l v e d (1964, 61). T h i s c r i t i c i s m i s borne out by t h e problems encountered  i n attitude scaling.  i m p o s s i b l e t o c o n s t r u c t a symmetrical, of  attitudes.  1958,  I t has proven  t r a n s i t i v e , unidimensional  People a r e n o t c o n s i s t e n t enough i n t h e i r c h o i c e s  ch. 12; Coombs 1953, 417-535).  1  scale (Torgerson  Simon c i t e s one study u s i n g  simple  ~*"See f o r example, Torgerson's d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e problem o f v e r y poor f i t t o t h e d a t a a c h i e v e d by Guttman scalogram t e c h n i q u e s ; o r Coombs' p a r a l l e l o g r a m procedure. Both a r e d e s i g n e d t o s c a l e a t t i t u d i n a l d a t a on a s i n g l e , o r d i n a l continuum (1958, 298-359). See a l s o Coombs' d i s c u s s i o n of t h e c o n c e p t u a l weaknesses o f many s c a l i n g t e c h n i q u e s . They a r b i t r a r i l y impose t r a n s i t i v i t y and/or u n i d i m e n s i o n a l i t y onto c h o i c e s , by v i r t u e o f the i n h e r e n t s t r u c t u r e o f the measurement procedures themselves (1953, 417-535).  16  l o t t e r y tickets i n which behaviour did approximate the assumption of a single preference ordering. the less this was true.  But the more r e a l i s t i c the choice situation,  Choice among phonograph records, f o r example,  was f a r less consistent (Simon 1967,  201-221).  Such inconsistency can  be interpreted as the subjects 'wanting' to maximize, but erring.  The  more r e a l i s t i c interpretation i s that i n a complex choice situation the formula of u t i l i t y maximization  i s of l i t t l e relevance.  The measurement  of u t i l i t i e s i s of limited value unless people's choice of 'A' over and \B' over C* 1  future.  'B  1  can provide a basis f o r predicting t h e i r choices i n the  In p r a c t i c e , t h e i r preferences may  fluctuate with d i f f e r e n t  contexts, d i f f e r e n t external conditions, new  experiences, and so on.  Individuals may have multiple interests and values which may and be i n c o n f l i c t i n a p a r t i c u l a r decision.  change,  The alternative t h e o r e t i c a l  approach suggested here i s to incorporate the recognition that preferences do fluctuate as an e x p l i c i t part of a theory of choice behaviour.  In  terms of this perspective, the c r i t i c a l t h e o r e t i c a l concern i s not with measurement of preferences at the point of choice. of those factors which may  I t i s with  examination  influence preference ordering throughout  the  decision process, and the attention and weighting which i s given to d i f f e r e n t dimensions of the options raised.  Summary.  Determination of Choice Parameters Theories of choice derived from the axiom of r a t i o n a l action  have encountered  a series of d i f f i c u l t i e s i n predicting choice under  varying conditions of indeterminateness i n parameter values. have been proposed to weaken the s t r i c t l o g i c a l requirements  Modifications of the axiom  under such conditions, but these have not appreciably improved i t s  17  predictive u t i l i t y .  They have largely f a i l e d to break out of the tauto-  l o g i c a l c i r c l e of reasoning i n which parameter values are deduced from the choices made.  I t i s suggested here that this apparent f a i l u r e re-  f l e c t s an inadequate theory of choice, i n which parameters are conceptualized simply as fixed exogenous terms which need to be measured.  In  the alternative approach proposed here, i t i s p r e c i s e l y these parameters which comprise the c r i t i c a l variables to be explained i n the theory of choice.  The axiom serves only to i d e n t i f y the l o g i c a l r e l a t i o n between  parameters. Choice Parameters i n a Social Context This second section considers theories which attempt to apply the axiom of r a t i o n a l action to the prediction of choices where more than one i n d i v i d u a l i s involved.  The s o c i a l context of choice i s i n -  corporated into the axiom through the recognition that f o r many choices the actions and reactions of others, i n e f f e c t t h e i r choices, constitute elements of the parameters which bound an individual's choice. recognition compounds the problems already encountered mining parameter values of choice.  This  above of deter-  Theories of choice i n a s o c i a l  context may be divided into two main kinds; those which focus exclusively on an i n d i v i d u a l i n a competitive interaction s i t u a t i o n , and those which are concerned with p o l i c y choices made by groups of individuals. Game Theory Theories which adopt the f i r s t approach may be loosely combined under the general heading of game theory.  The objective of the games i s  to predict r a t i o n a l choice as an optimal strategy for an i n d i v i d u a l i n  18  competitive i n t e r a c t i o n situations.  The basic assumption made i s that  each actor, or player, seeks to maximize h i s own s e l f i n t e r e s t . Attempts to apply the formula of game theory have generally f a i l e d to achieve predictive u t i l i t y for  the choice equation.  i n the sense of defining a single outcome Their application to more elaborate games and  interaction situations has forced successive modifications i n the i n i t i a l tenets of the axiom.  I t w i l l be argued below that the major  weakness i n these approaches l i e s i n the i n i t i a l conceptualization of the actions of others as 'external constraints' on i n d i v i d u a l choice. The actions of others are taken into account, but as s t r i c t l y exogenous terms i n the explanation of i n d i v i d u a l choice.  They are summed, along  with a l l other factors, under the general headings of perceived 'costs' and 'benefits' which go to make up the s t a t i c choice equation.  This  approach p a r a l l e l s the limitations of theories described above which treat parameters of choice as fixed values which can be measured. Game theory was f i r s t c l e a r l y formulated i n the work of Von Neumann and Morgenstern (1947).  The simplest i n t e r a c t i v e model which  they propose i s that of a s t r i c t l y competitive zero-sum game between two persons, i n which one gains a l l and the other loses a l l .  In this  highly s i m p l i f i e d s i t u a t i o n the axiom 'works' i n that an optimal outcome can be predicted.  The game s p e c i f i e s such r e s t r i c t i n g assumptions that  i t has limited a p p l i c a b i l i t y t o p r a c t i c a l choice situations.  Game  theory has subsequently been extended to more general models of two or more persons whose goals are not t o t a l l y opposed.  They have p o t e n t i a l l y  broader application, but i t i s here that the weaknesses of the underlying theory become more apparent.  These weaknesses are r e f l e c t e d i n the  19  f a i l u r e of the games to predict a solution. strategy  There i s no optimal  (Rapoport 1964, 393-402; Shubik 1964, 31-50). In the simplest non-zero-sum game with only two persons the  optimal strategy i s less obvious, although s t i l l l o g i c a l l y f i x e d . Game theory can predict an outcome, but only through introducing an important modification into the o r i g i n a l axiom.  A t y p i c a l game of this  type i s one i n which two players are required to choose between two options, such as a red or green object, not knowing what the other w i l l choose.  The rules of the game specify that i f both choose green, both  are paid one d o l l a r .  I f both choose red, both lose one d o l l a r .  But  i f one chooses red, and the other green, then the f i r s t player receives two d o l l a r s from his opponent.  I t appears to be i n the s e l f - i n t e r e s t of  one person to choose red since he stands to gain two d o l l a r s , but i f both do t h i s , both lose.  In t h i s case the optimum solution e n t a i l s  consideration not of s e l f - i n t e r e s t alone but of j o i n t i n t e r e s t .  I t can  be handled by the model only i n an i n d i r e c t form since the best i n t e r e s t of the partner must be e x p l i c i t l y introduced into the c a l c u l a t i o n of consequences. The importance of this modification i s emphasized by a s l i g h t l y more complex version of this game known as the 'prisoners' dilemma'. If both prisoners t r u s t each other i t i s i n their own best i n t e r e s t to plead innocent  and go free.  But i f one cannot t r u s t the other i t i s  best to plead g u i l t y and implicate the other i n order to escape maximum punishment.  In this game there i s no simple optimal solution or choice  for an i n d i v i d u a l actor.  I t requires consideration of the character of  relations between the two p a r t i c i p a n t s , past experience of trustworthiness,  20  awareness o f the v a l u e s o f the o t h e r , and so on.  These v a r i a b l e s are  n o t i n c o r p o r a t e d i n t o the model. The e x t e n s i o n o f game theory t o s i t u a t i o n s i n v o l v i n g t h r e e o r more persons a g a i n f a i l s t o o f f e r a s o l u t i o n .  The  formula i s m o d i f i e d  to p r e d i c t t h a t a chooser w i l l s e l e c t t h a t c o a l i t i o n which w i l l maximize the d i f f e r e n c e between the demands o f the c o a l i t i o n members and r e t u r n s from the environment.  potential  This p r e s c r i p t i o n gives r i s e to consider-  a b l e a m b i g u i t i e s i n a p p l i c a t i o n and can p r e d i c t no c l e a r s t r a t e g y o f self-interest.  An example o f such a game i s one  i n which the m a j o r i t y d e c i d e s who d o l l a r , and who  benefits.  game, p l a y e r s 'A'  and  must f o r f e i t payment, such as  The r u l e s p e r m i t any b a r g a i n i n g .  'B' may  j o i n a c o a l i t i o n and  them the d o l l a r a t f i f t y c e n t s each. does n o t end h e r e .  I t i s now  and o f f e r a 60/40 s p l i t .  i n v o l v i n g t h r e e persons  force  then o f f e r  In such a  'C  t o pay  However, the c o a l i t i o n s t r a t e g y  i n the i n t e r e s t s o f ' C  But then the l o s e r  'B , 1  to j o i n with  can b e n e f i t  o f f e r i n g a 70/30 s p l i t t o 'A' t o j o i n him and d e s e r t ' C . l o s e r may  one  'B' a 50/50 s p l i t t o d e s e r t 'A'.  The  'A'  from new  Logically,  such  a r e s h u f f l i n g o f c o a l i t i o n s can' go on i n d e f i n i t e l y w i t h no-one winning f o r more than a b r i e f p e r i o d .  T u l l o c k attempts  t o a p p l y the l o g i c o f  such games t o a more p r a c t i c a l example o f independent  farmers v o t i n g  on p r o p e r t y taxes t o m a i n t a i n the l o c a l roads which l i n k t h e i r farms w i t h major s t a t e roads.  Each farmer i s i n t e r e s t e d i n m a i n t a i n i n g the  s e c t i o n o f l o c a l road which he uses, but has no d i r e c t i n t e r e s t i n p a y i n g taxes t o improve roads o n l y used by o t h e r farmers.  However, a  m a j o r i t y vote o f a l l l o c a l farmers i s needed f o r any t a x e s t o be f o r road r e p a i r s .  T u l l o c k demonstrates  that l o g r o l l i n g or  levied  coalition  21  v o t i n g i s necessary  t o o b t a i n such a m a j o r i t y v o t e , but he can  devise  no s t a b l e o r o p t i m a l system o f b a r g a i n i n g which would ensure t h a t a l l farmers  get t h e i r s e c t i o n of road r e p a i r e d .  I t i s always i n the  i n t e r e s t s of farmers whose s e c t i o n has been r e p a i r e d f u r t h e r motion f o r t a x a t i o n t o r e p a i r roads concludes  t o vote down any  i n other areas.  Tullock  " I t seems c l e a r t h a t the system of m a j o r i t y v o t i n g i s not  any means an o p t i m a l method f o r a l l o c a t i n g r e s o u r c e s . l e s s o n would appear t o be the need f o r f u r t h e r r e s e a r c h "  The  by  primary  (1969,  178).  In e f f e c t , the type o f gamesmanship p r e s c r i b e d by the axiom i n the s i m p l e s t zero-sum game i s d i s a s t r o u s i n these more complex s i t u a t i o n s . They r e q u i r e d i f f e r e n t s t r a t e g i e s from those based on a p r i v a t e s e l f i n t e r e s t focus.  S o l i d a r i t y based on c o l l e c t i v e i n t e r e s t s may  be g i v e n p r e f e r e n c e , even though t h i s may opponent.  The  have t o  involve trusting a potential  e l a b o r a t i o n o f the axiom of r a t i o n a l a c t i o n i n game  theory f a i l s to p r o v i d e an adequate e x p l a n a t i o n , o r even d e s c r i p t i o n o f c h o i c e behaviour,  i n the c o n t e x t o f s o c i a l  I t i s suggested  interaction.  here t h a t t h i s f a i l u r e i s not due  even p r i m a r i l y t o the complexity  of the i s s u e s i n v o l v e d .  solely  or  It reflects  the same b a s i c c o n c e p t u a l weaknesses of the e a r l i e r m o d i f i c a t i o n s des c r i b e d above. peoples'  D e s p i t e the r e c o g n i t i o n of the r e l e v a n c e o f o t h e r  a c t i o n s t o c h o i c e behaviour  of one  i n d i v i d u a l , the models of  game t h e o r y are f o r m u l a t e d e n t i r e l y from the p e r s p e c t i v e o f one and  they focus o n l y on the s t a t i c p o i n t of c h o i c e .  people  are considered at a l l ,  terms o r  I n s o f a r as  chooser, other  they are c o n c e p t u a l i z e d simply as exogenous  'givens' of the environment.  No t h e o r e t i c a l a n a l y s i s i s  attempted o f the p r o c e s s of i n t e r a c t i o n between p l a y e r s i n a game, o r  22  possible ways of exerting mutual influence over choices. of c o a l i t i o n formation  The analysis  as a s e l f - i n t e r e s t choice made at one point i n  time breaks down as soon as i t i s applied to choice i n a s i t u a t i o n of on-going i n t e r a c t i o n .  The f a i l u r e of the games to reach a 'rational'  solution indicates the l i m i t a t i o n s of theories of choice i n s o c i a l contexts which are based s o l e l y on the axiom of r a t i o n a l action. formulation permits the actions of others  The  'when known' to be taken  into account by the chooser as a parameter value, but i t excludes consideration of how such actions come to be known and structured.  The  web of diverse i n t e r e s t s and mutual influence i n which the p a r t i c i p a n t s are emeshed constitute c r i t i c a l aspects of such actions which these games f a i l to consider.  An alternative t h e o r e t i c a l approach which i s  proposed here focuses attention on the longer term pattern of i n t e r relations between p a r t i c i p a n t s , and on the c l a r i f i c a t i o n of those mechanisms through which individuals may exert influence over the choices of others. An empirical study of four s p e c i f i c choices by Cyert, D i l l , and March, i s of s p e c i a l i n t e r e s t i n terms of this perspective  (1964, 288-314).  The authors describe the manner i n which both subgroups within a business firm and external i n t e r e s t groups influenced the parameters of choices facing the managers.  The authors challenge the abstract concept of  maximization by pointing out that i n a l l four cases the number of a l t e r natives considered was very small r e l a t i v e to those o b j e c t i v e l y possible. These were selected primarily because some group i n the organization was already predisposed  towards them.  The only c r i t e r i o n for pushing these  preferences was f e a s i b i l i t y , not optimality.  Consultants  had vested  23  interests i n promoting only a few options which they f e l t they could most e a s i l y ' s e l l ' to the manager i n question.  The case studies also  i l l u s t r a t e the close i n t e r a c t i o n between desires and expectations i n forming estimates of costs and benefits.  The 'expert consulting  firm' d e l i b e r a t e l y altered the presentation of cost estimates on d i f f e r ent alternatives to favour t h e i r own preferred option  (ibid 310).  This  f l e x i b i l i t y was made possible by the fact that expected costs and returns were measured with reference to a number of d i f f e r e n t dimensions. They were not r e a d i l y reducible to a single index. concerning renovation of old accident.  equipment  A further decision  was f i r s t prompted by a serious  When this happened the safety advantages of new equipment  were given p r i o r i t y emphasis.  They were not discussed i n d o l l a r terms  and early cost estimates were encouragingly  o p t i m i s t i c . However, as  time passed and the management's concern with the accident receded, cost estimates were repeatedly expanded, and the project was shelved 292-7).  (ibid  The information on costs appeared to be so decentralized that  no one individual had even a rough idea of the t o t a l o v e r a l l cost. When d e t a i l s were sought every new group brought i n costs and advantages that other groups had not thought of. These case studies i l l u s t r a t e the p o t e n t i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e of 'external' interests i n defining choice. simply  The actions of others are not  'factors to be taken into account' by the chooser.  In these  instances they served to d i r e c t l y influence the chooser's perception of the choice parameters which he considered.  These descriptive insights  have central relevance for the t h e o r e t i c a l approach to choice behaviour proposed here, i n that they d i r e c t attention to the examination of  24  mechanisms through which individuals and i n t e r e s t groups may influence the structuring of choice parameters for others.  These issues have  s p e c i a l significance i n the analysis of p o l i c y decisions made by groups of individuals, which are considered below. Application to Group Choices The  limited p r e d i c t i v e u t i l i t y of theorems of r a t i o n a l action i s  especially apparent i n attempts to apply them to choices exercised by groups of people rather than a separate i n d i v i d u a l . The simplest  approach has been to conceptualize such groups as  analogous to an i n d i v i d u a l , and thus to impute to i t a single set of interests and preference ordering  for alternatives.  Business organiza-  tions i n p a r t i c u l a r lend themselves to such a formulation i n economic theory.  They can be conceptualized as units or 'economic men' i n a  competitive market s i t u a t i o n .  While useful for some purposes, t h i s  approach bypasses the problem that any organization  comprises a c o l l e c -  tion of individuals with objects which may not always coincide with the o f f i c i a l one. The assumed unity of purpose bypasses the d i f f i c u l t question of the processes by which t h i s mixture of individuals generate a single preference ordering which i s then attributed to the group unit at the point of action.  By the same token t h i s approach cannot account  for any variations i n p o l i c y , except through recourse to ad hoc acknowledgement of impinging interests which may d i s t o r t the economic e f f i c i e n c y of p a r t i c u l a r firms. An alternative approach which can be loosely termed 'welfare economics', represents an attempt to apply concepts of r a t i o n a l choice  25  and maximization  to s o c i a l contexts which e x p l i c i t l y include multiple  individuals with d i f f e r e n t preferences.  The maximal or "optimal s o c i a l  welfare function" was i n i t i a l l y defined as the sum or aggregate of the u t i l i t i e s of a l l constituent individuals.  Serious objections to this  d e f i n i t i o n have been raised on methodological and l o g i c a l grounds. The most prominent c r i t i c i s m i s that i t lacks any operational s i g n i f i cance.  L o g i c a l l y such a function requires the interpersonal comparison  of cardinal u t i l i t i e s of d i f f e r e n t individuals, expressed i n terms of a common dimension.  But as yet there exists no operational procedure  by which such knowledge can be gained  (Lange 1 9 6 9 , 3 2 ) . In accordance  with the d e f i n i t i o n of optimal s o c i a l welfare, public p o l i c y i s set the task of s a t i s f y i n g the preferences of the i n d i v i d u a l members of the society, but i t provides no guide as to how such p o l i c y might be attained.  As Harsanyi comments, " i n welfare economics we have  found  that a r a t i o n a l man (whose choices s a t i s f y certain simple postulates of r a t i o n a l i t y and impartiality) must  act as i f he made quantitative  interpersonal comparisons of u t i l i t y , even i f his factual information i s i n s u f f i c i e n t to do t h i s on an objective basis  (1969,  6 0 ) .  Various kinds of voting and vote-bargaining procedures have been proposed as a p o t e n t i a l method for a r r i v i n g at an optimal s o c i a l choice which i s derived from the preferences of individuals.  I t can  be demonstrated, however, that when members of a group are asked to rank order several d i s t i n c t alternatives, no necessary optimal or majority preference may exerge.  In e f f e c t , there i s no f i x e d s o c i a l  welfare function, and neither p l u r a l i t y voting nor proportional representation w i l l remove t h i s paradox (Arrow 1 9 6 9 , 1 6 3 ; Black 1 9 6 9 , 1 4 1 ) .  26  Arrow continues that under such circumstances the customary study of maximal states under i n d i v i d u a l i s t i c assumptions i s p o i n t l e s s .  The  solution must be either imposed or dictated on the basis of some convention.  The adoption of an imposed solution raises the c r i t i c a l  question of "optimal for whom?".  Any such solution l i e s outside the  scope of a s t r i c t l y defined optimal s o c i a l welfare function.  Lange  suggests that the issue can be avoided by delegating to some agency of the organized community, such as Congress, the task of assigning a s o c i a l evaluation to i n d i v i d u a l u t i l i t i e s , but t h i s amounts to a restatement of the problem rather than i t s solution.  Optimal  social  welfare becomes simply the optimal preference of members of the agency, however t h i s i s derived.  I t provides no answer to the problem of how  such an agency might s o l i c i t and evaluate u t i l i t i e s of d i f f e r e n t i n dividuals i n the t o t a l p o l i t y . A further conceptual problem i n this d e f i n i t i o n of an optimal s o c i a l welfare function  i s that i t e x p l i c i t l y ascribes equal weighting  to the preferences of a l l constituent i n d i v i d u a l s . contributes independently to the sum or aggregate  Each i n d i v i d u a l s o c i a l welfare.  Carried to i t s l o g i c a l conclusion i t i s inconsistent with any inequali t i e s i n d i s t r i b u t i o n of incomes and benefits.  With any departure from  this i d e a l the optimal s o c i a l welfare function becomes a r b i t r a r y .  As a  p r e s c r i p t i o n f o r p o l i c y the formula i s unworkable except under extremely l i m i t i n g conditions.  As Feldman and Kanter argue, p r e s c r i p t i o n s f o r  decision-making based on such an approach would be disastrous f o r any organization.  Individual preferences may have high potency but t h e i r  s e l f - f u l f i l m e n t i n a l l t h e i r diverse manifestations would destroy an  27  organization i f there were no counter pressures policy  (1965, 637).  to assert a c o l l e c t i v e  Concepts of c o a l i t i o n and bargaining have been  introduced i n an attempt to derive a weighted optimal welfare from diverse i n t e r e s t s .  Individuals may  d i f f e r e n t bundles of commodities. conceptualized  function  be seen as voting between  S i m i l a r l y an organization may  be  as a p o l i t i c a l c o a l i t i o n with a set of would-be p a r t i c i -  pants who  make varying demands on the system as the p r i c e for a  coalition  (March 1962,  662-678).  As noted above, however, s e l f - i n t e r e s t  c o a l i t i o n s can provide no necessarily stable or optimal solution which w i l l ensure the r e l a t i v e s a t i s f a c t i o n of a l l p a r t i c i p a n t s .  Nor does  this approach resolve the problem of the i n f i n i t e number of p o t e n t i a l interested p a r t i e s which i d e a l l y need to be accommodated i n any such solution or p o l i c y .  Concern with diverse preferences  cannot be  to a formal organization i n i s o l a t i o n from i t s environment.  confined  The  en-  vironment i t s e l f comprises a network of interdependent i n t e r e s t groups which seek to influence the operations of the organization.  Their  'exclusion' necessarily e n t a i l s deviation from the l o g i c a l d e f i n i t i o n of an optimal s o c i a l welfare  function.  Again i t forces consideration of  imposed solutions, and the mechanisms through which p a r t i c u l a r interests are incorporated and others subordinated  i n any such solution.  At this  point the issue changes from one of determining optimal s o c i a l welfare to the issue of "optimal for whom?". The problems incurred i n the operationalization of an s o c i a l welfare function as the sum of i n d i v i d u a l preferences  optimal  has prompted  i t r e d e f i n i t i o n i n terms of a weaker c r i t e r i o n of 'no i n j u r y ' .  According  to t h i s modified d e f i n i t i o n optimal s o c i a l welfare i s achieved when  28  conditions cannot be changed so as to increase the welfare one i n d i v i d u a l without decreasing  that of another.  ( u t i l i t y ) of  The s o c i a l welfare  function i s an increasing function of the u t i l i t i e s of i n d i v i d u a l s , with one state being preferable to another only i f the achievement of one preference  i s greater and none i s l e s s .  In an i d e a l s i t u a t i o n , i f  one alternative i s preferred over another by at least one person, while a l l others are i n d i f f e r e n t , then that alternative i s s o c i a l l y preferable. This formulation does avoid the requirement of optimizing a l l i n d i v i d u a l preferences  i n any p o l i c y decision but only at the p r i c e of  incorporating serious conceptual weaknesses.  In terms of the theorem  the i n i t i a l d i s t r i b u t i o n of shares of any preferred commodity, including income, i s completely a r b i t r a r y .  Any given d i s t r i b u t i o n can be seen as  f i t t i n g the optimal condition, i n that an increase i n the shares to any one person e n t a i l s a corresponding decrease i n shares to another.  The  theorem gives the solution as the condition under which a poor man's u t i l i t y cannot be increased any more without diminishing the r i c h man's utility  (and vice versa) but the l e v e l at which the r i c h man's u t i l i t y  i s held constant i s a r b i t r a r y (Lange 1969, 29).  This e n t a i l s that the  issues of s t r a t i f i c a t i o n and r e l a t i v e equity i n the d i s t r i b u t i o n of incomes or benefits become an i n t e g r a l part of the s o c i a l welfare  function.  Otherwise the proposed modification provides no optimal solution or guide to p o l i c y .  Again, t h i s raises the question of "Optimal for whom?".  Moreover, as Arrow points out, there i s no reason for confining the range of possible s o c i a l actions to those which w i l l injure no-one as compared with the i n i t i a l s i t u a t i o n , unless the status quo i s to be s a n c t i f i e d on e t h i c a l grounds (1969, 149).  29  The formulation ignores the i n i t i a l question of how  individual  preferences may be a r t i c u l a t e d and weighted i n r e l a t i o n to p o l i c y .  It  also leaves unanswered the question of how expressed preferences may be converted into p o l i c y .  Even i n the i d e a l case of an  alternative  which i s preferred by one person with a l l others i n d i f f e r e n t , there i s no a p r i o r i assurance that this preference w i l l be i n s t i t u t e d by 'indifferent' p o l i c y makers. welfare economics theorems.  Such issues f a l l outside the domain of Without t h e i r inclusion the concept of  optimal group choice has no operational significance. The t h e o r e t i c a l issues which r e l a t e  to formation of policy by  a group of individuals are fundamentally the same as f o r the formation of choices by individuals.  These concern whose preferences are l i k e l y  to be a r t i c u l a t e d as potential alternatives  for p o l i c y , which preferences  are l i k e l y to be considered by policy-makers and the r e l a t i v e weighting they may be given.  In turn these raise the c r i t i c a l consideration of  the mechanisms through which certain interest groups may  influence the  choice of policy-makers while other interests are subordinated.  The  outcome may bear no l o g i c a l or necessary r e l a t i o n to the d e f i n i t i o n of an optimal s o c i a l welfare function as the expression of the sum of i n d i v i d u a l preferences. In conclusion, special consideration i s given here to the formulation presented by Belshaw i n The Conditions of Social Performance, as one of the most concerted attempts i n the l i t e r a t u r e to carry through the l o g i c a l implications choices.  of the theorem of r a t i o n a l action f o r s o c i e t a l  The very thoroughness with which t h i s i s undertaken makes  t h i s presentation a c r i t i c a l i l l u s t r a t i o n of the limitations of this  30  approach as a basis for predictive theory.  Belshaw sets out to provide  a framework of s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l variables that a f f e c t s o c i a l performance.  He states as the primary objective of his work the develop-  ment of indicators to measure such elements  These indicators w i l l  hopefully provide a comparative p r o f i l e of the performance of d i f f e r e n t cultures or p o l i t i e s .  Throughout the text he explores systematically  the abstract r e l a t i o n between variables, or what are i n e f f e c t the parameters of r a t i o n a l choice, as they apply w i t i n a p o l i t y or group writ large.  He proposes f i r s t l y , a behavioural p r o f i l e of culture,  comprising an inventory  of a l l goals to which a population  i t s e l f i n a one-year period.  committed  The inventory of such goals further pro-  vides an i n d i c a t i o n of values or preference orderings for that p o l i t y . The addition of aspirations or future goals provides a p a r t i a l basis for an inventory  of costs as aspirations forgone.  A further  of the knowledge and s k i l l s available within a community and materials which are perceived  the need to measure the v e l o c i t y of c i r c u l a t i o n of ideas as  taken.  any  as having u t i l i t y within that culture  provides a measure of the resources available for action.  to innovation  inventory  He proposes contributing  or an expansion of the alternatives considered and under-  Lastly he advocates an indicator of role-complete groups as a  basis for inclusion of actors i n the achievement of p a r t i c u l a r actions or goals.  Belshaw concludes with the expressed concern that t h i s  framework w i l l provide a basis for further investigation, which endeavours to be as economical as possible i n the selection of variables, and  yet  will.enable the influence of changes i n the force of variables to be traced  (129).  The major task for the immediate future he sees as the  31  design of appropriate and manageable indicators of these elements of performance. This formulation i s valuable i n providing a t r a n s l a t i o n of the parameters of r a t i o n a l i n d i v i d u a l action to the l e v e l of the p o l i t y , and a statement of the framework of elements which need to be incorporated at this l e v e l .  The p r e d i c t i v e u t i l i t y of the formulation i n r e l a t i o n to  actions of a p o l i t y , however, i s limited by the same conceptual  diffi-  c u l t i e s already noted with respect to theories derived from the axiom as applied to i n d i v i d u a l choice.  In p a r t i c u l a r , i t i s limited by the pre-  occupation with measuring parameters of performance rather than with their prediction.  Throughout the text emphasis i s on the construction  of indicators to measure elements of performance, rather than upon the mechanisms which•determine t h e i r measured value at any one time.  The  behavioural p r o f i l e provides a measure of interests which have gained prominence within a p o l i t y but does not incorporate any assessment of the mechanisms through which c e r t a i n goals are promoted, or through which other p o t e n t i a l goals are excluded.  S i m i l a r l y the inventory of  v e l o c i t y of communication does not incorporate consideration of the mechanisms which determine patterns of communication as an aspect of r e l a t i o n s , or as an aspect of power to influence elements i n performance. Concepts of power and organization are introduced, i n recognition of their r o l e i n coordinating a c t i v i t i e s to achieve performance, but they are not related to the mechanisms through which elements of performance might be altered.  The inventory of role-complete  groups promises to  provide a measure of inclusion, but does not incorporate consideration of the mechanisms which determine i n c l u s i o n or exclusion of subgroup  32  interests from p o l i c y formation within a p o l i t y .  The concept of change  introduced i n this formulation r e l i e s on the same underlying l o g i c a l r e l a t i o n between parameters as for individual choice.  The formulation  demonstrates that changes i n the measured values of any one of these elements or parameters has implications for the performance of a p o l i t y , but i t does not escape the t a u t o l o g i c a l nature of such r e l a t i o n s .  As  such, the formulation has descriptive, but not predictive u t i l i t y . The alternative approach proposed here u t i l i z e s the concepts of r e l a t i o n a l aspects of choice i n a p o l i t y , but departs from this formulation or framework i n a d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n from that advocated by the author.  The primary concern i s not with development of indicators  to measure elements i n performance.  Concern i s with the c l a r i f i c a t i o n  of mechanisms which structure the parameters of p o l i c y decisions within a community. Conclusion A reformulation of decision-making theory i s proposed here which applies to prediction of choices by individuals and also to p o l i c y decisions by any group of persons.  In both cases the axiom of r a t i o n a l  action i s incorporated as a basic assumption which serves to i d e n t i f y the parameters of choice and the l o g i c a l r e l a t i o n s between them.  The  measurement of such parameters and the r e l a t i o n s between them as aspects of r a t i o n a l i t y i n choice behaviour are not the focus of analysis.  Concern  i s with the examination of mechanisms which structure the parameters of choice.  With respect to choice by an i n d i v i d u a l , this focus e n t a i l s  examination of the mechanisms which influence the range of alternatives  33  l i k e l y to be presented and considered, the chooser's appreciation of their varied consequences and weighting of uncertainties i n the l i k e l y outcome of actions, and also of the variables which may influence the chooser's preference ordering.  The same approach applies to the  analysis of p o l i c y decisions a f f e c t i n g groups of individuals or communities as a whole.  Concepts of power are incorporated as funda-  mental aspects of these mechanisms which influence choice parameters. The objective of this approach i s not to predict choice as a single act'in time, but to predict the structuring of those parameters i n terms of which choices can be made.  Decision-Making  as a Social Process  The theory proposed below i d e n t i f i e s three primary mechanisms which influence the formation of choice parameters i n a s o c i a l context. The f i r s t i s the flow of information throughout  a community.  This may  a f f e c t the range of alternatives known to d i f f e r e n t individuals and also t h e i r possible consequences and modes of implementation. second mechanism i s persuasion.  The  Once some information i s received, the  c r e d i b i l i t y of d i f f e r e n t sources may a f f e c t the interpretation of such information by those receiving i t . input f a c i l i t i e s .  The t h i r d mechanism i s control over  The d i s t r i b u t i o n of f a c i l i t i e s needed for implement-  ing favoured alternatives may d i r e c t l y a f f e c t t h e i r f e a s i b i l i t y f o r different individuals.  Each of these three mechanisms which structure  choice parameters may vary widely with the p o s i t i o n of d i f f e r e n t i n dividuals i n the s o c i a l hierarchy of a community.  For those d i f f e r -  e n t i a l l y advantaged with respect to them, the choices open, even with respect to the same new proposals, may d i f f e r on a l l the parameters i n  34  terms of which a choice can be made.  The range of other alternatives  known and information about them, estimation of t h e i r l i k e l y consequences, and t h e i r perceived and apparent f e a s i b i l i t y , may  a l l be d i f f e r e n t .  Where this i s true, any explanation for v a r i a t i o n i n response i n terms of d i f f e r e n t i a l preferences or psychological orientation towards innovation cannot be asserted. Furthermore, these mechanisms do not constitute 'givens' of the s o c i a l context but i n turn are subject to influence and p o t e n t i a l control.  These individuals s t r a t e g i c a l l y placed with respect to control  over, and access to media f o r information flow, who prestige, or who  command positions of  control important material f a c i l i t i e s , are i n a p o s i t i o n  to d i r e c t l y influence the choice parameters of others within the community.  In the examination of these processes as they relate to i n -  dividual choice, i t i s necessary to take into account c r i t i c a l aspects of power i n s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s , and how the choices open to others.  the exercise of t h i s power affects  The concept of 'power' i n t h i s context,  i s defined as "the a b i l i t y to exert influence over the structuring of choice parameters of others".  This may be through control over informa-  t i o n flow, persuasion, or control over access to necessary input facilities. The concept of power proposed here has some p a r a l l e l s with that put forward by Blau i n h i s analysis of exchange r e l a t i o n s .  His  starting assumption i s that " A l l individuals have a variety of ends which can only be achieved through interaction with others".  Hence  they must "motivate others to i n t e r a c t and o f f e r the resources sought" (1964, 4-5).  He i d e n t i f i e s power i n this exchange r e l a t i o n as '-the  35  a b i l i t y t o impose one's w i l l onto o t h e r s ' .  T h i s formula,  however,  d e f i n e s power o n l y i n terms o f u n i l a t e r a l dependence i n which one person  u t i l i z e s h i s monopoly c o n t r o l over needed r e s o u r c e s  the compliance o f o t h e r s concept  ( i b i d , Ch. 5 ) .  to force  In e f f e c t , t h i s monocausal  o f power reduces t o a b i - l a t e r a l zero-sum game.  I t cannot be  a p p l i e d beyond the s t r i n g e n t l y l i m i t i n g c o n d i t i o n s o f t o t a l dependence. The  outcome here i s l o g i c a l l y  f i x e d i n terms o f t h e c i r c u l a r o r t a u t o -  l o g i c a l p r o p o s i t i o n which d e f i n e s the power r e l a t i o n .  Should any  l o o p h o l e e x i s t i n t o t a l dependence ,the power r e l a t i o n , by d e f i n i t i o n , does n o t apply.  The formula merely comprises an e x t e n s i o n o f the axiom  o f r a t i o n a l a c t i o n d i s c u s s e d above.  Its u t i l i t y  i s further limited i n  t h a t i t c o n f i n e s a t t e n t i o n o n l y t o the most o v e r t form o f m a n i p u l a t i o n of e s s e n t i a l f a c i l i t i e s . s u b t l e r i n f l u e n c e s over  I t excludes  c h o i c e parameters o f o t h e r s , which may be  e q u a l l y d e c i s i v e i n 'imposing  Reformulation  from c o n s i d e r a t i o n the many  one's w i l l '  o f Theory: Decision-Making  onto o t h e r s .  as a S o c i a l  Process  The t h e o r y f o c u s e s on t h r e e major a s p e c t s o f the d e c i s i o n process r e l a t i n g t o information, persuasion,  and f e a s i b i l i t y .  These  t h r e e a s p e c t s are c l o s e l y i n t e r r e l a t e d i n s t r u c t u r i n g parameters o f choice within a s o c i a l  1)  Information The  context.  and Choice  first  a s p e c t o f the d e c i s i o n p r o c e s s  relates to reception  o f r e l e v a n t i n f o r m a t i o n i n the areas o f c h o i c e concerned.  The t h e o r -  e t i c a l problem i s t h a t o f s p e c i f y i n g the scope o f a l t e r n a t i v e s which e n t e r t h e f i e l d o f c h o i c e and what i s known about them.  This  entails  36  the analysis of systems of communication within a community which determine the amount and content of relevant information l i k e l y to reach d i f f e r e n t i n d i v i d u a l s .  Important variables are the primary  sources of information, means of communication, l o c i of p o t e n t i a l control over such means, and d i f f e r e n t i a l  access to various sectors  of a community. The central assumption made here i s that the a f f i l i a t i o n of those who control the flow of information, either as primary sources or as intermediaries, w i l l determine the amount, content, and bias i n information transmitted.  Three s p e c i f i c hypotheses derived from this  assumption are: 1) Where p a r t i c u l a r individuals control access to means of communication within a community, they w i l l encourage the access of close associates and status equals over other sectors of the community. 2) Where p a r t i c u l a r i n d i v i d u a l s function as intermediaries in the d i f f u s i o n of information within a community, they w i l l disseminate  information p r i m a r i l y to close associates  and status equals over other sectors of the community. 3) Intermediaries i n the d i f f u s i o n of information w i l l encourage the transmission of any information seen as supporting the objectives of close associates, and obstruct the transmission of information seen as opposed to such objectives. These hypotheses assume that r e l a t i o n s between close associates and status equals are more l i k e l y to be characterized by ease of contact and  37  i n t e r a c t i o n , and c o i n c i d e n c e o f i n t e r e s t s and e x p e r i e n c e s .  A l l such  f a c t o r s are l i k e l y to promote the s h a r i n g o f i n f o r m a t i o n . i s a l s o assumed.  Informants w i l l be p r e d i s p o s e d  The converse  to l i m i t  access  and  d i s s e m i n a t i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n t o r i v a l and h o s t i l e s e c t o r s o f a  community.  The c a p a c i t y o f any one informant  received  by o t h e r s  t o i n f l u e n c e the i n f o r m a t i o n  i s a f u n c t i o n o f the range o f r e l e v a n t i n f o r m a t i o n  available.  The more r e s t r i c t e d these  a r e the g r e a t e r w i l l be one i n -  formant's i n f l u e n c e over t h e c h o i c e s o f o t h e r s . promote v e s t e d access  i n t e r e s t s among informants  2)  T h i s may  in restricting  further independent  t o i n f o r m a t i o n as a means o f i n c r e a s i n g t h e i r p e r s o n a l i n f l u e n c e .  Such i n t e r e s t s may to  sources  strengthen  the p r e d i c t e d tendency t o c o n f i n e  access  close associates.  Persuasion  and Choice  The second a s p e c t o f the d e c i s i o n p r o c e s s o f new p r o p o s a l s  through i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d c o n c e r n i n g  t h e o r e t i c a l problem i s t h a t o f s p e c i f y i n g how be a s s e s s e d  relates to evaluation them.  The  information received w i l l  by the r e c i p i e n t , and the a t t e n t i o n i t w i l l be g i v e n i n  e s t i m a t i n g the v a l u e of new  proposals.  The c e n t r a l assumption made here i s t h a t a chooser's p e r c e p t i o n of t h e s o u r c e o f i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l determine h i s e v a l u a t i o n o f t h e p r o b a b l e q u a l i t y o f such i n f o r m a t i o n . d e r i v e d from t h i s •  The f i r s t  The f o l l o w i n g s p e c i f i c hypotheses a r e  assumption. two hypotheses concern a chooser's p e r c e p t i o n o f the  competence o f immediate a d v i s o r s on the i s s u e s i n q u e s t i o n . 4) When i n f o r m a t i o n on new p r o p o s a l s i n d i r e c t means, or from sources  i s r e c e i v e d through  whose apparent  competence  38  i s low, i t w i l l have less persuasive impact i n promoting innovation than when received d i r e c t l y from competent sources. 5) When information received i n new proposals i s fragmentary or vague,it w i l l have less persuasive impact i n promoting innovation than when information i s precise and detailed. The t h i r d hypothesis concerns a chooser's trust i n the motives and interests associated with new proposals. 6) When information on new proposals i s i n i t i a t e d from sources associated with previous c o n f l i c t s , i t w i l l have less persuasive impact i n promoting innovation than when such conf l i c t s are absent. The f i n a l hypothesis concerns perception of the p r a c t i c a l i t y of new proposals by the r e c i p i e n t . 7) When new proposals are i n i t i a t e d among a wealthier stratum of a community, they w i l l have less persuasive impact i n promoting innovation among recipients of progressively lower r e l a t i v e economic p o s i t i o n . The same assumption underlies each of these four hypotheses.  Low evalu-  ation of the guality of information received w i l l reduce an individual's willingness to act on such information, irrespective of the s p e c i f i c proposals raised.  3)  F e a s i b i l i t y and Choice The t h i r d aspect of the decision process relates to access to  a l l . i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s necessary f o r the implementation of new proposals. The t h e o r e t i c a l problem i s that of specifying the determinants of access  39  to any available f a c i l i t i e s by individuals d i f f e r e n t i a l l y situated within a community, and t h e i r a l l o c a t i o n between possible alternatives. The central assumption here i s that the a f f i l i a t i o n of those who  exercise control over input f a c i l i t i e s , either d i r e c t l y or through  t h e i r d i s t r i b u t i o n , w i l l determine p r i o r i t i e s i n access granted, the conditions of access, and t h e i r a l l o c a t i o n between competing alternatives.  The following s p e c i f i c hypotheses are derived from t h i s  assumption: 8) Persons who  exercise control over input f a c i l i t i e s w i l l  favour close associates i ) i n the extent of access, and i i ) i n the conditions under which access i s granted. 9) Where there are competing objectives for u t i l i z a t i o n of input f a c i l i t i e s , those who  control such f a c i l i t i e s w i l l  allocate them towards objectives which favour close associates. 10) Persons who  exercise control over input f a c i l i t i e s w i l l  obstruct access to them for any alternatives perceived  as  i n c o n f l i c t with the objectives of close associates. The condition placed on these hypotheses i s that those who  control  f a c i l i t i e s w i l l , i n turn, be influenced by the extent and d i r e c t i o n of any sanctions contingent upon the way  i n which f a c i l i t i e s are a l l o c a t e d .  This general theory assumes that individuals prefer to associate with others of s i m i l a r or homogeneous s o c i a l p o s i t i o n .  Within s i m i l a r  s t r a t a there i s a greater l i k e l i h o o d of congruent i n t e r e s t s , which i n turn favours frequent i n t e r a c t i o n and the exchange of r e c i p r o c a l services. A l l .such attributes are l i k e l y to promote the sharing of  information,  40  advice, and resources.  These concepts of close associates and  status  equals are operationalized i n terms of faction, caste, and class ranking in Indian v i l l a g e communities.  These terms are defined more p r e c i s e l y  in the following chapter-on methodology. Conclusion:  Theoretical  Objectives  The primary objective of t h i s proposed re-formulation  i s to  provide a broad t h e o r e t i c a l framework for the analysis of decision-making processes.  The hypotheses stated are not intended as an exhaustive  l i s t i n g of a l l mechanisms or strategies for exerting influence over choice parameters. may  They provide a p a r t i c u l a r focus for analysis which  subsequently be elaborated  and refined.  Blalock has pointed  out  that currently i n s o c i a l science l i t e r a t u r e there i s no shortage of propositions to be found r e l a t i n g to varied s o c i a l phenomena.  For  the  most part, i t i s possible to demonstrate that they 'have a bearing' the phenomenon i n question.  on  But i n the absence of a general t h e o r e t i c a l  framework l i n k i n g these disparate propositions, t h e i r p r a c t i c a l pred i c t i v e value i s l i m i t e d .  The alternative which Blalock advocates and  which i s attempted here, i s to concentrate f i r s t l y on the development of a broad causal model.  Such a model serves to block out classes of  variables.  Subsequently, i t i s possible to narrow the focus.  Certain  classes may  be selected for more intensive examination without losing  sight of the general significance of t h e i r p o s i t i o n i n r e l a t i o n to the t o t a l framework of the theory (Blalock 1967,  ch. 6).  Blau's concern  with dependence and compliance relations constitutes one such s p e c i a l i z e d focus.  Others include communications theory, cognitive  symbolic i n t e r a c t i o n theory, and so on.  perception,  The significance of these and  41  o t h e r b o d i e s o f t h e o r y i n the t o t a l d e c i s i o n - m a k i n g p r o c e s s can be determined through t h e i r r o l e i n s t r u c t u r i n g the c r i t i c a l  parameters  of choice. The f o l l o w i n g study examines some o f t h e s e s o c i a l p r o c e s s e s as they s t r u c t u r e c h o i c e b e h a v i o u r i n response t o development p r o j e c t s . T h i s a n a l y s i s i s c o n f i n e d t o v i l l a g e communities.  The  implications of  t h i s t h e o r y o f s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s as determinants o f c h o i c e parameters, however, c l e a r l y extend beyond these a r b i t r a r y b o u n d a r i e s .  CHAPTER TWO DECISION PROCESSES AND  RURAL DEVELOPMENT  The objective of Community Development Programmes i s to promote planned innovation within r u r a l communities.  They are d i r e c t l y  concerned  with structuring choice for i n d i v i d u a l v i l l a g e r s , and also for p o l i c y decisions which a f f e c t communities as a whole.  The organisation and  implementation of these programmes are b r i e f l y examined below with s p e c i a l reference to India.  The following review of current l i t e r a t u r e  indicates the relevance and implications of the proposed theory f o r decision processes i n this context, and the issues f o r analysis which are raised by s p e c i f i c Implementation  hypotheses.  of Programmes i n India  Community Development Blocks have been established throughout India, each Block encompassing roughly one hundred v i l l a g e s . team comprises a Senior Development O f f i c e r  The Block  (BDO), his assistants, and  multi-purpose f i e l d workers, variously known as Gram Sevaks or V i l l a g e level-workers (VLW's).  The administration of the Blocks i s designed to  operate i n close cooperation with elected councils or panchayats within the v i l l a g e s , and at d i s t r i c t l e v e l  (Subramaniam 1972, 98-9).  Additional  d i s t r i c t s were selected a f t e r 1967 f o r Intensive A g r i c u l t u r a l Development Programmes (IADP), these having increased provision of personnel and a g r i c u l t u r a l inputs.  The primary goal of the programmes i s to promote  modern a g r i c u l t u r a l technology associated with the "Green Revolution" i n  42  43  wheat and r i c e , but they also incorporate projects i n n u t r i t i o n , sanitation, family planning, supplementary employment, and provision of p u b l i c amenities within the v i l l a g e s . i  The o v e r a l l impact of these programmes appears to be small and highly l o c a l i z e d .  In aggregate figures for the country some  improvement i s evident i n the c r i t i c a l indicator of a g r i c u l t u r a l output. Food production i s estimated to have almost doubled during the period from 1950 to 1970, population.  but t h i s has barely kept pace with the increase i n  Much of the increase i n y i e l d has been attributed to i n -  creased acreage rather than improved a g r i c u l t u r a l techniques, A5), and further expansion promises to be more d i f f i c u l t .  (Abel  1970,  Traditional  methods of agriculture s t i l l appear to predominate over most of the country, and vagaries of weather are claimed to exert a greater influence on y i e l d s than the cumulative effort  (Mellor 1968,  3).  e f f e c t of twenty years of development  Localised studies of d i s t r i c t s selected for  intensive development e f f o r t s indicate that not infrequently a g r i c u l t u r a l output shows l i t t l e improvement over previous conditions, or over control d i s t r i c t s which lack such agencies 93-2;  Vyas 1970,  1-5).  (Desai 1972,  148-152; Brown  1971,  Secondary aspects of the programmes have achieved  generally less impact than a g r i c u l t u r e . The State of Uttar Pradesh, which i s the location of the present study, has been described as the most backward i n the country, - a State where " i n e r t i a to planned development has f i l t e r e d deep and wide" (Tewari 1970,  134).  Subsoil  water i s r e l a t i v e l y p l e n t i f u l throughout the State but most of i t remains untapped.  S o i l s are poor i n phosphorous and nitrogen and yet f e r t i l i z e r  consumption lags far behind recommended targets (ibid 137-8). .  44  Response t o the programmes appears t o be c o n c e n t r a t e d among a narrow stratum o f wealthy, l a r g e landowners. acknowledged t o be  The t e c h n o l o g y i s  'scale n e u t r a l ' , being p o t e n t i a l l y a p p l i c a b l e to  the s m a l l e s t p l o t o f l a n d , b u t i n p r a c t i c e the l a r g e landowners appear c o n s i s t e n t l y more l i k e l y t o adopt major i n n o v a t i o n s i n a g r i c u l t u r e t o d e r i v e s i g n i f i c a n t economic b e n e f i t s from the schemes 1970, A3; Vyas 1970,  4; J o s h i 1968,  458; F r a n k e l 1971,  and  (Majumdar  192-3).  They  are a c c l a i m e d by some a u t h o r s as the more p r o g r e s s i v e and e n t e r p r i s i n g s e c t o r o f the r u r a l communities, hence j u s t i f y i n g t h e c o n c e n t r a t i o n of development e f f o r t s upon such farmers i n o r d e r t o maximize r a t e s o f a g r i c u l t u r a l growth page 13).  (Majumdar 1970, A4-5;  Rogers e t a l .  1970, Ch.  8,  More widespread concern i s v o i c e d r e g a r d i n g the e f f e c t of  i n c r e a s i n g economic d i s p a r i t i e s i n promoting u n r e s t and p o l i t i c a l r a d i c a l i s m among the p o o r e r s t r a t a  (Brown 1970, 42; F r a n k e l 1971,  191-215).  They s t r e s s the u r g e n t need t o spread the b e n e f i t s o f development p r o grammes among t h e r u r a l p o o r i f major u p r i s i n g s a r e t o be a v o i d e d . F o r these a u t h o r s the Green R e v o l u t i o n s p e l l s not s a l v a t i o n from famine b u t a Pandora's box of t r o u b l e s  (Brown 1970, 42; Wharton  1969,  467).  C r i t i c a l i s s u e s f o r a n a l y s i s i n t h i s c o n t e x t thus concern the evidence o f i n e r t i a and l i m i t e d response t o the programmes g e n e r a l l y , and the c o n t r a s t i n g r a p i d i n n o v a t i o n i n l o c a l i s e d a r e a s and among the rural elites.  A t h e o r y o f d e c i s i o n p r o c e s s e s which i s a p p l i c a b l e t o  the programmes must seek t o account f o r t h i s d u a l p a t t e r n o f r e s p o n s e . The theory proposed above f o c u s e s on t h r e e c r i t i c a l mechanisms which s t r u c t u r e c h o i c e parameters.  These a r e c o n t r o l over i n f o r m a t i o n flow,  p e r s u a s i o n , and c o n t r o l over i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s .  The f o l l o w i n g r e v i e w  45  examines the p o t e n t i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e o f these  factors i n structuring  d i f f e r e n t i a l response t o development programmes, and the e x t e n t t o which these i s s u e s have been addressed i n c u r r e n t  Information The  research.  Flow f i r s t a s p e c t o f t h e theory concerns r e c e p t i o n o f r e l e v a n t  i n f o r m a t i o n as t h i s determines the scope o f a l t e r n a t i v e s which may e n t e r the f i e l d o f c h o i c e f o r d i f f e r e n t i n d i v i d u a l s and what i s known about them.  The b a s i c assumption o f the theory  i s t h a t the a f f i l i a t i o n  o f those who c o n t r o l i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l determine t h e amount, content and b i a s i n i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d by o t h e r s w i t h i n a community. hypotheses p r e d i c t t h a t those i n g r a n t i n g access  i n control w i l l  interests.  favour c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s  t o c h a n n e l s f o r d i r e c t i n f o r m a t i o n , and a l s o i n  further d i f f u s i o n of information. mation which they  Moreover, t h e content o f any i n f o r -  t r a n s m i t w i l l be censored  i n r e l a t i o n to t h e i r  In the c o n t e x t o f development programmes these  r a i s e questions  Specific  concerning  own  hypotheses  t h e c h a n n e l l i n g o f i n f o r m a t i o n and d i f f e r -  e n t i a l b a r r i e r s t o knowledge o f proposed i n n o v a t i o n s .  I t i s expected  t h a t d i f f e r e n t * s t r a t a o f the v i l l a g e communities w i l l evidence  signifi-  c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r o b t a i n i n g i n f o r m a t i o n , w i t h the p o s i t i o n o f p r i m a r y i n t e r m e d i a r i e s p r o v i d i n g t h e key i n d i c a t o r o f preferential  access.  Current  l i t e r a t u r e on p r o j e c t s i n I n d i a i s summarised below  w i t h r e s p e c t t o evidence and  o f e f f e c t i v e i n f o r m a t i o n flow on t h e programmes,  i n d i c a t i o n s of d i f f e r e n t i a l b a r r i e r s to d i f f u s i o n . The  innovations  importance o f adequate communication c o n c e r n i n g i s generally recognized  i n these programmes.  emphasis has been p l a c e d on e x t e n s i o n  education,  technological  Special  particularly  through  46  the medium of village-level-workers.  Multi-media techniques have been  adopted i n p a r t i c u l a r Blocks to p u b l i c i z e the programmes through interaction between o f f i c i a l s and v i l l a g e r s , public meetings and clubs, and through mass media channels of radio, cinema, and l i t e r a t u r e (Dube 1958,  103-113).  The effectiveness of information dissemination  not always been impressive.  Some studies do indicate that i n d i s t r i c t s  selected for intensive development e f f o r t s the l e v e l of among v i l l a g e r s was villages  has  information  s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher than surrounding control  (Nanda 1972,  112; Mukherjee 1970,  A17).  Other studies document  widespread ignorance of the programmes among v i l l a g e r s included within the development d i s t r i c t s .  In one case as many as h a l f the v i l l a g e r s  interviewed appeared to be largely ignorant of programme a c t i v i t i e s year a f t e r i t s inauguration  i n the d i s t r i c t .  one  Respondents appeared to  have only the vaguest knowledge of s p e c i f i c projects undertaken (Dube 1958,  104-114; Dube 1967,  140-6).  Lack of information i s frequently  c i t e d as a cause of non-adoption of projects 1970,  1191)  S. Rao  1970,  (Khan 1972,  97; Mencher  A177).  The c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of those respondents who informed are highly s e l e c t i v e .  do appear well  Rogers categorizes them as generally  larger farmers with modernized commercial farms, better educated than the average v i l l a g e r , and more l i k e l y to hold leadership positions i n l o c a l organizations rural elites.  (1962, ch. 6; 1969,  ch. 8).  In e f f e c t they are the  Further studies suggest that these t r a i t s hold consistently  across several d i f f e r e n t countries  (Rogers et a l . 1970,  ch. 3).  Rogers  assumes that these better informed respondents are s e l f - s e l e c t i v e of the more venturesome, and cosmopolite individuals who  a c t i v e l y seek  47  outside contacts and information (1969, 146-168).  Other studies i n d i -  cate that selective exclusion from access to informed sources may also be a c r i t i c a l factor i n d i f f e r e n t i a l knowledge.  V i l l a g e s which are  r e l a t i v e l y inaccessible or backward are less l i k e l y to receive regular v i s i t s from Block personnel.  In consequence, aggregate levels of  information on development programmes tend to be lower than i n more favoured v i l l a g e s  (Khan 1972, 99). Also, not a l l sectors within v i l l a g e s  are equally l i k e l y to receive attention.  Leaders of the v i l l a g e councils  are p a r t i c u l a r l y advantaged i n having regular access to government o f f i c i a l s and extension workers outside the v i l l a g e ,  (Minz 1970, 1889),  but the majority of these incumbents are drawn from the r u r a l e l i t e s of higher caste and wealthy landowners.  The average farmer rarely has any  contact with o f f i c i a l s above the l e v e l of VLW's or Block administrators (Mencher 1970, 1191). t h e i r home v i l l a g e ,  While most v i l l a g e r s enjoy some contacts outside  (Opler 1967, 42-47), these are unlikely to be  s i g n i f i c a n t as informants on technical d e t a i l s of the development programmes.  Extension workers on their part often appear to favour contacts  with well-to-do sectors of the communities and with middle class farmers of s i m i l a r socio-economic status to themselves.  They have l i t t l e i n -  centive to work with the poor and i l l i t e r a t e s who comprise the majority of v i l l a g e r s  (Mencher 1970, 1192).  Lower castes appear the least l i k e l y  to receive information d i r e c t l y from extension workers (Nanda 1972, 113; Khan 1972, 37). There are some indications that v i l l a g e e l i t e s may deliberately seek to l i m i t the extent of contact between o f f i c i a l s and the lower strata, i n fear that i t might undermine t h e i r own position of command  (Mencher 1970, 1195).  48  Mass media appear to- play only a limited r o l e as independent channels for communication.  Newspaper c i r c u l a t i o n i s r e s t r i c t e d by  i l l i t e r a c y , but radio also i s not widely c i t e d as an important of information.  source  Problems of d i a l e c t , bookish language, urban orienta-  t i o n , and limited relevance for v i l l a g e r s , a l l appear to l i m i t the effectiveness of mass media f o r information transmission within the villages  (Nanda 1972,  115; Dube 1958,  107; Rao 1966,  590; Epstein  1962,  115) . When these many d i f f e r e n t accounts are combined they  suggest  that e f f e c t i v e access to primary sources of information on development programmes may well be confined to a select minority of v i l l a g e r s . Information d i f f u s i o n from these intermediaries to others also appears to be both limited and s e l e c t i v e . been shown to spread rapidly,  (Rogers 1969,  Dramatic news items have 1; Dube 1967,  140-2), but  not so the technical information relevant for development programmes. Studies of special broadcasts and t r a i n i n g sessions indicate that dissemination of information from p a r t i c i p a n t s to others may restricted  (Sinha & Metha 1972,  421; Roy et a l . 1969,  be  extremely  54, & 110).  Information d i f f u s i o n has been conceptualised as an exponential function of the proportion of a community already informed, 215; Coleman 1964,  (Rogers  1962,  432), but i n p r a c t i c e members of d i f f e r e n t s t r a t a  may well not mix together or interact s u f f i c i e n t l y for information to flow r e a d i l y between them.  I t appears especially unlikely between  high caste and low caste sectors (Beteille 1965,  19-35; Epstein 1973,  113).  Public meetings of v i l l a g e panchayats are intended to function as organized forums for debate and information exchange, but such meetings  49  are commonly described as infrequent and with selective attendance. Low  caste representatives appear most l i k e l y to be excluded.  1965,  160; Epstein 1962, 129). N  Beteille  The e l i t e 'opinion leaders' may also  appear too r i c h and powerful for other v i l l a g e r s to w i l l i n g l y approach them to seek advice, p a r t i c u l a r l y on sensitive issues such as family planning  (Mencher 1970,  1196).  Few studies provide data of s u f f i c i e n t d e t a i l to assess the extent of d i s t o r t i o n i n information transmitted to others.  Specific  references to the suppression of information on tenant's r i g h t s and on land reform,  (Ladejinsky 1971, 174), and also of exaggerated o f f i c i a l  reports of programme a c t i v i t i e s and achievements, (Valsen 1970, 74-5; Mellor 1968, 62), do t e s t i f y to the p o t e n t i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e of such practices on the operation of the programmes. In summary, many of the findings of these studies appear to be consistent with the proposed theory of information c o n t r o l . The combined accounts suggest that communication has generally not proven e f f e c t i v e , and there are indications of d i f f e r e n t i a l access to knowledge by various strata of the communities, and also of information d i s t o r t i o n . Some authors have drawn attention to the s i g n i f i c a n c e of r e s t r i c t e d information as a b a r r i e r to adoption of proposals i n s p e c i f i c instances. None of these studies, however, provide an adequate basis for testing the hypotheses generated by the theory.  The dynamics of communication  have r a r e l y been subject to comprehensive examination, arid l i t t l e attempt has been made to relate p a r t i c u l a r findings to any comprehensive theory of information flow as a s o c i a l process.  The explanations offered  r e l y mainly on inferences from s p e c i f i c findings without any systematic  50  c o n t r o l of implied causal v a r i a b l e s . The p r e s e n t study goes beyond t h i s l a r g e l y d e s c r i p t i v e r e s e a r c h , t o examine more s y s t e m a t i c a l l y the e x t e n t to which c a u s a l v a r i a b l e s s p e c i f i e d i n the theory can account  f o r - and p r e d i c t - d i f f e r e n t i a l  i n f o r m a t i o n flow on the development programmes.  Persuasion The processes  second c r i t i c a l  concerns  i s s u e i n the proposed t h e o r y of d e c i s i o n  mechanisms of p e r s u a s i o n , as these a f f e c t the  p r e t a t i o n and e v a l u a t i o n of new t h e o r y i s t h a t a chooser's  proposals.  The main assumption of the  p e r c e p t i o n o f informants w i l l determine  evaluation of information received. new  t i o n when immediate informants  i n promoting  are p e r c e i v e d by the chooser  competent, or i n f o r m a t i o n i t s e l f i s fragmentary,  and  innova-  t o be i n -  a l s o when the  reason t o d i s t r u s t the motives and i n t e n t i o n s of  r e s p o n s i b l e f o r i n i t i a t i n g new  the  S p e c i f i c hypotheses a s s e r t t h a t  p r o p o s a l s w i l l have l i m i t e d p e r s u a s i v e impact  chooser has  inter-  persons  p r o p o s a l s , or sees those i n v o l v e d as  advantaged r e l a t i v e t o h i m s e l f t h a t emulation  appears i m p r a c t i c a l .  the c o n t e x t o f development programmes these hypotheses r a i s e  so In  guestions  c o n c e r n i n g d i f f e r e n t i a l e x p e r i e n c e s w i t h e x t e n s i o n workers, and  the  bases f o r a p p r a i s a l o f the q u a l i t y o f a d v i c e from them, and the  apparent  r e l e v a n c e o f the programmes f o r d i f f e r e n t economic s t r a t a o f the communities.  I t i s expected  t h a t when the c o n d i t i o n s f o r such a p p r a i s a l are  n e g a t i v e , t h e y w i l l be a s s o c i a t e d w i t h l i m i t e d response i n n o v a t i o n s , compared w i t h more f a v o u r a b l e c o n d i t i o n s .  t o proposed The major f i n d i n g s  o f c u r r e n t r e s e a r c h and e x p l a n a t i o n s o f f e r e d w i t h r e s p e c t t o these i s s u e s are summarized below.  51  The f i r s t variable i n the proposed theory i s perception of the q u a l i t y of information received.  The c r e d i b i l i t y accorded to  o f f i c i a l s from outside the l o c a l community has been conceptualized by Rogers as a r e f l e c t i o n of a modernistic and cosmopolitan o r i e n t a t i o n , which, he suggests, i s the antithesis of the t r a d i t i o n a l c u l t u r a l outlook of peasants (Rogers et a l . 1970, Ch. 4, pg. 13). However, there are indications that v i l l a g e r s may well have good reasons f o r scepticism regarding the q u a l i t y of advice and information they receive from extension workers.  Not a l l have proven competent i n traditional.methods of  farming, and a high proportion lack s u f f i c i e n t t r a i n i n g to f u l l y understand the new technology they are responsible for teaching to v i l l a g e r s (Mellor 1968, 37). The not uncommon outcome has been serious errors i n the p r a c t i c a l implementation  of the programmes (Hunter 1969, 114-119).  The low status of v i l l a g e - l e v e l workers at the bottom rung of the development bureaucracy  i s also unlikely to enhance t h e i r image as competent  teachers i n the eyes of the average v i l l a g e r  (Mencher 1970, 1191).  Furthermore, the information which i s received may well not be such as to j u s t i f y any high l e v e l of confidence i n i t s accuracy, p a r t i c u l a r l y when disseminated at second or t h i r d hand (Sinha & Metha 1972, 421). Different accounts reveal important gaps i n technical information which has reached the v i l l a g e r s .  Some appeared unaware of chemical properties  or modes of application of new inputs i n agriculture,  (S. Rao 1970, 177).  Extension workers have omitted to explain the significance of proposed stock reduction for s o i l conservation,  (Rogers 1962, 371), or the  r e l a t i o n between sanitation and disease prevention,  (Fraser 1968, 237),  or have f a i l e d to c l a r i f y the new contraceptive devices available and  52  how  they work (Mencher 1970,  1193).  Such omissions have sometimes  been prompted by the b e l i e f that v i l l a g e r s would be unable to understand such explanations, but the outcome may well be that v i l l a g e r s lack any r a t i o n a l basis for abandoning t r a d i t i o n a l practices.  This  i s e s p e c i a l l y so where inept t r i a l of innovations have resulted i n i n s i g n i f i c a n t benefits (Khan 1972,  97).  A further variable stressed by the theory i s t r u s t i n the motives of those who  i n i t i a t e new proposals.  Distrust and h o s t i l i t y  towards o f f i c i a l s has again been conceptualized as an a t t r i b u t e of Peasant subcultures, (Rogers 1969,  29-30), but there are indications  that experiences with extension workers and government o f f i c i a l s have not always been such as to encourage t r u s t i n them.  Where v i l l a g e r s  have f e l t snubbed and ignored by extension workers i n the past they may well f e e l l i t t l e incentive to take any active interest i n t r a i n i n g programmes or proposals sponsored by them (Roy et a l . 1969,  98).  Accounts of favouritism shown by extension workers to e l i t e s or certain factions within the communities, and of corruption i n o f f i c e , are also l i k e l y to generate suspicion and d i s t r u s t among the disfavoured (Dube 1958,  119; Breman 1974,  223; Beals 1974,  138-9).  The theory also emphasises the perceived relevance of development programmes f o r d i f f e r e n t economic s t r a t a .  The new  technology  has been heralded as size-neutral, e n t a i l i n g no major i n d i v i s i b i l i t i e s or lumpy inputs, (Khan 1972,  3; Ladejinsky 1972,  404), but small  farmers have been commonly assumed to have limited propensity to take r i s k s , or to experiment with innovations (Rogers 1962, 189; 1970,  Ch. 4; Parthasarathy 1974,  185;  1971,  184; Majumdar 1970, A5).  183-  Again  53  however, the manner of presentation of the programmes may  provide good  reason for small farmers to perceive innovations as impractical for themselves.  Responses which have been categorised as 'disinterestedness  in innovations among poorly educated respondents, have been  1  expressed  by respondents themselves i n terms of perceived p r o h i b i t i v e costs (Nanda 1972,  103-106).  L i t t l e further data i s given concerning factors  which might promote or reinforce such perceptions. s e l f - f u l f i l l i n g prophesy may  Something of a  obtain where encouragement to innovate i s  concentrated among wealthy farmers who  are preconceived by  workers as more innovative (Roling et a l . 1974,  5).  extension  In the rare instances  where this p o l i c y has been d e l i b e r a t e l y reversed with extension e f f o r t s being concentrated among the smallest farmers, t h e i r adoption of innovations has dramatically increased (ibid 20-21; Ascroft et a l . 1973, 63-70; Shastry 1971,  A97).  The manner of presentation appears to have  considerable influence on how poorer farmers perceive and respond to innovations. A further issue concerns how  t h i s approach to persuasion  relates to the more common emphasis on c u l t u r a l values as determinants of how  new proposals w i l l be evaluated. ' The apparent d i s i n t e r e s t and  r e j e c t i o n of development programmes has been attributed to p r e v a i l i n g subcultural value orientations among v i l l a g e r s which are i n i m i c a l to change (Rogers 1969,  ch. 2).  An e x p l i c i t objective of development  programmes was to change the attitudes and outlook of r u r a l peoples, as both an end i n i t s e l f and a necessary a g r i c u l t u r a l production  (Mellor 1968,  condition for increasing  35).  Such negative orientations  have been p a r t i c u l a r l y attributed to lower castes i n India.  They have  54  been d e s c r i b e d as o r i e n t e d p r i m a r i l y towards t r a d i t i o n a l  sanskritic  v a l u e s , r a t h e r than western v a l u e s o f i n d i v i d u a l achievement which are conducive  t o modernization  ( S r i n i v a s 1956, 481-496;  V i l l a g e r s themselves have o c c a s i o n a l l y endorsed Labourers  have been d e s c r i b e d by l a r g e farmers  o l d h a b i t s t o l e a r n new t e c h n i q u e s c i t e d by t h e farmers labour  conception.  as i n c a p a b l e o f b r e a k i n g  such as l i n e sowing, and t h i s i s  as a major j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r t h e i r h i r i n g o u t s i d e  ( E p s t e i n 1973, 60).  V i l l a g e r s a r e not i n f r e q u e n t l y c i t e d as  g i v i n g a p p a r e n t l y t r i v i a l reasons new p r o p o s a l s  this  1966, ch. 2 ) .  o f h a b i t and custom f o r r e j e c t i n g  (Dube 1958, 133-137; F r a s e r 1968, 252-257).  s t u d i e s have attempted t o measure the a s s o c i a t i o n between  Numerous adoption  o f i n n o v a t i o n s and assumed modern over t r a d i t i o n a l v a l u e s , b u t w i t h mixed r e s u l t s .  Some r e c e n t r e s e a r c h i n I n d i a r e c o r d s a h i g h  correlation  between a d o p t i o n and measured a t t i t u d e s , (Rangaswamy 1972, 156), w h i l e o t h e r s f i n d t h e a s s o c i a t i o n vague o r not s t a t i s t i c a l l y ( T r i v e d i 1975, 65; Boyd 1971, 54).  significant  Yet o t h e r t h e o r i s t s s t r e s s t h a t  t r a d i t i o n a l v a l u e s may both a i d and i n h i b i t change, w i t h no one-way r e l a t i o n between them G u s f i e l d 1967, 351-362).  (Gould 1970, 1171-1176;  predetermined  Smock 1969,  In some c o n t e x t s t r a d i t i o n a l v a l u e s ,  110-124;  including  s a n s k r i t i z a t i o n and c a s t e i s m have been d i r e c t l y invoked as j u s t i f y i n g p r e s s u r e s f o r p o l i t i c a l change 1968, 538-549). f a c t o r s which may  (Mahar 1959; Cohn 1958, 420; Rudolph  Few s t u d i e s attempt t o d i r e c t l y examine the c o n t e x t u a l s u s t a i n o r undermine t r a d i t i o n a l a t t i t u d e s , o r which  may promote a r e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f v a l u e s i n f a v o u r o f change. i n d i c a t e d above, t h e r e are c o n c r e t e e x p e r i e n c e s which may  As  generate  s c e p t i c i s m , d i s t r u s t , and low r i s k - t a k i n g p o t e n t i a l commonly a s s o c i a t e d  55  with the subculture of lower strata of peasants, which have d i r e c t implications f o r how  v i l l a g e r s w i l l respond to new proposals  through the development programmes.  sponsored  In this approach values are con-  ceptualized as mediating between experience and response, rather than as independent causal agents (Hale 1975,  32-36).  In summary, these studies again o f f e r some supportive evidence for the proposed theory.  There are recurrent indications that condi-  tions f o r persuasion are largely negative for wide sectors of the v i l l a g e communities, and some authors have suggested t h e i r p o t e n t i a l importance for innovation. than piecemeal observations.  Such accounts, however, provide l i t t l e more None of the studies present any compre-  hensive or controlled examination of factors r e s t r i c t i n g persuasion. Separate observations have not been related to any systematic theory of persuasion.  The factor of adequate knowledge of new proposals i s  sometimes acknowledged as a l i m i t i n g condition on persuasion, but t h i s has not been controlled i n subsequent analysis of willingness to innovate.  Widespread references are made to the role of value orientations  in persuasion, but again the conditions which promote such appraisals have generally been ignored, or at best l e f t as i m p l i c i t assumptions i n the accounts.  It i s impossible on the basis of these studies to  derive any clear appraisal of causal variables which goes beyond suggestive inferences. The present study p u l l s these scattered insights together i n r e l a t i o n to a more systematic theory of persuasion.  I t attempts to  measure the extent to which the causal variables specified i n the above hypotheses can predict d i f f e r e n t i a l rates of non-adoption among informed  56  villagers.  Input  Facilities The  l a s t aspect  o f t h e proposed theory  concerns access t o a v a i l a b l e i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s ,  of d e c i s i o n processes as t h i s determines the  range o f f e a s i b l e a l t e r n a t i v e s f o r i n d i v i d u a l s d i f f e r e n t i a l l y w i t h i n a community.  The g e n e r a l  assumption made here i s t h a t the  a f f i l i a t i o n o f those who c o n t r o l i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s w i l l p r i o r i t i e s i n t h e i r u t i l i z a t i o n by o t h e r s , competing a l t e r n a t i v e s .  granted.  determine  and t h e i r a l l o c a t i o n between  S p e c i f i c hypotheses p r e d i c t t h a t those who  c o n t r o l input f a c i l i t i e s w i l l of access t o f a c i l i t i e s ,  situated  favour  c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s both i n t h e e x t e n t  and t h e c o n d i t i o n s  Moreover, they w i l l  favour  under which access i s  the a l l o c a t i o n o f funds t o p r o j e c t s  most conducive t o the o b j e c t i v e s o f t h e i r own s e c t o r o f the communities, and  o b s t r u c t any which c o n f l i c t w i t h these o b j e c t i v e s .  with respect  Questions r a i s e d  t o t h e development programmes concern t h e c h a n n e l l i n g o f  i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s made a v a i l a b l e , and d i f f e r e n t i a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s t o b e n e f i t from them.  I t i s expected t h a t d i f f e r e n t s e c t o r s o f the  communities w i l l evidence s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r access t o , and b e n e f i t from funds, w i t h the p o s i t i o n o f those who c o n t r o l t h e funds p r o v i d i n g a key i n d i c a t o r o f t h e d i r e c t i o n i n which bias w i l l occur.  Data r e l a t i n g t o i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s  p r e t a t i o n s o f these f i n d i n g s i n c u r r e n t r e s e a r c h  and proposed  are b r i e f l y  inter-  reviewed  below. Investment f a c i l i t i e s p r o v i d e d  by the government t o support  new p r o j e c t s i n c l u d e l o w - i n t e r e s t c r e d i t , a g r i c u l t u r a l s u p p l i e s , and a  57  range of special-purpose loans and grants.  These are variously  administered through the Blocks, or through v i l l a g e panchayats and cooperative s o c i e t i e s .  The expansion  of r u r a l c a p i t a l has been  heralded as the single most s i g n i f i c a n t factor promoting development, more s i g n i f i c a n t than a l l other aspects of the programmes combined including changes i n s o c i a l organization and land reform 149, & 221-2).  (Neale 1962,  However, there are many indications of b a r r i e r s to the  e f f e c t i v e u t i l i z a t i o n of f a c i l i t i e s which cannot be d i s s o c i a t e d from patterns of s o c i a l organization.  A common observation i s that small  landowners have derived limited benefit from c r e d i t f a c i l i t i e s , and t h e i r disadvantage  r e l a t i v e to wealthier applicants appears to be  increasing (Hanumantha Rao 1970, A157-158).  This has been attributed  to rules of e l i g i b i l i t y which t i e c r e d i t to the amount of land which i s offered as c o l l a t e r a l .  The requirement  of security has been so r i g i d l y  enforced that loans of only half the t o t a l value of mortgaged lands have been sanctioned, and the method of evaluation used has also tended to undervalue the lands  (Jodha 1971, A145).  One consequence of t h i s  p o l i c y i s that small farmers may recieve c r e d i t to only one-half or less of the purchase cost of new assets.  Such underfinancing serves to  perpetuate a v i c i o u s c i r c l e of dependence on t r a d i t i o n a l moneylenders, or to render new investments  out of reach  (ibid, A145; Ojha 1970, 604;  H. Rao 1970, A157-158; Ladejinsky 1969, 152-153).  Commercial lending  appears to reinforce existing income and wealth d i s t r i b u t i o n .  The  expansion of credit on these terms serves only to lower the e f f e c t i v e margin of those included among the 'credit-worthy'  (Harvey 1975, 91).  The p o l i c y has been j u s t i f i e d on the assumption that small landholders  58  lack the necessary economic base to absorb c r e d i t , or to benefit from investment  (Neale 1962, 4; Frankel 1971, 20-23; Dobbs 1972, 116).  This assumption i s tempered by a series of studies which indicate that output per acre may be as great or greater on small holdings compared with large farms when farmers have adequate access to input (Brown 1970, 111; Chowdhury  facilities  1970, A95; Rani 1971, A89). Joint loans  to small farmers and cooperative investment plans have also proven viable alternatives to provision of c r e d i t s t r i c t l y on the basis of landholdings  (Raper 1970, 65-77; Frankel 1971, 68). Other proposals to  increase the flow of credit to smallholders include l i n k i n g credit to the production p o t e n t i a l of new assets, (Jodha 1971, A146), or to be a statutory charge on the crop and on personal security, 1968,  251). Further recommendations are for concessionary  rates for small landholders,  (Shivamaggi interest  (Madalgi 1970, 11; H. Rao 1971, A161),  and provision of s p e c i a l grants on the basis of landlessness rather than scheduled caste status (Epstein 1973, 245). These and other schemes designed to benefit smallholders owning f i v e acres or less were incorporated i n the Small Farmer Development Agency established i n 1970 by the Indian Government as part of the Fourth Plan (Gaikwad 1971,  9-12). The many p o l i c y recommendations favouring increased provision  of credit and a i d to small farmers have not proven easy to implement. Changes i n rules of e l i g i b i l i t y prompted a s h i f t i n concern from proof of c o l l a t e r a l to proof of 'special status'.  Members of the upper  strata who pressured to be c l a s s i f i e d as "backward" castes i n order to be e l i g i b l e for Harijan Aid schemes, (Epstein 1973, 188), exerted  59  s i m i l a r pressures  t o be c l a s s e d as 'small l a n d h o l d e r s '  c l a i m b e n e f i t s under t h e new scheme.  Considerable  i n order t o  bureaucratic  delays  appear t o have r e v o l v e d around t h e d e f i n i t i o n o f a 'small farmer' (Mencher 1970, 1191; Gaikwad 1971, 20; S c h a f f e r 1975, 13). The problems o f access r a t h e r than a v a i l a b i l i t y o f funds i s emphasised by the o b s e r v a t i o n t h a t o n l y a s m a l l p r o p o r t i o n o f funds a l l o c a t e d by the government f o r t h e Small Farmers' Scheme was a c t u a l l y spent years of i t s operation  during the f i r s t  (Gaikwad 1971, 29; S c h a f f e r 1975, 1 3 ) .  Concentration  o f c o n t r o l over c o o p e r a t i v e  i n s t i t u t i o n s i n the  hands o f l a r g e r landowners appears t o be c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h of access by members o f t h i s stratum. must go through t h e s o c i e t i e s ' supporters 1703;  Any r e q u e s t s  ease  f o r l o a n s and a i d  l e a d e r s , and a p p l i c a t i o n s from t h e i r  have f r e q u e n t l y r e c e i v e d s p e c i a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n  (Reddy 1970,  Gaikwad 1971, 1; Havens 1975, 469). A p p l i c a n t s f o r a l o a n may  have t o f i l l  o u t as many as twelve forms which have t o be c l e a r e d by  s e v e r a l departments.  Those who a r e i l l i t e r a t e and l e a s t a b l e t o handle  the paperwork o r t o p r e s s u r e  o f f i c i a l s appear a t a d i s t i n c t  disadvantage.  The hope o f g e t t i n g 'speed money' can a l s o c o n s i d e r a b l y d e l a y t h e a p p l i c a t i o n o f those who do n o t p r o f f e r i t (Reddy 1970, 1703; S c h a f f e r 1975,  13-14).  have v e s t e d  Large landowners who dominate t h e s o c i e t i e s may a l s o  i n t e r e s t s i n excluding  they themselves operate f u s e d admission  small c u l t i v a t o r s , p a r t i c u l a r l y i f  as l o c a l moneylenders.  may appeal  V i l l a g e r s who a r e r e -  t o the R e g i s t r a r of Cooperatives,  but t h i s  presupposes t h a t they know t h e i r r i g h t s and how t o e x e r c i s e them (Shivamaggi 1968, 251-255; S c h a f f e r 1975, 17). The i m p r e s s i o n  conveyed  by these many accounts i s t h a t t h e s p e c i a l schemes have proven  largely  i n e f f e c t i v e i n extending  c r e d i t and a i d t o the poor.  60  Other projects intended to benefit small farmers and labourers have commonly not been undertaken or completed, the few exceptions being projects which also benefitted large landowners i n the region (Gaikwad 1971,  29-38).  Proposals which operate to the disadvantage  of  e l i t e s , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n r e l a t i o n to land reform,have rarely been successfully implemented.  Administrators appear to show l i t t l e  commitment to ensuring the enforcement of such l e g i s l a t i o n , especially in instances where they themselves might stand to lose (Ladejinsky 415; 1971,  174; C l i f f e 1971,  89).  1968,  The converse pattern of p r e f e r e n t i a l  a l l o c a t i o n of funds appears to be considerably influenced by the p o l i t i c a l t i e s of incumbent Presidents of the d i s t r i c t councils, to the extent that certain v i l l a g e s are c l e a r l y favoured over others i n the d i s t r i b u t i o n of grants  (Reddy 1970,  1702;  Dubey 1975,  79; Sharma 1974,  105).  Such  decisions have been conceptualised as 'non-rational' from the perspective of maximizing benefits from investments  (Dubey 1975,  76), but they  are c l e a r l y advantageous for the individuals immediately  concerned.  In summary, the incidence of p r e f e r e n t i a l access to funds and selective a l l o c a t i o n between projects c i t e d i n these studies are closely consistent with the proposed theory of control over input f a c i l i t i e s . Again, however, the approaches taken by these studies are largely piecemeal and descriptive.  Various explanations have been offered f o r  p a r t i c u l a r findings, but they have not been drawn together i n r e l a t i o n to any systematically tested 'theory of resource a l l o c a t i o n .  Data are  not generally presented i n s u f f i c i e n t l y controlled a manner to permit the causal significance of d i f f e r e n t factors to be assessed,or to permit the evaluation of c o n f l i c t i n g explanations offered.  Remedies  61  suggested  on the b a s i s o f p a r t i a l and ex-post  have not proven e f f e c t i v e .  factum  interpretations  A v e r y r e c e n t work by S c h a f f e r does attempt  t o p r e s e n t a g e n e r a l t h e o r y o f access t o government i n s t i t u t i o n s / b u t as y e t t h i s i s not f o r m u l a t e d as a s e t of t e s t a b l e p r o p o s i t i o n s ,  n  r e l a t e d to any  access  s y s t e m a t i c a n a l y s i s of d i f f e r e n t i a l c o n d i t i o n s o f  o  r  w i t h i n a community. The p r e s e n t study p r o v i d e s a framework f o r the  systematic  a n a l y s i s o f c a u s a l v a r i a b l e s which u n d e r l y d i f f e r e n t i a l b e n e f i t from facilities,  and a c o n t r o l l e d b a s i s f o r e v a l u a t i n g the u t i l i t y  of  alter-  n a t i v e e x p l a n a t i o n s proposed.  Conclusion C o n s i d e r a b l e s u p p o r t i v e evidence proposed t h e o r y o f d e c i s i o n p r o c e s s e s on development programmes.  f o r various aspects of  the  can be found i n c u r r e n t l i t e r a t u r e  None of these s t u d i e s , however, p r o v i d e s  an  adequate b a s i s f o r t e s t i n g u n d e r l y i n g c a u s a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s s p e c i f i e d i n the t h e o r y .  E x p l a n a t i o n s which have been o f f e r e d f o r p a r t i c u l a r f i n d i n g s  are based l a r g e l y on i n f e r e n c e s drawn from observed c o n t r o l l e d t e s t i n g of proposed c a u s a l v a r i a b l e s . they are r e l a t e d o n l y t o s p e c i f i c i n s t a n c e s , and to o t h e r s i t u a t i o n s o r t o any broader  d a t a r a t h e r than  For the most p a r t lack g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y  t h e o r e t i c a l framework.  In no  study have the d i f f e r e n t s t a g e s i n the d e c i s i o n p r o c e s s been i n c o r p o r a t e d i n t o a comprehensive a n a l y s i s of response  to innovation.  The  central  o b j e c t i v e o f t h i s study i s t o i n t e g r a t e the a n a l y s i s o f i n f o r m a t i o n flow, p e r s u a s i o n , and r e s o u r c e c o n t r o l i n t o a comprehensive theory of d e c i s i o n processes  explanatory  and to p r o v i d e a c o n t r o l l e d t e s t o f the  62  p r e d i c t i v e u t i l i t y of proposed c a u s a l v a r i a b l e s , between them.  and  interrelationships  CHAPTER THREE RESEARCH PROCEDURES The study was conducted i n the central p l a i n s of North India, i n the State of Uttar Pradesh. region.  This i s a r e l a t i v e l y f e r t i l e a g r i c u l t u r a l  Land i s low-lying, and i s i r r i g a t e d by means of canals and  ponds and also underground water which i s not f a r below the surface. The two,staple crops are wheat and r i c e , with some l e n t i l s , and vegetables.  sugarcane,  The five v i l l a g e s included i n the study are a l l within  each reach of a major trunk road which links them with a large town some twelve to twenty-five miles away.  The f i f t h v i l l a g e i s reached  by an unmetalled road but this i s i n good condition and can be used by motor transport even i n the rainy season.  Bus services to the town run  every two hours or so along the trunk roads.  The two v i l l a g e s closest  to the town are also d i r e c t l y served by railway stations. The f i v e v i l l a g e s are incorporated within two separate Development Blocks.  The major consideration i n their selection was that  o f f i c i a l s from the Block have been a c t i v e l y working i n the v i l l a g e f o r several years preceding the study.  Two of the v i l l a g e s are close to  the Block headquarters, and Block workers have resided i n , or close by, the remaining three v i l l a g e s .  A second factor was s i z e .  The selected  v i l l a g e s each have a separate panchayat or v i l l a g e council, but are also s u f f i c i e n t l y small to make i t possible to interview a l l resident families.  A t h i r d factor was simply convenience.  The v i l l a g e s are a l l  within easy cycling distance of the two locations where I l i v e d .  No  64  p r i o r records were available to indicate the r e l a t i v e success of the development programmes i n d i f f e r e n t v i l l a g e s .  The map on the following  page shows the location of the f i v e v i l l a g e s i n r e l a t i o n to the nearby town and infrastructure.  Other i d e n t i f y i n g features of the area are  omitted to retain the anonymity of the communities.  The v i l l a g e s d i f f e r  with respect to l o c a l opportunities for access to markets, schools and other f a c i l i t i e s .  Three v i l l a g e s are close to large market centres  which are stimulated by road junctions and bus transfer stations. These centres provide some opportunity for employment and petty vending a c t i v i t i e s f o r the v i l l a g e r s .  The second and f i f t h v i l l a g e s are located  some distance away from the markets but many farmers and venders do make the t r i p regularly on market days.  A l l the v i l l a g e s now have  primary schools up to grade f i v e and the f i f t h has a middle school up to grade seven.  High schools are located only i n the market centres,  with intercolleges for grades eleven and twelve situated close to the f i r s t and fourth v i l l a g e s .  Respondents The study i s based on interviews with one adult male from each household i n the f i v e v i l l a g e s .  Wherever possible the senior person or  head of household was selected.  E l e c t o r a l r o l l s provided a c h e c k - l i s t  of residents by family but these did not prove wholly accurate.  A  number of j o i n t families had s p l i t into separate households by the time of the study.  Other families among the lower castes were not l i s t e d  although they have been resident i n the v i l l a g e s f o r many years.  Some  families have since moved away from the v i l l a g e s but very few immigrant  Maps  L o c a t i o n o f the F i v e V i l l a g e s S t u d i e d  LO  North  To  Delhi  €U village ======== m a j o r r o a d = = == = g r a v e l r o a d canal railway • B l o c k Headquarters Market centres X bus/train stations s secondary school AR A g r i c . Research S t a t i o n  5 miles  /  66  families were contacted.  The t o t a l number of respondents from each  v i l l a g e i s shown below.  Table I.  Number Interviewed by V i l l a g e  Block One:  V i l l a g e One V i l l a g e Two V i l l a g e Three  12 4 64 110  Block  V i l l a g e Four V i l l a g e Five  110 132  Total  540  Two:  The low mobility and l o c a l i z e d employment of v i l l a g e residents made i n i t i a l contact easy, and large family sizes generally ensured that at least one adult male was available f o r an interview.  Roughly a dozen  households had not been contacted by the conclusion of the study. Only three respondents refused to be interviewed.  Data C o l l e c t i o n The primary method of data c o l l e c t i o n was through directed interviews with each respondent, these l a s t i n g between one and two hours. A translation.of the schedule from Hindi i s given i n the appendix.  The  kind of questions which were included and the various topics covered are described i n d e t a i l below. The interviews opened with a series of questions designed to gain basic factual information on a respondent's caste, the extent of his landholdings, and primary means of l i v e l i h o o d .  They provide important  background data on a respondent's s o c i a l status within the community.  67  The f o l l o w i n g s e c t i o n o f the schedule was  concerned  with  d i f f e r e n t i a l a c c e s s t o media f o r communication a p p r o p r i a t e f o r the development programmes.  Respondents were asked whether they knew o f  s p e c i f i c c l u b s which had been s t a r t e d l o c a l l y by the Block  officials,  and whether they had p e r s o n a l l y attended any such c l u b s , o r had r e c e i v e d an i n v i t a t i o n t o a t t e n d .  The t h r e e important c l u b s were the  youth c l u b , the r a d i o c l u b , and a s p e c i a l c l u b f o r women. q u e s t i o n s i n q u i r e d i n t o ownership households,  ever  o f r a d i o s i n the  Further  respondents'  o r f a i l i n g t h i s , whether they had r e g u l a r a c c e s s t o o t h e r  r a d i o s i n the v i l l a g e .  They were asked t o e s t i m a t e how  f r e q u e n t l y on  the average they l i s t e n e d t o p a r t i c u l a r programmes concerned development t o p i c s , and whether they c o u l d name any t o p i c s covered i n these programmes.  with  recently  F u r t h e r q u e s t i o n s r e l a t e d t o access t o  l i t e r a t u r e c i r c u l a t e d through the Block, whether a respondent l i t e r a t e or had a c l o s e f r i e n d who  would read t o him,  had seen o r r e c e i v e d any l i t e r a t u r e from the B l o c k .  was  and whether he Respondents were  a l s o asked whether they had attended f i l m shows on t o p i c s o f a g r i c u l t u r a l development, s a n i t a t i o n , and f a m i l y p l a n n i n g , which had been shown i n each o f the v i l l a g e s by B l o c k p e r s o n n e l d u r i n g the p r e v i o u s two three years.  or  T h i s s e c t i o n concluded w i t h s e v e r a l q u e s t i o n s c o n c e r n i n g  whom a respondent might t u r n to f o r a d v i c e on a g r i c u l t u r a l m a t t e r s on the development programmes g e n e r a l l y .  Q u e s t i o n s which o c c u r r e d  l a t e r i n the i n t e r v i e w i n q u i r e d i n t o the e x t e n t o f p e r s o n a l c o n t a c t w i t h Block o f f i c i a l s . particular officials,  Respondents were asked whether they knew o f and how  d u r i n g the p r e v i o u s two  years.  f r e q u e n t l y they had t a l k e d w i t h them  or  68  These directed questions served to provide basic data on access to media for communication which are comparable across a l l respondents.  Respondents were encouraged throughout the interview  to add any further comments concerning how the clubs operated and t h e i r own experiences i n r e l a t i o n to the issues raised by the questions A l l such comments were recorded and they provide important background data on the mechanisms for communication flow within the  communities.  The next section of the interview was designed to measure basic knowledge of a l l new proposals included i n the development programmes and the extent to which they have been adopted. Farmers were asked to name any v a r i e t i e s of seeds,  fertilizers  and pesticides which they had heard of, and which v a r i e t i e s they generally used or had t r i e d i n the past.  Further questions inquired  into t h e i r knowledge of new a g r i c u l t u r a l techniques and equipment which were promoted by Block o f f i c i a l s . A l l Respondents were asked a series of directed questions designed to measure the extent of t h e i r knowledge of topics covered in the n u t r i t i o n t r a i n i n g classes, and the scheme for promoting and subsidizing poultry farming.  They were asked whether they had heard  of various techniques for b i r t h control.  In t h i s case some prompting  was necessary as many respondents were too embarrassed devices at f i r s t .  to mention the  Questions on sanitation concerned t h e i r knowledge  of ..chemical p u r i f i e r s which could be added to drinking water and the supposed advantages of new f a c i l i t i e s such as hygienic wells and hand pumps.  They were also asked whether they had seen or heard of water-  sealed l a t r i n e s , and how they worked.  In each case the questions  69  s e r v e d t o p r o v i d e a minimum o f b a s i c d a t a on knowledge and adoption o f new p r o p o s a l s which would be comparable f o r a l l respondents. were n o t c o n f i n e d t o these t a b u l a r data.  Responses  Any f u r t h e r comments which  were prompted by the q u e s t i o n s were encouraged and f o l l o w e d up. comments p r o v i d e d i n v a l u a b l e background i n f o r m a t i o n on p e r c e p t i o n o f new p r o p o s a l s , t h e i r u n d e r s t a n d i n g  These  respondents  1  o f the c h a r a c t e r and  i n t e n t i o n s o f the development programmes, and t h e i r r e l e v a n c e f o r themselves.  Many such comments were taken up a g a i n i n l a t e r s e c t i o n s  of the i n t e r v i e w . T h i s s e c t i o n was f o l l o w e d by a s e r i e s o f q u e s t i o n s e v a l u a t i o n o f new p r o p o s a l s .  concerning  These q u e s t i o n s were i n t e n d e d t o p r o v i d e  the b a s i s f o r an a t t i t u d e s c a l e o f p o s i t i v e , n e u t r a l , o r n e g a t i v e a p p r a i s a l o f new p r o p o s a l s . f o r t h i s purpose.  The q u e s t i o n s proved  The problems encountered  a t t i t u d e s w i l l be examined below.  l e s s than  satisfactory  i n the measurement o f such  The t e n q u e s t i o n s on a p p r a i s a l o f  new p r o p o s a l s , numbered 36 t o 46 i n the a t t a c h e d s c h e d u l e , were v a r i e d t o be a p p r o p r i a t e f o r d i f f e r e n t types o f p r o p o s a l s . respondents  were asked  t o s t a t e what they thought  F u r t h e r prompts were d e s i g n e d  In essence,  each p r o p o s a l  t o e l i c i t whether the respondent  raised. felt  they  o f f e r e d any major advantage over t r a d i t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s , and whether he b e l i e v e d t h e r e were any s p e c i a l problems o r disadvantages  associated  w i t h t h e i r use. The  f o c u s o f the i n t e r v i e w subsequently  w i t h understanding  changed from  concern  o f new p r o p o s a l s , t o concern w i t h p e r c e p t i o n o f  Block a c t i v i t i e s w i t h i n the v i l l a g e .  Leading  i n t o t h i s s e c t i o n were  a s e r i e s o f g e n e r a l q u e s t i o n s c o n c e r n i n g changes i n the v i l l a g e and i n  70  r e l a t i o n s between castes.  Respondents were asked how they f e l t about  them, and the extent to which they attributed any such changes to the impact of government development programmes.  These questions were  s p e c i a l l y designed to encourage respondents to adopt a broader perspective on v i l l a g e a f f a i r s and s o c i a l change, as a prelude to subsequent topics on c o n f l i c t i n g interest groups, and how these were a r t i c u l a t e d i n relations with Block o f f i c i a l s .  Whenever Block o f f i c i a l s  were d i r e c t l y implicated i n negative changes within the v i l l a g e , these responses contributed to the index of antipathy which i s u t i l i z e d i n the analysis of persuasion.  The questions served also to e l i c i t valuable  background information on intercaste relations which could be followed up i n the l a t e r sections of the interview. The section on perception of o f f i c i a l s was introduced through directed questions designed to measure the extent of contact with them. Respondents were asked whether they had met various Block o f f i c i a l s , how often such o f f i c i a l s v i s i t e d t h e i r section of the v i l l a g e , and how frequently they had spoken with them during the previous two years or so.  The following questions 55 to 71 i n the attached schedule were a l l  designed to probe the quality of a respondent's who worked within the v i l l a g e .  experience with o f f i c i a l s  Respondents were asked how well informed  the o f f i c i a l s appeared to be on agriculture and other matters r e l a t i n g to development programmes, whether they had turned to these o f f i c i a l s for advice, and i f so, how valuable was the advice they received.  Each  respondent was asked to rank the perceived l e v e l of education and f i n a n c i a l standing of the o f f i c i a l s r e l a t i v e to themselves and other villagers.  These questions provided the core of the index of perceived  71  competence o f B l o c k o f f i c i a l s which i s used i n the a n a l y s i s of p e r s u a s i o n . Subsequent q u e s t i o n s probed  the c h a r a c t e r o f r e l a t i o n s e s t a b -  l i s h e d between o f f i c i a l s and d i f f e r e n t s e c t o r s o f t h e communities. Respondents were asked how much i n t e r e s t o r concern o f f i c i a l s had shown i n problems o f immediate concern t o themselves how  i n f l u e n c i a l they appeared  o r t h e i r f r i e n d s , and  t o be i n v i l l a g e a f f a i r s and p a r t i c u l a r l y  i n the a c t i v i t i e s o f the v i l l a g e l e a d e r s .  This l e d into pointed questions  c o n c e r n i n g which s e c t o r s o f t h e community appeared which l e a s t ,  t o b e n e f i t most, and  from the a c t i v i t i e s o f the o f f i c i a l s and any e v i d e n c e o f  f a v o u r i t i s m i n whom they a s s o c i a t e d w i t h and whom they h e l p e d most. L a s t l y , respondents were asked t o d i s c u s s any major a c t i v i t i e s promoted through t h e B l o c k which had met w i t h mixed support o r o p p o s i t i o n from d i f f e r e n t s e c t o r s o f t h e community.  They were e s p e c i a l l y prompted  to i n d i c a t e the e x t e n t o f c o o p e r a t i o n between the panchayat  and t h e  B l o c k and any c o n f l i c t s which might have a r i s e n i n t h i s r e g a r d . highly c r i t i c a l  Any  a p p r a i s a l o f Block a c t i v i t i e s f u r t h e r c o n t r i b u t e d t o  the index o f a n t i p a t h y noted above.  These l a s t q u e s t i o n s were p o i n t e d l y  d i r e c t e d towards problems and c o n f l i c t s w i t h i n t h e v i l l a g e s . d e s i g n e d t o encourage respondents perception of o f f i c i a l s  t o d e s c r i b e i n some d e t a i l  and e x p e r i e n c e s w i t h them, and t h e i r  w i t h c o n f l i c t i n g i n t e r e s t groups w i t h i n t h e v i l l a g e .  They were their relations  These comments  were f o l l o w e d up i n t h e next s e c t i o n o f t h e i n t e r v i e w which was concerned w i t h t h e a c t i v i t i e s o f v i l l a g e  panchayats.  I n i t i a l q u e s t i o n s on the panchayats a comparative  were designed t o p r o v i d e  measure o f t h e frequency w i t h which i n d i v i d u a l  respondents  were- t o l d when c o u n c i l meetings were t o be h e l d , and how o f t e n they  72  attended.  Further questions probed the kinds of a c t i v i t i e s which had  been undertaken by the panchayat, how v i l l a g e funds were collected and spent, and which a c t i v i t i e s had received mixed support or opposition from d i f f e r e n t sectors of the communities.  An additional question was  inserted here concerning the d i s t r i b u t i o n of panchayat lands.  The  importance of t h i s scheme was not recognized u n t i l a f t e r interviewing had begun i n the f i r s t v i l l a g e . the  I t was f i r s t mentioned by members of  r i v a l faction i n c r i t i c i s m of how the incumbent Proudhan had ex-  p l o i t e d the scheme f o r h i s own advantage. incorporated into the schedule.  The question was subsequently  Respondents were asked whether they  knew i f any such land had been distributed, who received it,and how i t was disposed of.  Respondents were also asked t h e i r opinion as to which  sectors of the community were s p e c i a l l y favoured i n the projects undertaken through the panchayat and which sections were r e l a t i v e l y neglected. These questions were a l l designed to probe c o n f l i c t s of interests within the  villages.  I t was i n response to such questions that the most i n f o r -  mation was gained concerning factions within the v i l l a g e s and the i d e n t i t y of prominent opponents to the incumbent Proudhans.  The comments  of d i f f e r e n t respondents indicated the extent to which these men were perceived as leaders or spokesmen f o r interest groups and also which sectors of respondents f e l t t h e i r interests were not represented by any major faction.  The multiple accounts of the same events which were  given by respondents from a l l strata provided the major indicator of faction alliances and t h e i r effects on the a c t i v i t i e s of the panchayat and the promotion of development programmes. • Discussion of panchayat a c t i v i t i e s was followed by a series of  73  questions  concerning projects  or  labour  unpaid  to probe  different  of  in  the  such p r o j e c t s  s e c t o r s of  material  towards  the  stages  available  of  within  the  Initial  cooperative  society,  attempts  favouritism problems  trasting  factions,  on t h e i r  questions  of  Additional  in  from the  to  Again,  provided  were  reflected  for  their  get  in  respon-  feelings  concerned with  and t h o s e p r o v i d e d  operation  these  of  of  funds.  in  Any  encouraged  the  different  among  further  competition  for  on t h e s e  into  control  over  dealings with o f f i c i a l s ,  needed  relations.  concerned a p p l i c a t i o n  Block seedstore.  con-  insight  q u e s t i o n s were u s e d as p r o b e s w h e r e v e r  information  perceived  on  q u e s t i o n s gave  as r e f l e c t e d  the  also provided data society  to  encountered.  for  up a n d r e s p o n d e n t s w e r e This  in  and d i f f i c u l t i e s  distribution  access  through  c o n c e r n e d membership  loans,  the  followed  the  were  q u e s t i o n s were o p e n l y p r o b i n g  Subsequent q u e s t i o n s credit  to  experiences.  Response t o  further  a n d how t h e s e  vent  main  respondents  These accounts  give  interview village  and d i s c r i m i n a t i o n  particularly  patronage. gain  interview  perceptions  respondents.  to  the  e n c o u n t e r e d were  elaborate  were the  The q u e s t i o n s p r o v i d e d s c o p e  the  Blocks.  stage  village  designed  a r e a s were i g n o r e d .  interests  were d i s f a v o u r e d t o  development  By t h i s  Q u e s t i o n s were the  communities. of  volunteer  leaders.  The l a s t resources  of  by  same e v e n t s w e r e g i v e n b y  on c o n f l i c t s  they  village  villages.  and which  actions of panchayats.  d e n t s who f e l t  to  the  concerning which areas  p e r s p e c t i v e s on the  from d i f f e r e n t further  groups w i t h i n  feelings  beneficiaries  which had been u n d e r t a k e n  They p r o b e d  and p e r c e i v e d  for  for  supplies  any p r o b l e m s  favouritism  towards  and  encountered certain  74  sectors of the community.  These comments served to elaborate e a r l i e r  material on relations between Block o f f i c i a l s  and v i l l a g e r s generally.  The focus of the interview subsequently shifted to private sources of funds, f i r s t from moneylenders and then from friends. questions followed d i r e c t l y from a discussion of what new and equipment a respondent buy.  These  facilities  needed or wanted, but could not afford to  Turning to friends was thus introduced as a possible alternative  means of attaining these objectives. Questions focused on support between friends and the extent to which they provided a source of investment  funds or compensated f o r lack of access to other f a c i l i t i e s .  Respondents were also asked whether they had considered j o i n t purchase of expensive equipment with friends and neighbours.  These l a t t e r  questions probed feelings with respect to group cooperation, and the s o c i a l as well as f i n a n c i a l b a r r i e r s which may  r e s t r i c t such cooperation.  The l a s t two questions were thrown open to the respondent  to  elaborate on any pressures or b a r r i e r s to his own  freedom of action  which he f e l t from other members of the v i l l a g e .  Respondents were asked  to recount any projects or a c t i v i t i e s which they did NOT want, but f e l t pressured into; or conversely, any proposals which they wanted, but which others had t r i e d to prevent.  They were encouraged to elaborate  on any problems encountered with respect to panchayat a c t i v i t i e s , d i s t r i b u t i o n of lands, application for funds, and any dealings with officials.  These questions provided an opportunity to gain further  information on faction disputes and on relations with Block  officials,  and also on any e a r l i e r parts of the interview where response had been restricted.  It also permitted respondents  to raise any further topics  75  of s p e c i a l concern  to them, whether d i r e c t l y o r m a r g i n a l l y r e l a t e d  the development programmes.  O c c a s i o n a l l y respondents who  had  to  been  r e t i c e n t throughout the i n t e r v i e w r e l a x e d a t t h i s stage and  gave vent  to t h e i r o p i n i o n s , s i n c e they f e l t the formal i n t e r v i e w was  finished.  T h i s was  u s u a l l y t h e time when t h e p i p e was  given free r e i g n .  handed round and  comments  Many such d i s c u s s i o n s l a s t e d long a f t e r the  i n t e r v i e w had been completed and  'formal'  i t p r o v i d e d much o f the depth  c o l o u r to the more r e a d i l y coded t a b u l a r m a t e r i a l which was  and  collected  e a r l i e r i n the i n t e r v i e w . L a t e r i n the a f t e r n o o n when the l a s t i n t e r v i e w was groups o f men  would o f t e n gather  about v i l l a g e l i f e and  concluded,  round t o share a p i p e , and t a l k  i n c i d e n t s they remembered.  broadly  These d i s c u s s i o n s  were e s p e c i a l l y v a l u a b l e i n drawing t o g e t h e r i s o l a t e d accounts  and  i n c i d e n t s i n t o a more composite p i c t u r e of r e l a t i o n s w i t h i n the  villages.  They s e r v e d to emphasise the d i v e r s i t y o f l i v e s and o p i n i o n s even w i t h i n the s m a l l c o n t e x t of the v i l l a g e communities.  They were a l s o among the  most e n j o y a b l e and memorable a s p e c t s of the r e s e a r c h work. v i l l a g e t h e r e were c e r t a i n f a m i l i e s who warmth. evenings,  O f t e n we  In  every  welcomed us w i t h e s p e c i a l  would use the f r o n t o f t h e i r house t o s i t i n the  arid o t h e r v i l l a g e r s would congregate here t o t a l k w i t h I n t e r v i e w d a t a was  conditions.  supplemented by o b s e r v a t i o n of  us.  village  There were makred v a r i a t i o n s between r e s i d e n t i a l a r e a s i n  the s t a t e o f housing  and p r o v i s i o n of a l l p u b l i c a m e n i t i e s i n c l u d i n g  w e l l s , drainage,  community b u i l d i n g s .  and  Such v a r i a t i o n s p r o v i d e a  c l e a r testimony  t o economic d i f f e r e n t i a l s between the wealthy  and t h e p o o r e s t  low c a s t e r e s i d e n t s .  elites  They t e s t i f i e d a l s o t o b i a s e d  76  p r i o r i t i e s i n the investment  of funds to improve v i l l a g e conditions,  and offered v i s u a l support to the complaints of favouritism i n panchayat a c t i v i t i e s which were raised by lower caste  respondents.  Observation also bore out the accounts of limited intermixing of residents from d i f f e r e n t caste sectors of the communities.  Respondents  who l i v e d i n one area of the v i l l a g e would rarely be seen i n other areas where members of a d i f f e r e n t caste l i v e d .  The groups which  c o l l e c t e d f o r a smoke i n the evenings usually included only close neighbours of s i m i l a r caste rank.  On the few occasions when v i l l a g e  leaders or higher caste persons paused beside a lower caste group to inquire after the research, conversation immediately  became s t i l t e d .  Frequently the persons of lower caste would s h i f t t h e i r p o s i t i o n from bed or chair to squat on the f l o o r u n t i l the higher caste person had left.  P a r t i c i p a t i o n i n some of the Block a c t i v i t i e s within the v i l l a g e ,  and also club meetings, provided further opportunities to v e r i f y the descriptions given during the interviews.  I visited different villages  many times i n the company of Block workers, especially at the beginning of the research before the formal interviewing had started.  With few  exceptions, I would be taken f i r s t to the house of the headman, and then to neighbouring  families of similar high caste who l i v e d i n the  wealthiest sector of the v i l l a g e .  I never v i s i t e d low caste r e s i d e n t i a l  areas while i n the company of these o f f i c i a l s , although I often asked to see them.  There were no households i n these areas where Block  o f f i c i a l s were regular or even occasional v i s i t o r s .  V i s i t s to v i l l a g e  club meetings revealed a s i m i l a r homogeneity of membership.  The women  who attended the n u t r i t i o n classes were the same women I had met while  77  v i s i t i n g the Proudhan's family and neighbouring households.  Occasion-  a l l y a few poorly clad women were to be seen squatting on the f l o o r at the back of the meeting but rarely did they take any active part i n the proceedings.  They would hang back while higher caste women crowded  around the demonstrations. little.  I t appeared that they saw and heard very  Many similar observations served to i l l u s t r a t e the r e a l i t y  behind the comments and complaints raised by respondents during the course of the interviews.  Limitations of Data A l l research faces the problem of d i s t o r t i o n or bias which may r e s u l t from the method JJilwhich  data i s collected.  This may be through  the researcher's own observations or the comments of respondents. of the data on which this thesis rests  Most  based on respondents' comments.  There i s no independent check on factual data which they gave concerning such issues as amount of land they possessed, access to d i f f e r e n t clubs and f a c i l i t i e s within the v i l l a g e s , and adoption of new proposals. This raises the question of the degree of r e l i a b i l i t y which can be placed i n such accounts, and possible distortions and biases which may be inherent i n them. A p a r t i a l check on some aspects of response was the closely i n t e r r e l a t e d nature of the questions themselves. up discrepancies i n i n d i v i d u a l accounts.  This served to show  Access to media f o r communi-  cation had d i r e c t implications for a b i l i t y to answer subsequent questions on the topics raised i n clubs or radio programmes and the appraisal of hew projects.  I t i s also linked with questions on amount of contact  78  w i t h o f f i c i a l s , which occur l a t e r i n the i n t e r v i e w . A f u r t h e r v a l u a b l e check on response b i a s was  consistency i n  d e s c r i p t i o n of a c t i v i t i e s such as c l u b attendance which were g i v e n by many d i f f e r e n t respondents.  Claims by some i n d i v i d u a l s t o have p a r -  t i c i p a t e d c o u l d be r e a d i l y checked claimed t o a t t e n d and who  a g a i n s t the comments of o t h e r s  a l s o d e s c r i b e d the membership  Given the e x t e n t o f c r o s s - c h e c k i n g o f accounts which was seems u n l i k e l y t h a t the r e s u l t i n g composite r e p r e s e n t s any s e r i o u s d i s t o r t i o n .  who  composition. possible, i t  p i c t u r e o f these  activities  Respondents were encouraged  t o add  f u r t h e r comments which might be prompted by the d i r e c t q u e s t i o n s throughout  the i n t e r v i e w .  These a d d i t i o n a l comments were o f t e n i n -  s t r u m e n t a l i n c h e c k i n g the r e l i a b i l i t y o f p a r t i c u l a r  responses.  A more important i s s u e from the p e r s p e c t i v e o f t e s t i n g theory  i s the p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t respondents  range o f p r o j e c t s which they adopted modernism.  A number o f respondents  may  the  have exaggerated  the  i n o r d e r t o impress me w i t h were r e l u c t a n t t o c r i t i c i s e  their the  programmes p a r t i c u l a r l y d u r i n g the e a r l y stages o f the i n t e r v i e w when they were unsure how is  my  own  sympathies  might l i e .  However, such b i a s  l i k e l y t o have o c c u r r e d o n l y i n the same d i r e c t i o n o f e x a g g e r a t i n g  claims f o r adoption.  There  is little  reason t o expect t h a t  would wish t o u n d e r s t a t e t h e i r a d o p t i o n o f p r o p o s a l s . overstatement  and those who  respondents  Consistent  o f a d o p t i o n w i l l have the e f f e c t o f r e d u c i n g the  d i f f e r e n t i a l between respondents  who  '  apparent  a c t u a l l y d i d adopt these p r o p o s a l s ,  d i d not b u t were r e l u c t a n t t o say so.  o p e r a t e t o weaken s u p p o r t f o r the hypotheses  Any  such b i a s w i l l  i n t h i s theory.  There i s  thus good reason t o expect t h a t a c t u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n a d o p t i o n r a t e s  79  were g r e a t e r than t h a t i n d i c a t e d by respondents' comments, r a t h e r than the r e v e r s e .  The t e s t s o f s u p p o r t f o r the hypotheses  e r r i n the d i r e c t i o n o f unwarranted  are u n l i k e l y t o  s u p p o r t f o r hypotheses.  w i t h i n the i n t e r v i e w were d e s i g n e d t o reduce the tendency ents t o f e e l o b l i g e d t o support the programmes. was  One  t o ask respondents whether they knew of problems  others.  Questions  f o r respond-  such t e c h n i q u e encountered  by  T h i s e x p r e s s i o n i n the t h i r d p e r s o n gave an o p p o r t u n i t y f o r  respondents t o express ambivalence which they might a t t r i b u t e t o themselves.  f e e l reluctant to  A f u r t h e r c o n s i d e r a t i o n i n e v a l u a t i n g the  accuracy o f accounts i s t h a t any tendency t o o v e r s t a t e a d o p t i o n may expected t o h o l d a c r o s s a l l new  proposals.  be  The v e r y wide d i s c r e p a n c i e s  i n c l a i m e d frequency o f a d o p t i o n o f d i f f e r e n t p r o j e c t s by the same respondents  suggests t h a t t h i s b i a s was  not  pronounced.  Another a s p e c t of the i n t e r v i e w where respondents may  have been  l i k e l y t o d i s t o r t i n f o r m a t i o n they gave concerns those events p r e s e n t t h e i r own  actions i n a negative l i g h t .  V i l l a g e leaders  members o f the dominant f a c t i o n i n the panchayat were c l e a r l y posed t o p r e s e n t panchayat opponents  which  activities in a positive light.  and  predis-  Their  w i t h i n the v i l l a g e were more l i k e l y t o be c r i t i c a l and t o  r e c o u n t i n c i d e n t s and a c t i v i t i e s r e l a t i n g to the Proudhans which l a t t e r were r e l u c t a n t t o d i v u l g e .  S i m i l a r l y , those persons who  the held  p o s i t i o n s o f r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w i t h i n the c o o p e r a t i v e s o c i e t i e s were w i d e l y c r i t i c i s e d f o r f a v o u r i t i s m i n the d i s t r i b u t i o n o f funds they themselves d i d not acknowledge.  which  The many d i f f e r e n t accounts o f  the same i n c i d e n t s which were g i v e n by respondents from a l l s e c t o r s o f the communities  p r o v i d e d an i n v a l u a b l e b a s i s f o r c h e c k i n g these  80  inconsistencies.  Claims to have d i s t r i b u t e d funds and materials could  be checked against the accounts given by i n d i v i d u a l respondents concerning funds received.  S i m i l a r l y , c r i t i c i s m s of the a c t i v i t i e s of  v i l l a g e leaders which were raised by their opponents could be checked against the accounts given by t h e i r supporters and by neutral members of the communities.  They could also be checked against the  recounted by many v i l l a g e r s who  experiences  stood to be influenced by such a c t i v i t i e s .  In other instances, claims made by Proudhans could be checked by observation of amenities the v i l l a g e .  a c t u a l l y provided and t h e i r l o c a t i o n within  In these ways the exaggerated claims of some respondents  could be balanced against the experiences  recounted by others.  More  r e l i a b i l i t y can be placed i n the combined picture than i n i n d i v i d u a l accounts alone. An a d d i t i o n a l factor which proved e s p e c i a l l y advantageous for interviewing respondents from a l l s t r a t a of the communities the mixed c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the researchers. Westerner, who  was  to v i l l a g e r s , I was villagers.  As a f a i r  was  skinned  c l e a r l y both highly educated and wealthy r e l a t i v e able to command considerable prestige among the  Members of the upper stratum were usually more than w i l l i n g  to i n v i t e me into t h e i r homes and talk with me. tageous to be female.  It also proved advan-  I was more r e a d i l y i n v i t e d into the inner parts  of homes where the women generally stay than a male researcher might have been. that I was was  I t was  also r e l a t i v e l y easy for me to reassure v i l l a g e r s  not there to question them i n any o f f i c i a l capacity and  not associated with either the Block o f f i c i a l s or other p o l i t i c a l  interests.  I also proved a very i n t e r e s t i n g anomaly to most v i l l a g e r s  81  and t h i s further encouraged them to talk with me and made i t easy to i n i t i a t e the interviews with them.  The r e l a t i v e l y high prestige which  I could command might have worked against easy relations with lower caste v i l l a g e r s .  I t was with these respondents that my assistant  proved invaluable.  He was himself a v i l l a g e r of low caste rank,  who  usually worked as a farmer on the small landholdings belonging to his family.  He was unusual i n having achieved a general degree at the  regional university, and was r e l a t i v e l y fluent i n English.  As an  educated person he could hold his own i n conversations with o f f i c i a l s and v i l l a g e e l i t e s .  Higher caste respondents usually accepted him  readily as my assistant and d i d not question h i s caste.  Among low  caste v i l l a g e r s he mixed e a s i l y and was w i l l i n g to share food and smoke pipes with them.  He would use the l o c a l v i l l a g e - H i n d i d i a l e c t which  readily put them at ease.  Lower caste respondents talked openly with  him as an equal, while they might have been more r e t i c e n t with a person of higher caste. The importance of these easy relations became evident very early on i n the research.  My f i r s t assistant was a r e l a t i v e l y high  caste university graduate from an urban background.  Many of the  i n i t i a l interviews i n the f i r s t v i l l a g e were conducted by him.  He  had considerable p r i o r experience with some kinds of survey research, having been hired as an interviewer to complete pre-coded questionnaires with urban respondents. i n a v i l l a g e context. average uneducated  These s k i l l s , however, proved inappropriate He found i t very d i f f i c u l t to relate to the  v i l l a g e r , as they d i d with him.  He completed the  formal schedule with high speed but this discouraged any further comment  82  or  e l a b o r a t i o n by respondents.  Much o f the d a t a on v i l l a g e  conflicts  and f a c t i o n r e l a t i o n s which depended on such e l a b o r a t i o n , were l o s t . These e a r l y i n t e r v i e w s were b e r e f t o f comments and proved to  analyse.  I n t e r n a l d i s c r e p a n c i e s i n response  very  c o u l d n o t be  difficult  checked.  My d a t a on t h i s f i r s t v i l l a g e i s t h e l e a s t s a t i s f a c t o r y o f t h e f i v e . The q u a l i t y and depth o f d a t a gained i n the i n t e r v i e w s improved markedly when I took over a l l t h e i n t e r v i e w i n g myself w i t h t h e h e l p o f the village assistant.  He had no p r i o r e x p e r i e n c e o f r e s e a r c h work and  few p r e c o n c e p t i o n s as t o how i t should be done.  He was p e r s o n a l l y  i n t e r e s t e d i n t h e i s s u e s r a i s e d by t h e r e s e a r c h and was more than w i l l i n g t o s i t and t a l k w i t h any respondents experiences.  His insights into v i l l a g e  r e s o u r c e p e r s o n and an e x c e l l e n t  who c a r e d t o r e c o u n t  their  l i f e r e n d e r e d him an i n v a l u a b l e  assistant.  Data P r e s e n t a t i o n The d a t a ^ s ^ o r g a n i z e d i n r e l a t i o n t o the t h r e e major a s p e c t s of  c h o i c e b e h a v i o u r which a r e c o n s i d e r e d i n t h e theory s t a t e d above.  These aspects concern d i f f e r e n t i a l access t o i n f o r m a t i o n , t h e determinants of p e r s u a s i o n t o adopt new p r o p o s a l s when known, and l a s t l y access t o a v a i l a b l e i n p u t f a c i l i t i e s .  Response t o t h e d i r e c t e d q u e s t i o n s  p r o v i d e comparable b a s i c d a t a from a l l respondents of  i n f o r m a t i o n flow, acceptance  differential  on c r i t i c a l  issues  o f new p r o j e c t s , and access t o f a c i l i t i e s .  These d a t a a r e p r e s e n t e d i n t a b u l a r form and p r o v i d e t h e main t e s t o f the hypotheses  s e t out i n the theory.  Throughout the a n a l y s i s  o r g a n i z e d i n terms o f f i v e main c a t e g o r i e s o f respondents. s u p p o r t e r s o f t h e Proudhans, r i v a l of  h i g h e r c a s t e , middle  f a c t i o n s , and n e u t r a l  c a s t e , and low c a s t e .  data >s ^^' /  ;>  These are respondents  The p r e c i s e d e f i n i t i o n  83  of these categories and t h e i r r e l a t i o n to other important variables w i l l be described below. Data are presented mainly i n the form of percentaged d i s t r i butions of response.  This presents special problems only i n the  second stage of the analysis which i s concerned with readiness to adopt new proposals when known.  This e n t a i l s that any respondents who were  ignorant of p a r t i c u l a r issues be omitted from the percent c a l c u l a t i o n . The number of respondents who examined.  are informed varies with each project  The percentages are calculated as the proportion of informed  respondents who have adopted each proposal.  The variable frequencies  on which such percentages are calculated are presented i n separate tables l i s t e d i n the  appendix.  Hypotheses concerning rates of adoption are tested with respect to a l l major innovations sponsored through the Block programmes. Different aspects of the programmes include agriculture, n u t r i t i o n , sanitation, family planning, and u t i l i z a t i o n facilities. study.  of c r e d i t and  investment  S p e c i f i c projects incorporate a time dimension into the  They include the newer projects such as improved seeds, basic  dressing f e r t i l i z e r s and newer specialised pesticides, and also the more widely known projects which have been available i n the region for some years.  An important indication of the explanatory u t i l i t y of  related hypotheses  i s the consistency i n predicted differences i n  adoption rates across a l l these new proposals.  The extent of v a r i a t i o n  i n preferences shown f o r d i f f e r e n t projects i s assessed through r e l a t i v e frequency of adoption when compared with the mean for each category of respondent.  84  Summary tables are provided i n the text, which indicate the mean rate of adoption, averaged over each project included i n d i f f e r e n t aspects of the programmes. These summary means are calculated d i r e c t l y from the f u l l - l e n g t h tables and give equal weighting to each proposal listed.  A case might be made for giving greater weighting to more  widely known projects over recent innovations, or to projects which appear more c r u c i a l than others.  However, there i s no clear rationale  either for making such d i s t i n c t i o n s or f o r determining the r e l a t i v e higher or lower weighting which might be given.  Equal weighting i s  adopted here as more straightforward, and having a d i r e c t l y interpretable meaning i n r e l a t i o n to the set of projects from which i t i s derived. It i s j u s t i f i e d also on the l o g i c a l grounds that each project does represent a separate alternative for choice. These summary tables provide a s i m p l i f i e d index of adoption rates, having the major advantage of s i m p l i c i t y and brevity i n presentation of data.  They can be more readily assimilated by the reader  than the f u l l - l e n g t h tables where some twenty-six separate projects are l i s t e d .  This advantage i s gained at the expense of considerable  reduction i n the data base against which s p e c i f i c hypotheses assessed.  can be  The means necessarily gloss over internal v a r i a t i o n and  occasional reversals from the predicted pattern.  In each case, the  reader who feels the need for a more exacting test of the hypotheses than these summary tables provide, or who i s interested i n following up t h e i r implications f o r s p e c i f i c projects, i s directed to the f u l l length tables which are l i s t e d i n the appendix. Additional data which were gained through comments and discussion  85  with respondents are incorporated throughout the analysis. provide i l l u s t r a t i o n s of the tabular material.  These data  They serve also to  indicate the significance and implications of the hypotheses  with  respect to the development programmes. Characteristics of Respondents The Background c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of respondents are b r i e f l y described below, i n terms of important dimensions Basic data were gathered from a l l  respondents  i n the analysis. caste, land-  concerning  holdings, education, and primary occupations. The many sub-castes represented i n the f i v e v i l l a g e s are ranked into three categories of higher, middle, and low caste. Thakurs comprise the l o c a l l y higher castes.  Brahmins and  Other respondents were  ranked as middle caste, with the t h i r d category of low caste comprising those with s p e c i a l status as "Scheduled Castes".  These three categories  r e f l e c t the main d i s t i n c t i o n s used by respondents to refer to other members of the communities.  They also coincide with r e s i d e n t i a l d i v i s i o n s .  Respondents from d i f f e r e n t sub-castes within these broad ranks were often close neighbours, but rarely did the caste composition of a neighbourhood include families from d i f f e r e n t categories.  Low castes  commonly l i v e i n geographically separate quarters of the v i l l a g e s , w e l l removed from higher caste r e s i d e n t i a l areas.  A detailed breakdown  of the sub-caste composition of each v i l l a g e i s given i n the Table XLII.  appendix,  Table II shows the proportion of respondents within the  three major caste d i v i s i o n s .  Low castes are the most numerous.  comprise roughly one-half of the t o t a l number of respondents. them are either Pasi or Chamar.  They  Most of  The two higher castes of Brahmins and  86  Table I I .  Caste Ranking by V i l l a g e  Percent Respondents by V i l l a g e Caste Rank  One  Brahmin Thakur  Two  Three  Four  Five  Total No.  13 5  0 0  14 9  5 23  14 23  54 72  10 13  Middle Caste  33  44  27  18  33  163  30  Low  49  56  50  54  30  251  47  124  64  110  110  132  540  100  Higher caste)  Caste  Total Respondents  Table I I I .  Landholding of Respondents by V i l l a g e  Percent Respondents by V i l l a g e  Total  Landholding  One  Two  Three  Four  Five  No.  Below Subsistence (0-2 acres)  66  66  59  61  51  324  60  Middle-Sized (3-8 acres)  30  28  31  30  38  173  32  6  10  11  43  8  132  540  100  Large (9 acres & over)  Total Respondents  124  64  110  110  87  Thakurs t o g e t h e r comprise l e s s than one-quarter two  o f a l l households.  In  o f the v i l l a g e s i n the f i r s t Block Brahmins are more numerous than  Thakurs. Block.  T h i s r a t i o i s r e v e r s e d f o r the two The  households.  villages  i n the  second  second v i l l a g e i s d i s t i n c t i v e i n having no h i g h e r Here the prominent c a s t e group i s the  caste  middle-ranking  c a s t e o f Yadovs. The  social position  o f members of a c e r t a i n  caste i s i n f l u e n c e d  not o n l y by r i t u a l s t a t u s but by t h e i r c o r r e s p o n d i n g as landowners.  Landholdings  economic  position  are ranked i n terms of t h r e e main  below s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s , medium h o l d i n g s , and  larger  divisions,  commercial farms.  Respondents are c a t e g o r i z e d on the b a s i s o f the amount o f l a n d which they claimed to own. i s shown i n Table  The  III.  d i s t r i b u t i o n of l a n d h o l d i n g s among respondents  Holdings  of l e s s than two  and o n e - h a l f  acres  are i n s u f f i c i e n t to meet the s u b s i s t e n c e needs of an average f a m i l y . S i x t y p e r c e n t of a l l respondents have below s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s , o n e - t h i r d of these are l a n d l e s s .  These very poor f a m i l i e s  bulk o f a l l a g r i c u l t u r a l l a b o u r e r s i n the v i l l a g e s . o f respondents i n t h i s c a t e g o r y  provide  the  Over e i g h t y p e r c e n t  supplemented t h e i r incomes w i t h  work, the m a j o r i t y working as a g r i c u l t u r a l  and  labourers.  other  Medium-sized  h o l d i n g s o f between t h r e e to e i g h t acres are adequate t o meet s u b s i s t e n c e needs.  Large farms i n t h i s c a t e g o r y may  but are too s m a l l t o be  important  produce a marketable s u r p l u s  as commercial farms or as sources  r e g u l a r employment.for v i l l a g e l a b o u r e r s .  The m a j o r i t y o f t h e s e  farmers  do h i r e  some l a b o u r e r s d u r i n g peak work p e r i o d s but not on a r e g u l a r  basis.  Sixty-six  percent  r e l i e d e n t i r e l y on farming  t h i s p r o p o r t i o n i n c r e a s i n g with s i z e of holdings.  for a  Few  of  livelihood,  o f them ever work  88  as labourers for others.  The l a s t category of larger commercial farms  includes a l l holdings of nine acres and above. produce crops p r i m a r i l y for the market. a l l respondents rank as large farmers. t h i r d of a l l v i l l a g e lands.  These respondents  A t o t a l of eight percent of Together they control over  Three-quarters  one-  rely e n t i r e l y on farming  for a l i v e l i h o o d , the remainder being either large businessmen or professionals.  They are the major employers for a g r i c u l t u r a l labourers  within the v i l l a g e s , almost a l l employing labourers on a regular basis. Land d i s t r i b u t i o n does not vary markedly between the f i v e v i l l a g e s . Fewer families are t o t a l l y landless i n the f i f t h v i l l a g e , but even here half the respondents have below subsistence holdings.  Two Yadov  respondents i n the second v i l l a g e are i n a class of t h e i r own, having close to forty acres of land.  each  They are almost alone i n providing  a source of employment for a g r i c u l t u r a l labourers i n this v i l l a g e . Only two other families marginally qualify as large landowners. Owner-cultivation i s the major source of l i v e l i h o o d for v i l l a g e families.  Other agriculture-related occupations and some small businesses  and trades provide additional income for roughly half the  respondents.  Employment as a g r i c u l t u r a l labourers i s the most frequent source of income among the poorest families. a daily basis. per day  (25$).  The majority compete for hire on  The average wage for labourers i n the region i s Rs  2.00  This rate varies from v i l l a g e to v i l l a g e with the supply  and demand for l o c a l labour.  Only twelve respondents,  or s i x percent  of a l l labourers work on a permanent year-round basis for the same landowner.  Some caste trades are s t i l l carried on i n the v i l l a g e s but  very few respondents r e l y exclusively upon them for a l i v e l i h o o d .  Their  89  T a b l e IV.  Occupation by  Landholding  P e r c e n t Respondents by Landholding Landholding  Occupation Labourers A l l Kinds "6  Business Trade  Both Labor and Trade  Cultivator Only  %  %  %  Total No.  No. %  Below S u b s i s t .  56  22  3  19  324  100  Middle-sized  14  19  1  66  173  100  0  21  0  79  43  100  207  113  11  209  540  Large  T o t a l Respondents  Table V.  Caste by L a n d h o l d i n g  P e r c e n t Respondents by Caste Landholding  Higher Caste* Brahmin Thakur o . o , "o "o  M i d d l e Caste g . "6  Low  Caste %  Below S u b s i s t .  41  11  60  78  Middle-sized  52  45  37  21  7  44  3  1  Large  T o t a l Respondents  54 100%  72 100%  163 100%  251 100%  90  c l i e n t e l e has d e c l i n e d s e v e r e l y i n r e c e n t y e a r s w i t h i n c r e a s e d competition  from manufactured goods a v a i l a b l e i n the markets.  respondents operated  l a r g e r s t o r e s and b u s i n e s s e s  A few wealthy  i n the market c e n t r e s .  A f u r t h e r dimension o f c l a s s p o s i t i o n i s e d u c a t i o n . p r e v a i l i n g l e v e l of education  among respondents i s low.  The  Eighty-two  p e r c e n t o f a l l respondents have n o t r e c e i v e d any s c h o o l i n g beyond primary  l e v e l , and s i x t y p e r c e n t have never attended  between v i l l a g e s a r e s m a l l .  The advantage enjoyed  school.  Differences  by some v i l l a g e s o f  p r o x i m i t y t o secondary s c h o o l s has not i n f l u e n c e d t h e l e v e l o f e d u c a t i o n of  the a d u l t p o p u l a t i o n .  through the s c h o o l s .  I t may do so f o r t h e g e n e r a t i o n now g o i n g  The average f o r y e a r s o f e d u c a t i o n  related to landholding.  Only seven p e r c e n t o f those w i t h below  s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s have gone beyond primary w i t h one-quarter  i s closely  o f m i d d l e - s i z e d farmers  school.  T h i s compares  and o n e - h a l f o f t h e l a r g e  landowners. There i s a h i g h c o r r e l a t i o n between t h e two major v a r i a b l e s of c a s t e r a n k i n g and l a n d h o l d i n g . the lower c a s t e s .  Seventy-eight  Poverty  i s most pronounced among  p e r c e n t o f a l l low c a s t e respondents  had below s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s , and l e s s than one p e r c e n t l a r g e landowners w i t h n i n e a c r e s o r more.  rank as  Among middle c a s t e s t h e  p r o p o r t i o n o f respondents w i t h below s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s f a i l s t o s i x t y p e r c e n t b u t o n l y t h r e e p e r c e n t have l a r g e h o l d i n g s . in and  Variation  l a n d h o l d i n g s i s g r e a t e r among the two h i g h e r c a s t e s of Brahmins Thakurs.  significantly  The average economic p o s i t i o n o f Brahmin respondents i s lower than f o r Thakur respondents.  Forty-one  percent of  Brahmins have below s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s and o n l y a m i n o r i t y o f seven  91  percent are large landowners.  Thakur respondents comprise the majority  of a l l large landowners included i n the study.  Although r i t u a l l y of  lower rank than Brahmins, they c l e a r l y outrank them i n economic strength. Almost half the Thakurs have large holdings, with only eleven percent having below subsistence holdings. Status d i f f e r e n t i a l s i n terms of caste and landholding appear to be c r i t i c a l variables underlying patterns of leadership and opposition within the v i l l a g e communities. Factions A central concern i n t h i s study i s with power relations and patterns of a f f i l i a t i o n within the v i l l a g e communities.  This i s par-  t i c u l a r l y related to l o c i of control over those mechanisms which i n fluence decision processes i n connection with the development programmes. The immediate focus of questions i n the interviews was on the role and a c t i v i t i e s of Proudhans. or v i l l a g e councils.  Proudhans are the elected heads of panchayats  Much of the formal a c t i v i t i e s of the development  programmes are organized through the medium of these panchayats.  The  incumbent Proudhans are thus i n a position to exercise considerable control over the introduction of these programmes.  In the region studied  the previous panchayat elections were cancelled by the State government under threat of p o l i t i c a l unrest.  The incumbent Proudhans had thus  held o f f i c e within the panchayats for ten years preceding the study. New elections were held shortly after the study was completed. The p o s i t i o n of the elected Proudhans within each v i l l a g e was d i r e c t l y linked with the economic p o s i t i o n of prominent castes.  In a l l  f i v e v i l l a g e s the incumbent Proudhan was a member of the caste group  92  within which the majority of large landowners were concentrated. In four communities t h i s was one of the two higher castes of Brahmins or Thakurs.  In the second v i l l a g e prominent landowners are a l l from the  middle-ranking caste of Yadovs and here the incumbent Proudhan i s a Yadov.  There are no higher caste households within this v i l l a g e .  In  the other two v i l l a g e s i n the f i r s t Block the' larger landowners are Brahmins, as are the incumbent Proudhans.  In the second Block Thakurs  are prominent landowners and the two Proudhans are Thakurs. Detailed questions concerning the a c t i v i t y of the panchayats and v i l l a g e c o n f l i c t s provided the basis for i d e n t i f y i n g any prominent r i v a l factions within the communities.  A l l respondents were encouraged  to describe any such c o n f l i c t s i n d e t a i l and to indicate which sectors of the community were d i r e c t l y involved.  The picture of v i l l a g e p o l i t i c s  which emerged from these accounts coincides very closely with that described by Epstein (1973, 180).  Epstein notes that "Factions  were  referred to by v i l l a g e r s i n each case under the name of their i n d i v i d u a l leaders".  She continues that naming factions after t h e i r leaders seems  a widespread phenomenon.  There i s a danger i n applying other labels  to the factions of giving i n s u f f i c i e n t emphasis to the importance of informal leaders as the single unifying focus of the factions The same pattern emerged i n my own study.  (ibid 180).  Respondents i d e n t i f i e d r i v a l  factions within the community invariably through naming a p a r t i c u l a r individual or individuals as prominent opponents to the incumbent Proudhan.  The i d e n t i t y of these opponents was confirmed through the  many d i f f e r e n t accounts of the panchayat and v i l l a g e c o n f l i c t s given by respondents from a l l sectors of the communities.  93  A second o b s e r v a t i o n made by E p s t e i n i s t h a t f a c t i o n a l oppos i t i o n i s c l o s e l y t i e d up w i t h the economic f o r t u n e s o f i n d i v i d u a l magnates.  She suggests t h a t one can c o r r e l a t e the i n c r e a s e and d e c l i n e  i n f a c t i o n a l o p p o s i t i o n w i t h the economic and s o c i a l p r o g r e s s o f t h e t h r e e p r o g r e s s i v e magnates i n t h e two v i l l a g e s which she s t u d i e d ( i b i d 182) .  S i m i l a r t r e n d s c o u l d be found i n my own study.  The  p o s i t i o n o f prominent opponents w i t h i n t h e communities appeared t o be r e l a t e d t o two main f a c t o r s : the r e l a t i v e dominance o f a p a r t i c u l a r c a s t e as l a r g e landowners, and t h e e x t e n t o f economic d i s p a r i t i e s w i t h i n t h i s caste.  P a r t i c u l a r v i l l a g e s d i f f e r w i t h r e s p e c t t o the s i z e and  r e l a t i v e s t r e n g t h o f f a c t i o n s a l i g n e d a g a i n s t t h e Proudhans, b u t the p r i n c i p l e u n d e r l y i n g them i s s i m i l a r .  In f o u r o f the f i v e v i l l a g e s the  major landowners were c l e a r l y c o n c e n t r a t e d i n one p a r t i c u l a r  caste.  In each o f these v i l l a g e s the incumbent Proudhan was a member o f t h i s caste.  A l s o each o f the i n d i v i d u a l s named as prominent opponents t o  the Proudhans were members o f the same c a s t e .  In the t h i r d  village  the prominence enjoyed by Brahmin landowners was l e s s c l e a r - c u t .  Several  o f the Thakur respondents a r e a l s o l a r g e landowners and Thakurs are r e p r e s e n t e d i n t h e v i l l a g e i n s i g n i f i c a n t numbers.  In t h i s  village  the Proudhan was a Brahmin b u t the i n d i v i d u a l c i t e d as a prominent opponent was a Thakur.  I s o l a t e d respondents from lower c a s t e s do  rank as l a r g e landowners b u t they were never c i t e d by o t h e r respondents as prominent opponents o f the incumbent Proudhans.  It i s likely  that  w h i l e they might command p r e s t i g e as i n d i v i d u a l landowners, they  lack  the b a c k i n g o f o t h e r l a r g e landowners w i t h i n t h e i r own c a s t e , w i t h which t o c h a l l e n g e the economic prominence o f h i g h e r c a s t e  factions.  The r e l a t i v e s t r e n g t h o f prominent opponents t o the Proudhans  94  Table VI.  Faction by Caste for Five V i l l a g e s  Number of Respondents by V i l l a g e Caste  One  Two  Three  Four  Five  Pr.  Riv.  Pr.  Riv.  Pr.  Riv.  Pr.  High Brahmin Thakur  6 0  6 0  0 0  0 0  10 0  0 9  2 6  0 13  2 6  5 16  Middle  1  1  12  0  0  0  0  0  1  4  Low  0  2  0  0  0  0  2  0  3  0  Table VII.  Riv.  Pr.  Riv.  Faction by Landholding for Five Villages  Number of Respondents by V i l l a g e Landholding i n Acres  One Pr.  Two  Three  Four  Five  Riv. Pr. Riv. Pr. Riv. Pr. Riv. Pr. Riv.  Small (0-2 acres)  2  3  2  0  2  0  2  2  2  6  Medium (3-8 acres)  4  5  6  0  6  3  2  9  6  11  Large  1  1  4  0  2  6  6  2  6  8  (9+ acres)  95  do d i f f e r from v i l l a g e to v i l l a g e .  In the t h i r d v i l l a g e mentioned  above, and also i n the f i r s t v i l l a g e studied, the Proudhans do not command s i g n i f i c a n t l y greater landholdings than other higher respondents.  caste  In both cases prominent opponents are themselves large  landowners and present a strong challenge to the leadership of the Proudhans.  In the two v i l l a g e s within the second Block the Thakur  Proudhans rank among the largest landowners within the caste.  In  both these v i l l a g e s two individuals were c i t e d as prominent opponents but none appeared to present a major challenge to the Proudhans.  In  the remaining v i l l a g e the Yadov Proudhan and a close r e l a t i v e each command landholdings several times greater than that of any other household within the v i l l a g e . c i t e d as a prominent opponent.  In t h i s one v i l l a g e no i n d i v i d u a l was Grumbling against the Proudhan was as  common as i n other v i l l a g e s but has not c r y s t a l l i z e d around any competing leader.  A similar s i t u a t i o n i s described by Epstein.  Two magnates  control very large landholdings i n one v i l l a g e which she studied. Their prominence i s c l e a r l y established and as yet no new contestants have emerged.  She notes that previous r i v a l s have since p a r t i t i o n e d  t h e i r estates and are no longer counted among the richest Peasants (1973, 181).  She suggests that factionalism may recur as soon as  present magnates die and t h e i r estates are divided among their heirs (ibid 184). A t h i r d feature noted by Epstein i s the informal character of the factions or cliques of supporters which surround these prominent individuals.  Epstein concurs with Nicholas i n stressing that "members  can be connected to a faction only through the a c t i v i t y of a leader  96  s i n c e they u n i t has no c o r p o r a t e e x i s t e n c e o r c l e a r s i n g l e  principle  o f r e c r u i t m e n t " ( E p s t e i n 1973, 180;'Nicholas 1965, 28). A s i m i l a r p a t t e r n emerged from my own study. ents appeared  The Proudhans and prominent  t o form t h e c e n t r e o f a l o o s e c l i q u e o f c l o s e  and s u p p o r t e r s who backed  them i n v i l l a g e c o n f l i c t s .  oppon-  friends  These s u p p o r t e r s  were n o t i n c o r p o r a t e d as f o r m a l p a r t i e s i n v i l l a g e p o l i t i c s .  They were  drawn mainly from the l o c a l i z e d r e s i d e n t i a l a r e a where t h e l e a d e r himself l i v e d .  Not i n f r e q u e n t l y they appeared t o be l i n k e d  k i n s h i p t i e s w i t h the l e a d e r .  In the two v i l l a g e s where two prominent  opponents were named, they drew s u p p o r t e r s from separate w i t h i n the v i l l a g e .  through  localities  The m a j o r i t y o f such s u p p o r t e r s a r e o f the same  c a s t e as the l e a d e r and o f r e l a t i v e l y s i m i l a r economic p o s i t i o n . d i s p a r i t i e s w i t h i n t h e prominent  landowning  i n the composition o f these c l i q u e s .  Economic  c a s t e tended t o be r e f l e c t e d  One prominent  f i g u r e would tend  t o draw s u p p o r t e r s from r e l a t i v e l y s m a l l e r landowners w i t h i n the c a s t e than those who supported an opposing l e a d e r . are f a r from  However, such  divisions  rigid.  The core members o f p a r t i c u l a r c l i q u e s c o u l d be r e a d i l y  identi-  f i e d through t h e i n t e r v i e w s , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t h e d i s c u s s i o n s o f v i l l a g e conflicts.  Supporters shared the same p e r s p e c t i v e s on such  and s i d e d w i t h the l e a d e r i n d i s p u t e s w i t h opposing c l i q u e s .  conflicts They  were a l s o w e l l known t o o t h e r respondents throughout t h e communities who were not themselves  aligned with p a r t i c u l a r c l i q u e s .  Other  respondents  commonly r e f e r r e d t o such c l i q u e s by i n d i c a t i n g the l o c a l i t y where most of t h e members  lived.  The boundaries o f these c l i q u e s are l e s s r e a d i l y drawn.  Again,  9.7  as E p s t e i n observes, is relatively fluid.  t h e s t r e n g t h o f support  for particular  leaders  I t may vary w i t h the economic f o r t u n e s o f these  l e a d e r s and t h e i r a b i l i t y t o reward s u p p o r t e r s  through patronage o r  through defence o f common i n t e r e s t s ( i b i d 181). O c c a s i o n a l l y r e spondents from o u t s i d e t h e l o c a l i t y and the c a s t e o f the main of a c l i q u e i n d i c a t e d s t r o n g support v i l l a g e disputes.  supporters  f o r a p a r t i c u l a r leader i n  T h i s o c c u r r e d o n l y on an i n d i v i d u a l b a s i s and d i d  not i n c o r p o r a t e o r g a n i z e d  groups o f such respondents.  i n d i v i d u a l s themselves had some s p e c i a l g r i e v a n c e l e a d e r s and o f f e r e d t h e i r support  Commonly the  a g a i n s t opposing  f o r t h i s reason.  I n one v i l l a g e t h e  Proudhan had s e v e r a l c l o s e f r i e n d s among low c a s t e respondents.  This  f r i e n d s h i p appeared t o be based p r i m a r i l y on t h e f a c t t h a t they brewed palm wine.  In g e n e r a l , however, these  c l i q u e s appear t o c r o s s - c u t  c a s t e boundaries t o o n l y a l i m i t e d e x t e n t . the i n f o r m a l c h a r a c t e r o f such c l i q u e s .  T h i s may p a r t l y  reflect  They a r e not o r g a n i z e d  p a r t i e s i n t o which members a r e r e c r u i t e d .  The c l o s e c o i n c i d e n c e  political between  c a s t e and l a n d h o l d i n g may a l s o serve t o l i m i t c r o s s - c u t t i n g i n t e r e s t s . Very few low c a s t e respondents rank as l a r g e landowners on a p a r with members o f h i g h e r  castes.  F u r t h e r c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f the dynamics o f these o v e r time l i e s o u t s i d e t h e scope o f t h e p r e s e n t  study.  faction  alliances  Factions are  u t i l i z e d w i t h i n the t h e s i s p r i m a r i l y as i n d i c a t o r s o f c l o s e a s s o c i a t i o n with  incumbent Proudhans and o f o p p o s i t i o n t o them.  They a r e c o n s i d e r e d  from the p e r s p e c t i v e o f how such r e l a t i o n s i n f l u e n c e the d e t e r m i n a t i o n o f c h o i c e parameters i n r e l a t i o n t o the development programmes. Respondents a r e c a t e g o r i z e d on the b a s i s o f f i v e main d i v i s i o n s .  98  These a r e t h e incumbent Proudhans and c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s ; prominent r i v a l s and t h e i r a s s o c i a t e s , and n e u t r a l respondents of h i g h e r middle-ranking  c a s t e , and low c a s t e .  caste,  Caste i s u t i l i z e d as t h e p r i m a r y  measure o f s t a t u s d i s p a r i t y r e l a t i v e t o the incumbent Proudhans, w i t h l a n d h o l d i n g as a secondary measure.  In f o u r o f t h e f i v e v i l l a g e s the  Proudhans a r e members o f a h i g h r a n k i n g c a s t e , which i s a l s o the c a s t e which i n c l u d e s t h e m a j o r i t y o f a l l l a r g e landowners. exceptions,  With few  respondents from middle and lower c a s t e s have o n l y  or middle-sized  landholdings.  marginal  In e f f e c t , t h e r e f o r e , t h e i r c a t e g o r i z a -  t i o n on t h e b a s i s o f c a s t e a l s o s e r v e s as an approximate c o n t r o l f o r s t a t u s d i s p a r i t y i n terms o f economic p o s i t i o n . forms a p a r t i a l e x c e p t i o n . middle-ranking in the v i l l a g e . and  The second v i l l a g e  Here t h e Proudhan i s a member o f t h e  c a s t e o f Yadovs.  No h i g h e r c a s t e f a m i l i e s a r e r e s i d e n t  I n t h i s case t h e l a n d h o l d i n g s  commanded by t h e Proudhan  immediate a s s o c i a t e s a r e s e v e r a l times l a r g e r t h a n t h e h o l d i n g s  c o n t r o l l e d by any o t h e r m i d d l e - c a s t e  respondents.  o f these n e u t r a l respondents as " m i d d l e - c a s t e "  The c a t e g o r i z a t i o n  thus does f u n c t i o n as a  measure o f marked s t a t u s d i s p a r i t y between them and t h e Proudhans. Some attempt i s made t o estimate l a n d h o l d i n g on the d e t e r m i n a t i o n  t h e independent e f f e c t of  o f c h o i c e parameters.  Detailed analysis  o f t h e r e l a t i v e e f f e c t s o f c a s t e r a n k i n g and economic r a n k i n g s t r i c t e d by t h e very h i g h c o r r e l a t i o n between them.  i s re-  When both v a r i a b l e s  are c o n t r o l l e d t h e r e s u l t i n g c e l l s i z e s a r e o f t e n too s m a l l t o p e r m i t s t a t i s t i c a l l y meaningful m a n i p u l a t i o n  o f data.  Data from the f i v e v i l l a g e s a r e combined throughout t h i s a n a l y s i s . The p r i m a r y o b j e c t i v e o f t h i s study  i s t o examine and t e s t a p r e d i c t i v e  99  t h e o r y o f s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s as determinants o f c h o i c e parameters.  The  theory p r e s e n t s an a b s t r a c t s e t o f p r o p o s i t i o n s which a r e p o t e n t i a l l y a p p l i c a b l e t o any community, b o t h i n I n d i a and elsewhere, w i t h t h e a p p r o p r i a t e o p e r a t i o n a l i z a t i o n o f c e n t r a l concepts.  A single  village  does n o t c o n s t i t u t e a u n i t f o r a n a l y s i s b u t r a t h e r a s e t o f s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s which can be a b s t r a c t e d from t h i s community.  In t a k i n g  this  approach i t i s i n e v i t a b l e t h a t some o f the r i c h n e s s o f the d a t a and the immediacy o f l i f e e x p e r i e n c e s f o r respondents i s l o s t . e n t a i l s a c e r t a i n a b s t r a c t i o n from r e a l i t y .  Theory  always  On the o t h e r hand, too  c l o s e a f o c u s on p a r t i c u l a r v i l l a g e s may obscure t h e a n a l y s i s o f these a b s t r a c t r e l a t i o n s which u n d e r l i e s p e c i f i c e v e n t s .  Data from s e p a r a t e  v i l l a g e s are i n t r o d u c e d f o r i l l u s t r a t i v e purposes, and a l s o when c r i t i c a l v a r i a t i o n s o c c u r i n t h e key v a r i a b l e s which a r e examined.  One  such i n s t a n c e i s v a r i a t i o n i n t h e l o c u s o f c o n t r o l over c o o p e r a t i v e s o c i e t i e s r e l a t i v e t o t h e p o s i t i o n o f t h e incumbent  Proudhan.  No major  v a r i a t i o n s o c c u r i n t h e manner i n which development  programmes were  sponsored i n the s e p a r a t e v i l l a g e s o r i n the p r o j e c t s which were i n cluded.  F u r t h e r examination o f the dynamics o f p o l i t i c s and s o c i a l  change w i t h i n i n d i v i d u a l v i l l a g e s l i e s beyond t h e scope o f t h i s study.  CHAPTER FOUR  CHOICE ALTERNATIVES IN RURAL DEVELOPMENT  The  Community Development Programmes sponsor a s e r i e s o f r e l a t e d  innovations i n a g r i c u l t u r e , n u t r i t i o n , s a n i t a t i o n , family w e l f a r e and p u b l i c a m e n i t i e s .  These p r o j e c t s  p r o v i d e the framework f o r  a n a l y s i s o f c h o i c e b e h a v i o u r i n the v i l l a g e communities. the p r o j e c t s  i s measured p r i m a r i l y through r a t e s  a p p r o p r i a t e , the  amount o f investment.  planning,  Response t o  o f a d o p t i o n , and where  Particular projects  and t h e i r  p r a c t i c a l i n t e r r e l a t i o n and s i g n i f i c a n c e i n the t o t a l development programme a r e d e s c r i b e d  below.  A g r i c u l t u r a l E x t e n s i o n i s accorded major emphasis i n the programmes. The  package o f p r a c t i c e s  chemical f e r t i l i z e r s ,  include  introduction  o f h i g h y i e l d i n g seeds,  and p e s t i c i d e s , and new c r o p sowing t e c h n i q u e s .  A l l a r e designed t o i n c r e a s e  p r o d u c t i v i t y per acre.  High Y i e l d i n g V a r i e t i e s o f wheat and r i c e have been developed and t e s t e d on e x p e r i m e n t a l farms and t h e i r use i s promoted through t h e B l o c k Programmes.  Under o p t i m a l growing c o n d i t i o n s  they have double o r  t r e b l e t h e y i e l d p o t e n t i a l o f indigenous seeds.  The most r e c e n t im-  proved v a r i e t i e s o f f e r higher q u a l i t y p l a n t s with respect resistance, shedding.  and reduced s u s c e p t i b i l i t y t o c o l l a p s e In the t a b l e s  t o disease  o r premature  grain  these a r e r e f e r r e d t o as h i g h y i e l d and  improved h i g h y i e l d seeds r e s p e c t i v e l y .  They i n d i c a t e a time dimension  i n propensity for adoption of innovations i n a g r i c u l t u r e .  100  101  The h i g h e r p r o d u c t i v e p o t e n t i a l o f new v a r i e t i e s o f seeds i s dependent upon i n c r e a s e d i n p u t s o f f e r t i l i z e r , p e s t i c i d e s , and i r r i g a t i o n , r e l a t i v e t o o l d e r indigenous  seeds.  Optimal  results also  r e q u i r e improved techniques o f s o i l p r e p a r a t i o n , the s p a c i n g o f p l a n t s and weeding.  S i g n i f i c a n t advantages from the adoption o f these  seeds  i s thus c o n t i n g e n t upon t h e f u r t h e r a d o p t i o n o f o t h e r p r a c t i c e s i n cluded i n a g r i c u l t u r a l Chemical two broad  extension.  F e r t i l i z e r s which a r e promoted through types.  the programmes a r e o f  The b e t t e r known t o p d r e s s i n g s are r i c h i n n i t r a t e s  and a r e recommended f o r a p p l i c a t i o n a t i n t e r v a l s a f t e r  germination.  The newer b a s i c d r e s s i n g s a r e r i c h i n phosphates and a r e recommended for  a p p l i c a t i o n t o the s o i l p r i o r t o p l a n t i n g .  The dosage recommended  i s about f i f t y k i l o p e r acre o f both b a s i c and top d r e s s i n g f e r t i l i z e r s for  medium y i e l d seeds,  and a hundred k i l o o r more f o r h i g h  seeds which a r e more r e s p o n s i v e t o f e r t i l i z e r P e s t i c i d e s i n c l u d e standard general-purpose specialized products.  yielding  input.  t y p e s , and a l s o newer  They a r e p a r t i c u l a r l y recommended f o r use w i t h  h i g h y i e l d i n g seeds which a r e l e s s d i s e a s e r e s i s t a n t than  indigenous  v a r i e t i e s , and a l s o w i t h the p r a c t i c e o f m u l t i p l e c r o p p i n g which i n c r e a s e s the r i s k o f c r o s s i n f e c t i o n .  A t p r e s e n t , concern w i t h r e -  d u c i n g crop l o s s e s from d i s e a s e and p e s t s outweighs concern p o s s i b l e long-term n e g a t i v e e f f e c t s from over-use  with  o f chemical  pesticides.  These t h r e e p r o j e c t s comprise the core o f the package o f p r a c t i c e s i n a g r i c u l t u r a l extension. for  T h e i r combined usage i s necessary  s i g n i f i c a n t and s u s t a i n e d i n c r e a s e i n y i e l d s .  New crop sowing  techniques which a r e promoted i n c o n j u n c t i o n w i t h the above p r o j e c t s  102  i n c l u d e m u l t i p l e c r o p p i n g , l i n e sowing and deeper M u l t i p l e Cropping.  ploughing.  L o c a l a g r i c u l t u r a l r e s e a r c h s t a t i o n s have e x p e r i -  mented s u c c e s s f u l l y w i t h t h r e e and f o u r c r o p r o t a t i o n o f wheat, r i c e , maize and a v e g e t a b l e c r o p , u s i n g f a s t r i p e n i n g v a r i e t i e s o f  seeds.  With i n t e n s i v e c r o p p i n g i t i s p o s s i b l e f o r a f a m i l y o f average to be m a r g i n a l l y s e l f s u f f i c i e n t on two  acres of land.  thus has s p e c i a l v a l u e f o r the p o o r e s t farmers. a heavy a p p l i c a t i o n o f f e r t i l i z e r s ,  The  size  scheme  However, i t r e q u i r e s  p r e v e n t i v e crop s p r a y i n g , and  also  good i r r i g a t i o n f a c i l i t i e s t o support the summer c r o p . L i n e Sowing t e c h n i q u e s f o r r i c e and wheat are promoted t o r e p l a c e the t r a d i t i o n a l method o f b r o a d c a s t i n g o r s c a t t e r i n g seeds.  The  technique  ensures adequate space and l i g h t f o r i n d i v i d u a l p l a n t s and may s i d e r a b l y improve y i e l d s w i t h a l l types o f seed.  con-  A r e l a t e d disadvant-  age i s the e x t r a l a b o u r and p l a n t i n g - t i m e r e q u i r e d . Mouldboard Plough.  The t r a d i t i o n a l I n d i a n plough comprises  wooden s h a f t w i t h a p o i n t e d t i p which may I t s c r a t c h e s a s h a l l o w groove new to  a straight  be strengthened w i t h  iron.  i n the s o i l but does not t u r n i t .  The  type o f mouldboard plough has a curved s t e e l blade which p e n e t r a t e s a g r e a t e r depth and a l s o t u r n s the s o i l  i n a furrow.  I t has  the  advantage o f a e r a t i n g the s o i l more e f f e c t i v e l y and a l s o t u r n i n g i n weeds. These a g r i c u l t u r a l p r o j e c t s comprise t i v e s f o r c h o i c e p r e s e n t e d t o farmers. y i e l d s on l i m i t e d l a n d h o l d i n g s .  the core o f new  alterna-  A l l are d e s i g n e d t o r a i s e  The p r o j e c t s are c l o s e l y  so t h a t o p t i m a l y i e l d s r e q u i r e t h e i r simultaneous y i e l d i n g seeds and a d d i t i o n a l f e r t i l i z e r s  crop  interrelated  a d o p t i o n , but h i g h  are e s p e c i a l l y  important.  103  Nutrition Programmes t o improve standards o f n u t r i t i o n complement t h e aims o f a g r i c u l t u r a l e x t e n s i o n .  Related p r o j e c t s include t r a i n i n g i n  n u t r i t i o n and food p r e p a r a t i o n , promotion o f k i t c h e n v e g e t a b l e and p o u l t r y farming.  The f i r s t two a r e d i r e c t e d mainly  are i n t r o d u c e d through  a t women and  v i l l a g e c l u b s e s t a b l i s h e d f o r them.  N u t r i t i o n T r a i n i n g C l a s s e s a r e designed w i t h the requirements  gardens,  t o f a m i l i a r i z e v i l l a g e women  o f a balanced d i e t .  They i n c l u d e a d v i c e on h i g h  p r o t e i n foods and t h e s i g n i f i c a n c e o f v i t a m i n s and f r e s h  vegetables.  They f u r t h e r a d v i s e on methods o f food p r e p a r a t i o n and p r e s e r v a t i o n t o maximize n u t r i t i o n a l Vegetable  Gardens.  value. Women a r e encouraged t o c u l t i v a t e s m a l l s t r i p s o f  l a n d around t h e i r houses and w i t h i n c e n t r a l c o u r t y a r d s t o grow v e g e t a b l e s . Small packets o f v e g e t a b l e  seeds a r e s u p p l i e d f r e e t o promote t h e scheme.  P o u l t r y Farming d i f f e r s from p r e c e d i n g p r o j e c t s i n b e i n g d i r e c t e d towards o r g a n i z e d groups w i t h i n t h e communities and n o t t o i n d i v i d u a l Grants a r e a v a i l a b l e through  families.  the Blocks t o s u b s i d i z e t h e e s t a b l i s h m e n t  A c o n d i t i o n o f t h e g r a n t i s t h a t o n e - t h i r d o f the eggs  o f the farms.  produced s h o u l d be d i s t r i b u t e d f r e e t o pregnant women and young c h i l d r e n i n the v i l l a g e .  Sanitation The t h i r d a s p e c t o f t h e programme i s concerned standards o f hygiene  and s a n i t a t i o n i n the v i l l a g e s .  promotion o f w a t e r - s e a l e d Water-sealed designed  improving  Projects include  l a t r i n e d and p r o t e c t e d d r i n k i n g water s u p p l i e s .  l a t r i n e s promoted through  f o r v i l l a g e use.  with  t h e programmes have been s p e c i a l l y  They comprise a simple c o n c r e t e mould  installed  over a s e p t i c tank and can be f l u s h e d w i t h a s m a l l q u a n t i t y o f water.  104  Their  major  health  s u r r o u n d i n g the reduces waste  the  advantage  villages  risks of  is  health  a year.  In  officials.  more p e r m a n e n t are  protect for  water  to  the  open  newly  and a n i m a l s ,  Handpumps p r o v i d e  the  use of  chemical  chemical p u r i f i e r s  is  all  open  wells  offers  surrounding walls  and f o r  are  improvements  a further  source of  once  by  supplies.  Limited grants  puri-  such  o c c a s i o n a l l y done  p r o t e c t e d water  and have h i g h  which  Treated  s t y l e d modern w e l l s  need f o r  fields  fertilizer.  treating  this  from s u r f a c e r u n o f f .  a These  which  available to  private  protected  water.  Planning objective  encourage and f a c i l i t a t e children.  nent,  Sterilization  c h e a p , and r e l a t i v e l y  mobile  clinics.  distributed  Use o f  free  are  than other expensive  recommended f o r  of  this  restrictions is  the  of  size,  family  a c c o r d e d the  condoms i s  techniques.  to  clinics,  ideally  p e r f o r m o n men  also encouraged, with  but  Contraceptive  and c o m p l i c a t e d t o women.  programmes  is to  most emphasis as a perma-  planning drives  government  village  aspect of  simple operation  during family  sponsored through  emphasis but  amounts o f  recommended f o r  concrete  The i m m e d i a t e  are  Small  Provision of  lined with  the  use of  flies  promoted through  p r o v i s i o n o f modern p u b l i c w e l l s  Family  two  c l o s u r e to  some l o c a l i t i e s  answer  household w e l l s .  to  is  and new f a c i l i t i e s .  twice  wells  their  traditional  c a n a l s o be c o l l e c t e d and r e c y c l e d as  as p o t a s h and b l e a c h a r e or  the  d i s e a s e t r a n s m i s s i o n and tapeworms.  P r o t e c t e d D r i n k i n g Water fiers  over  in are  the  use and a r e  some b e i n g  villages.  generally  pills not  in  are  I.U.D.'s  given  also  generally  less  available,  105  A i d and  Grant  Facilities  Funds and m a t e r i a l s  are made a v a i l a b l e through the  f a c i l i t a t e investment i n the programmes. and  o t h e r s u p p l i e s , and  They i n c l u d e  a l s o s p e c i a l a i d and  B l o c k s to  loans,  grants,  emergency funds.  Two  major i n s t i t u t i o n s which support investment i n a g r i c u l t u r e are v i l l a g e c o o p e r a t i v e s o c i e t i e s , and stores.  government-operated seed and  In a d d i t i o n , s p e c i a l - p u r p o s e g r a n t s and  a v a i l a b l e t o i n d i v i d u a l farmers t o f i n a n c e facilities,  a g r i c u l t u r a l implements and  schemes i n c l u d e of clothes, men  who  are unable t o work.  work animals.  are  irrigation  Temporary a i d  occasionally distribution  money t o f a m i l i e s o f handicapped  Other l i m i t e d funds are a v a i l a b l e to p r o -  mote supplementary employment schemes f o r the  Public  " t a c c a v i " loans  investment i n  g r a n t s f o r house r e p a i r s , and  f l o u r , seed g r a i n , and  fertilizer  landless.  Amenities T h i s l a s t a s p e c t o f the programmes i s d e s i g n e d t o  l i v i n g conditions  f o r the v i l l a g e communities as a whole.  improve Priority is  g i v e n to t h r e e main a m e n i t i e s ; good a c c e s s r o a d s , a p r i m a r y s c h o o l , a community h a l l or panchayat house. sponsored i n c l u d e paved l a n e s ,  Other a m e n i t i e s which may  g u t t e r s , b r i d g e s and  For  a l l such p r o j e c t s  the development programmes i s u s u a l l y c o n f i n e d  the  basis.  clinics  contribution  to p r o v i s i o n of  w i t h v i l l a g e r s b e i n g expected to p r o v i d e a l l o r p a r t o f the l a b o u r on a v o l u n t a r y  be  drainage where  needed, modern p u b l i c w e l l s , and p o s s i b l y j u n i o r s c h o o l s and in larger v i l l a g e centres.  and  of  materials  necessary  106  Adoption o f P r o j e c t s The p a t t e r n of a d o p t i o n of these p r o j e c t s by v i l l a g e , i s summarized i n Table V I I I .  T h i s t a b l e i n d i c a t e s the mean r a t e o f  a d o p t i o n , averaged over each p r o j e c t i n c l u d e d i n v a r i o u s a s p e c t s o f the programmes d e s c r i b e d above. i n d e r i v i n g these means.  The  Each p r o j e c t i s g i v e n equal  weighting  f u l l - l e n g t h t a b l e , i n which frequency  of  a d o p t i o n o f each p r o j e c t i s l i s t e d s e p a r a t e l y , i s g i v e n i n the appendix Table XLII."'"  The  implementation programmes.  summary t a b l e i n d i c a t e s the r e s t r i c t e d and  piecemeal  o f p r o j e c t s i n each f i e l d o f a c t i v i t y covered by  A g r i c u l t u r a l e x t e n s i o n has been r e l a t i v e l y more s u c c e s s -  f u l , perhaps r e f l e c t i n g the g r e a t e r emphasis g i v e n by B l o c k to t h i s aspect o f the programme, but averaged from i m p r e s s i v e .  S a n i t a t i o n , n u t r i t i o n , and  have p r o g r e s s i v e l y lower average  officials  adoption r a t e s are f a r family planning projects  r a t e s o f a d o p t i o n by v i l l a g e r s .  major c r e d i t f a c i l i t i e s have been u t i l i z e d by o n l y one-quarter o f those e l i g i b l e . and  the  i n the remaining  or  Even less  Three o f the f i v e v i l l a g e s l a c k even b a s i c a m e n i t i e s , two p r o v i s i o n i s f a r from comprehensive.  These  v i l l a g e s c l e a r l y p r o v i d e no e x c e p t i o n t o the g e n e r a l e x p e r i e n c e o f l i m i t e d achievements from r u r a l development programmes evidenced i n many p r e v i o u s s t u d i e s i n I n d i a n v i l l a g e s .  T h i s i s not w i t h s t a n d i n g  the i n i t i a l b i a s i n s e l e c t i o n o f v i l l a g e s f o r the study which f a v o u r e d those which had r e c e i v e d r e l a t i v e l y g r e a t e r a t t e n t i o n from Block workers. Other v i l l a g e s i n the a r e a are l i k e l y t o have lower r a t e s o f i n n o v a t i o n .  A d e t a i l e d e x p l a n a t i o n o f how t a b u l a r m a t e r i a l was d e r i v e d , and the c o n s t r u c t i o n o f summary t a b l e s o f r e s u l t s , i s g i v e n i n the chapter on Research Procedures, e s p e c i a l l y pages 82 - 85.  107  Table V I I I . Summary o f Mean Adoption f o r a l l P r o j e c t s by V i l l a g e  Rates  Village A s p e c t o f Programme  One  Two  Agriculture Nutrition Sanitation Family Planning A p p l i c a t i o n f o r funds O v e r a l l Programme  22 13 25 5 9 16  34 29 46 3 14 27  T o t a l No. farmers T o t a l a l l respondents  95 124  48 64  No Yes Yes No No  Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes  Amenities  Three  Four  Five  Total  28 16 41 4 12 22  37 22 12 4 16 26  33 19 22 3 13 23  33 19 27 4 13 23  89 110  96 110  117 132  445 540  No No No No No  Yes Yes No Yes No  No Yes Yes Yes Yes  Present  Access Road School Panchayat House Lanes & B r i d g e s Drainage/gutters  In t h i s summary t a b l e a l l p r o j e c t s a r e g i v e n equal w e i g h t i n g . The p e r c e n t f i g u r e s i n d i c a t e the averaged p e r c e n t o f respondents who adopted a l l p r o j e c t s i n c l u d e d i n d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the programmes. For f u l l - l e n g t h t a b l e i n which each p r o j e c t i s l i s t e d s e p a r a t e l y , see appendix Table X L I I . T h i s t a b l e i s d e r i v e d from responses t o q u e s t i o n s 14-35, 78, and 89-92 i n the q u e s t i o n n a i r e g i v e n i n the appendix.  108  There i s no marked v a r i a t i o n i n i n n o v a t i v e p o t e n t i a l between the  five villages.  The second v i l l a g e appears g e n e r a l l y the more  p r o g r e s s i v e and the f i r s t v i l l a g e the l e a s t , but d i f f e r e n c e s are not g r e a t and are not c o n s i s t e n t a c r o s s a l l a s p e c t s o f the programmes. P r o v i s i o n o f p u b l i c a m e n i t i e s does v a r y c o n s i d e r a b l y between v i l l a g e s . T h i s r e f l e c t s p a r t l y the h i g h e r p r o p o r t i o n o f wealthy landowners, d i f f e r e n c e s i n a v a i l a b i l i t y o f funds and m a t e r i a l s by v i l l a g e . i s s u e s w i l l be examined f u r t h e r i n c h a p t e r Seven i n r e l a t i o n of  These  to p a t t e r n s  a l l o c a t i o n and c o n t r o l over such funds as are made a v a i l a b l e t o  particular  villages.  V a r i a t i o n i n p a t t e r n s o f response between d i f f e r e n t of  and  the communities  i s o f c e n t r a l concern i n the f o l l o w i n g  sectors  analysis.  T h i s i s examined i n r e l a t i o n t o f i v e main c a t e g o r i e s o f respondents; the  Proudhans - o r v i l l a g e l e a d e r s - and t h e i r c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s , promi-  nent r i v a l s and t h e i r s u p p o r t e r s , and n e u t r a l respondents o f h i g h e r , middle o r lower c a s t e rank.  Table IX summarizes the averaged r a t e o f  a d o p t i o n o f p r o j e c t s f o r d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the programmes, by f a c t i o n and c a s t e d i v i s i o n s .  The f u l l - l e n g t h t a b l e , which  lists  frequency o f a d o p t i o n o f each s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t , i s g i v e n i n t h i s appendix. in  The summary t a b l e i n d i c a t e s marked and c o n s i s t e n t  averaged a d o p t i o n r a t e s a c r o s s these d i f f e r e n t s e c t o r s .  a s p e c t o f the programmes the Proudhans' average frequency o f a d o p t i o n . c a s t e s , c o m p r i s i n g those who division.  differences For each  s u p p o r t e r s have the h i g h e s t  Second t o them are the n e u t r a l h i g h e r  are not a s s o c i a t e d w i t h any major f a c t i o n  R i v a l f a c t i o n s u p p o r t e r s , a l t h o u g h p r e d o m i n e n t l y wealthy  and h i g h e r c a s t e respondents, evidence a g e n e r a l l y lower frequency o f  109  Table IX. Summary of Mean Adoption Rates for a l l Projects by Faction & Caste  Faction & Caste P.  R.  H.  M.  L.  Total  %  %  %  %  %  %  Agriculture Nutrition Sanitation Family Planning Application for Funds Overall Programme  52 48 50 11 24 41  34 21 30 5 17 25  39 23 34 6 17 28  26 18 29 2 10 19  24 11 20 3 11 17  33 19 27 4 13 22  Total No. Farmers Total No. Respondents  48 51  49 56  43 45  118 144  187 243  445 540  Aspect of Programme  Key:  P R H M L  = = = = =  Proudhans supporters Rival faction supporters Neutral Higher Castes Neutral Middle Castes Neutral Lower Castes 1  In this summary table a l l projects are given equal weighting. The percent figures indicate the averaged percent of.respondents who adopted a l l projects included i n d i f f e r e n t aspects of the programmes. For f u l l - l e n g t h table i n which frequency of adoption for each project i s l i s t e d separately, see appendix, Table XLIII. This table i s derived from responses to questions 14-535, 78, and 89-92 in the questionnaire given i n the appendix.  110  a d o p t i o n than e i t h e r o f these s e c t o r s . lower c a s t e s have the lowest averaged In  Middle c a s t e s and f i n a l l y the frequency o f a d o p t i o n .  summary, a t h e o r y o f c h o i c e b e h a v i o u r i n t h i s c o n t e x t must  be a b l e t o e x p l a i n both the low o v e r a l l response, and the c o n s i s t e n t differential  i n response r a t e s between s e c t o r s o f the communities.  The f o l l o w i n g t h r e e c h a p t e r s examine the s i g n i f i c a n c e o f hypotheses d e r i v e d from the t h e o r y proposed above as determinants o f d i f f e r e n t i a l c h o i c e parameters  w i t h r e s p e c t to the programmes.  CHAPTER FIVE  INFORMATION AND  The  a l t e r n a t i v e s known to a chooser, and  i n g them, comprise the f i r s t The  CHOICE  information  c r i t i c a l parameters o f any  concern-  choice  situation.  a l t e r n a t i v e s c o n s i d e r e d by a chooser are n e c e s s a r i l y l i m i t e d  previous  experience  and new  is particularly c r i t i c a l  information a v a i l a b l e .  L i m i t e d knowledge  i n the c o n t e x t o f i n n o v a t i o n s which i n v o l v e  choices outside of regular a c t i v i t i e s .  I t i s i n such c o n t e x t s  the d i s c r e p a n c i e s between p o t e n t i a l and known a l t e r n a t i v e s are t o be  by  that likely  greatest. In the theory o f c h o i c e behaviour proposed, here the  concern i s w i t h  s o c i a l processes  first  which i n f l u e n c e the scope of a l t e r n a -  t i v e s l i k e l y t o e n t e r the f i e l d of c h o i c e , and the range o f r e l e v a n t i n f o r m a t i o n made a v a i l a b l e t o persons d i f f e r e n t i a l l y s i t u a t e d w i t h i n a g i v e n community.  T h i s a n a l y s i s focuses on primary sources  r e l e v a n t i n f o r m a t i o n , and the means of communication between sources  and  those  concerned w i t h such c h o i c e s .  Specific  to them, and  the amount and content  of information  these  questions  r a i s e d concern l o c i of c o n t r o l over means o f communication, access  of  differential  disseminated  throughout a community. C o n t r o l over i n f o r m a t i o n t r a n s m i s s i o n c o n s t i t u t e s a p o t e n t i a l b a s i s f o r power i n a community.  Power i s d e f i n e d here as  "the  t o e x e r t i n f l u e n c e over the c h o i c e s o f a c t i o n of o t h e r s " .  The  o f any one  informant  or i n t e r m e d i a r y  111  t o i n f l u e n c e the  ability capacity .  information  112  received by others depends on the range of alternative means for communication of relevant information.  The more r e s t r i c t e d these  are the greater one informant's influence w i l l be over the choices of others.  This i n turn i s l i k e l y to foster vested interests i n re-  s t r i c t i n g independent access to means of communication i n order to r e t a i n and strengthen personal influence. The general assumption of the theory concerning information flow i s that the a f f i l i a t i o n of those who  control the flow of i n f o r -  mation, either as primary sources or as intermediaries, w i l l determine the amount, content, and bias i n information which they  disseminate.  Three s p e c i f i c hypotheses which are derived from t h i s assumption are that: 1) Where p a r t i c u l a r individuals control access to means of communication within a community, they w i l l encourage the access of close associates and status equals over other sectors of the community. 2) Where p a r t i c u l a r individuals function as intermediaries in the d i f f u s i o n of information within a community, they w i l l disseminate information primarily to close associates and status equals over other sectors of the community. 3) Intermediaries i n the d i f f u s i o n of information w i l l encourage the transmission of any information seen as supporting the objectives of close associates, and w i l l obstruct the transmission of information seen as opposed to such objectives. These hypotheses assume that relations between close associates and  113  s t a t u s equals and  are more l i k e l y t o be c h a r a c t e r i z e d by ease of  interaction  c o i n c i d e n c e o f i n t e r e s t s than are r e l a t i o n s between s o c i a l l y more  d i s t a n t persons.  Such f a c t o r s are l i k e l y to promote the s h a r i n g o f  information.  converse i s a l s o assumed.  The  r e l a t i o n s between persons w i l l d i s c o u r a g e In t h i s study  R i v a l r y and  the s h a r i n g o f  i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with recognized  i s taken as a primary measure o f c l o s e a s s o c i a t i o n . two  c l o s e l y r e l a t e d v a r i a b l e s o f c a s t e and  i s accorded  Status  landholding.  leaders  comprises  The  high  their  signifi-  In the f o l l o w i n g a n a l y s i s p r i o r i t y  to c a s t e rank i n d e t e r m i n i n g  l a n d h o l d i n g as a secondary  information.  faction  c o r r e l a t i o n between them makes i t d i f f i c u l t t o separate cance as a t t r i b u t e s o f s t a t u s .  hostile  s i m i l a r i t y of s t a t u s with  criterion.  Source and Means o f Communication T h i s study  i s concerned w i t h the t r a n s m i s s i o n of  information  on development programmes t o a l l households w i t h i n the s e l e c t e d v i l l a g e communities.  An important  d i s t i n c t i o n i s made between ' f i r s t - h a n d  communication' which comes d i r e c t l y from p r i m a r y sources whether t h i s i s through p e r s o n a l  of  c o n t a c t or mass media, and  information, 'second-  hand' or i n d i r e c t d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n i n which o t h e r people a c t as i n t e r m e d i a r i e s between a r e c i p i e n t and The p r i m a r y sources  the main  o f i n f o r m a t i o n on a l l development p r o j e c t s  a t v i l l a g e l e v e l are the Block o f f i c i a l s who for their i n i t i a t i o n  informant.  i n the v i l l a g e s .  are d i r e c t l y  To a l e s s e r e x t e n t the  o f a g r i c u l t u r a l r e s e a r c h s t a t i o n s , seed merchants, and government o f f i c i a l s who  t o u r the v i l l a g e s f u n c t i o n as  but o n l y on an i n f r e q u e n t b a s i s .  responsible staff  occasional informants  114  Important means of first-hand communication from Block o f f i c i a l s to v i l l a g e r s include personal contact, p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n v i l l a g e clubs and council meetings where projects are presented and discussed, and some use of mass media, including radio programmes, d i s t r i b u t i o n of l i t e r a t u r e and occasional f i l m shows i n the v i l l a g e s . These various means of communication are described b r i e f l y below. Personal contacts with o f f i c i a l s are especially valuable i n o f f e r i n g the opportunity  f o r detailed discussion and questioning.  Village-level-workers are assigned to work i n s i x to eight v i l l a g e s depending on t h e i r size, f o r an average period of two years.  They are  expected to v i s i t each v i l l a g e regularly to sponsor new projects, lead clubs and discussions, and generally to be available to a l l v i l l a g e r s for advice and questioning.  Senior Block o f f i c i a l s less  frequently v i s i t the v i l l a g e s but they can be approached and consulted at the Block headquarters. V i l l a g e clubs organized by Block o f f i c i a l s include youth clubs, radio clubs, and s p e c i a l clubs for women.  The youth clubs provide a  forum for discussion of new farming techniques,  p r a c t i c a l hints, and  some special programmes i n applied n u t r i t i o n , family planning, and poultry farming.  Radio clubs are organized around regular programmes  on agriculture which are broadcast each weekday evening.  A transistor  radio i s supplied free to the group leader i n each v i l l a g e .  He i s also  given pre-addressed letter-forms, on which to send any questions to the programme organizers f o r discussion i n future broadcasts. women- s clubs have been organized 1  d i r e c t i o n of female Block workers.  Separate  i n selected v i l l a g e s under the They are concerned primarily with  115  applied nutrition baby c a r e ,  training,  also  of  forum f o r  or v i l l a g e  and a i d  Mass m e d i a p l a y  of  all  literature,  Indices  appropriate  R e l e v a n t media i s  of  is  relevant  with Proudhans, the  and e n t e r t a i n i n g this  other  arrangements  literature They a r e  to  new p r o j e c t s through  to  flow  the  these  and  Blocks.  inter-  proportion  radio broadcasts,  information  on  development  do n o t p r o v i d e on t h e s e  t h a t p r e p a r e d and  retain  often  in  villagers  for  but  control over  in practice  headmen.  a village;  they  an  projects.  distributed  they  are  their to  meeting p l a c e ,  distribution  a l s o the  first  to  to be  the  set  up i n  their  invitations  space  and  village, to  other  government r a d i o and o f  c l u b members a n d v i l l a g e r s informed of  meeting  arranging o f f i c e informing  first  The P r o u d h a n s a l s o make  and i n i t i a t e  given custody of  closely  u s u a l l y the  responsible for  own h o u s e , a n d f o r  such m e e t i n g s .  first-hand  work v e r y  Proudhans are  any p r o p o s e d c l u b s t o be  They a r e for  primary  v i s i t i n g Block personnel, for  a regular  villagers.  in  an  Intermediaries  village  t o be a p p r o a c h e d w i t h i n  arrange  general  Blocks.  communication w i t h v i l l a g e r s  inviting  for  information  confined largely  Block o f f i c i a l s  them -  provide  Only a t i n y  mass m e d i a e x p o s u r e t h u s  Communication C o n t r o l and  for  supportive role  communication.  measure o f p o t e n t i a l  through the  available  a v a i l a b l e mass media c o n t e n t  and c i n e m a ,  programmes.  facilities  a largely  a n d s o c i a l means o f  generally  council meetings,  communication and d i s c u s s i o n o f  various grants  personal  and p r e s e r v a t i o n ,  and h o u s e h o l d h i n t s .  The P a n c h a y a t , additional  food preparation  impending f i l m  at  large.  shows a n d  116  are expected t o c l e a r a space  i n the v i l l a g e where they can be h e l d .  In a d d i t i o n , Proudhans have s o l e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r c a l l i n g a l l p u b l i c meetings o f the panchayats and i n f o r m i n g r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s and the g e n e r a l p u b l i c o f when and where these meetings a r e t o be h e l d . Proudhans a r e thus a b l e t o e x e r c i s e a s i g n i f i c a n t degree o f c o n t r o l over access t o a l l means o f f i r s t - h a n d communication between v i l l a g e r s and Block  informants. The c e n t r a l i s s u e s examined below a r e p a t t e r n s o f access t o  such communication, f u r t h e r d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n , and the content of information transmitted.  Access  t o F i r s t - H a n d Communication The  first  concern i s w i t h s o c i a l determinants  access t o f i r s t - h a n d communication w i t h primary The  t h e o r e t i c a l assumption  of d i f f e r e n t i a l  sources o f i n f o r m a t i o n .  examined below i s t h a t the l o c u s o f c o n t r o l  over means o f communication w i t h i n t h e s o c i a l h i e r a r c h y o f the communi t i e s c o n s t i t u t e s a c r i t i c a l determinant  o f d i f f e r e n t i a l access, i n  that: 1) Where p a r t i c u l a r i n d i v i d u a l s c o n t r o l access t o means o f communication, they w i l l encourage the a c c e s s o f c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s and s t a t u s equals over o t h e r s e c t o r s o f the community. In t h i s case, Block p e r s o n n e l a r e p r i m a r y  informants w i t h  village  Proudhans e x e r c i s i n g s i g n i f i c a n t c o n t r o l o v e r means o f communication between them and v i l l a g e r s .  I t i s predicted, f i r s t l y ,  t h a t those who  share s i m i l a r c a s t e and c l a s s p o s i t i o n t o B l o c k o f f i c i a l s w i l l r e c e i v e p r e f e r e n t i a l a t t e n t i o n from them.  Secondly,  close faction associates,  117  and o t h e r s erential This  of  similar  access  is  the  to  c a s t e rank  all  as the  means o f  converse of  the  receive  pref-  communication o r g a n i z e d through  them.  prediction  Proudhans, w i l l  implied  f o c u s i n g e n e r g i e s on l o c a l  leaders  promote  subordinates.  the  vertical  involvement of  association, while  association  Block o f f i c i a l s Access  on a c c e s s  i s both r e s t r i c t e d  stratum.  proportionately  Without higher  communities.  iated  quency o f  access.  c a s t e s and l a s t l y  access  village  lower the  rates  other  access  stricted greater in  of  other  the  often  the  While  strata.  lowest  across  communication  supports the  above h y p o t h e s i s .  For each channel  from the  are  disparity  but  excluded to  lowest  middle  those  never  lower  as  reof  interaction  a greater over  extent members  proportional  any f i r s t - h a n d  of  fre-  appears t o be social  the  assoc-  consistently  residents,  Low c a s t e s h a v e t h e  not  s u p p o r t e r s and t h e n  in restricting  to  of  enjoy  second h i g h e s t  H i g h c a s t e members o f  Status  to  sectors  r e s p o n d e n t s who a r e  nonetheless are p r e f e r r e d  absolute access  elites  Proudhans's supporters  faction  rivals  between  respondents d e c l i n e s p r o g r e s s i v e l y  caste  rivalry  caste equals* they  lower  strata.  than  incumbent Proudhans have higher  will  rather  selective.  caste  castes.  they  horizontal  each channel than other  rival  of  hypothesis implies  f a c t i o n s have the  low c a s t e s .  s i g n i f i c a n c e than  everyday a f f a i r s .  than of  as t h a t  than  to  strategy  T h i s s t r a t e g y assumes  s o c i a l status  higher  f a c t i o n s which r i v a l of  in  of  the  assumption that  means o f  strongly  access  Third are the  all  e x c e p t i o n the  Neutral  with p a r t i c u l a r  within,  and h i g h l y  increasing disparities  lowest  the  to  and v i l l a g e r s  communication p r o p o r t i o n a l with  the p r e s e n t  occurring primarily  The d a t a  on t h e  in  and  communication,  118  a l t h o u g h they comprise  o n e - h a l f o f the t o t a l r e s i d e n t s .  The  different  media p o t e n t i a l l y a v a i l a b l e appear t o be m u t u a l l y r e i n f o r c i n g .  Very  r a r e l y does access t o one medium o f communication compensate f o r r e s t r i c t e d access to o t h e r s .  The p r o c e s s e s which s t r u c t u r e  this  d i f f e r e n t i a l access t o s p e c i f i c means o f communication are examined i n more depth below.  Contact With O f f i c i a l s The e x t e n t o f d i r e c t c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s i s measured through each respondent's has met  assessment o f the frequency w i t h which he  and t a l k e d w i t h them.  'Frequent c o n t a c t ' i s d e f i n e d as h a v i n g  t a l k e d w i t h them on the average  "once every month or so".  'Occasional  contact' indicates  "only once o r twice d u r i n g the p r e v i o u s y e a r " or  two  B l o c k o f f i c i a l s e x e r c i s e d i r e c t c o n t r o l over these  crop seasons.  exchanges w i t h v i l l a g e r s .  They do not r e q u i r e the c o o p e r a t i o n o f  p a r t i c u l a r v i l l a g e l e a d e r s t o arrange such meetings although they seek t h i s .  may  They have b o t h the o p p o r t u n i t y and a l s o the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y  to v i s i t a l l areas o f the v i l l a g e s a s s i g n e d t o them.  Table X i n d i c a t e s  p r o p o r t i o n a l c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s enjoyed by respondents d i f f e r e n t s e c t o r s o f the v i l l a g e communities.  from  The r e s t r i c t e d  nature  o f such i n t e r a c t i o n i s i n d i c a t e d by the f a c t t h a t t w o - t h i r d s o f a l l respondents  s a i d they had never t a l k e d d i r e c t l y w i t h o f f i c i a l s .  h a l f o f them d i d not know who was  these people were.  Almost  For o t h e r s r e c o g n i t i o n  o f t e n c o n f i n e d t o s e e i n g them i n the market o r t a k i n g t e a on the  Proudhan's f r o n t p o r c h .  Only f i f t e e n p e r c e n t o f a l l respondents  claimed frequent contact with o f f i c i a l s .  These comprise  respondents  mainly from among the Proudhans' s u p p o r t e r s and n e u t r a l h i g h e r c a s t e s .  119  Table X.  F i r s t - h a n d Communication With B l o c k , O f f i c i a l s By F a c t i o n and Caste  F a c t i o n and Caste Talks with  Officials  Pr. Q, "O  Riv. %  High %  Mid. %  Low. %  Total No. %  Frequent Occasional None  59 23 18  14 30 56  38 22 40  11 19 70  5 12 83  83 97 360  T o t a l Respondents  51  56  45  144  244  540  Key:  Frequent = once a month o r so O c c a s i o n a l = once o r t w i c e d u r i n g p r e v i o u s year None = l e s s than t h i s .  15 18 67  120  Other sectors of the communities were largely ignored.  Low caste  respondents, i n p a r t i c u l a r , often claimed that o f f i c i a l s had never entered their street, never stopped to talk with them, and did not v i s i t their f i e l d s .  These same respondents were often reluctant to  v i s i t the Block o f f i c e s or headquarters for fear of rebuff.  The few  low caste respondents who had gone were made to f e e l unwelcome.  They  recounted s t o r i e s of being pointedly ignored by petty clerks and made to squat i n the corridor a l l day only to be t o l d to 'come back tomorrow'.  Such experiences do l i t t l e to encourage them or their  neighbours to seek out Block o f f i c i a l s for advice or information. These data indicate that Block o f f i c i a l s have been highly selective i n the contacts they have sought with v i l l a g e r s .  This bias  in favour of v i l l a g e e l i t e s i s consistent with the hypothesis that informants w i l l prefer to associate with those of similar status to themselves.  I t i s the e l i t e s who tend to have most i n common with  o f f i c i a l s i n terms of caste rank, wealth, and generally higher education, than other v i l l a g e r s .  V i l l a g e Clubs Three important v i l l a g e clubs were organized by Block o f f i c i a l s in the v i l l a g e s studied; a youth club, a radio club, and a club for women.  Membership of these three clubs i s shown i n Table XI.  to them i s measured i n terms of four d i s t i n c t categories.  Access  The f i r s t  includes respondents who claimed to have actually attended the clubs. The second includes respondents who claimed that they were invited but d i d not attend.  The t h i r d category indicates the respondents who  know that the clubs were held i n the v i l l a g e but said that they had never  121  Table XI.  D i r e c t Access t o V i l l a g e O r g a n i z a t i o n s By F a c t i o n and Caste  F a c t i o n and Caste Organization  Pr. %  Riv. o , "o  a) Youth Club Attend Invited Not asked Club unknown  76 4 14 6  b) Radio Club Attend Invited Not asked Club unknown c) Women's Club Attend Invited Not asked Club unknown  High %  Mid. %  34 6 31 29  53 9 27 11  21 6 31 42  19 2 20 59  160 24 131 225  30 4 24 42  51 4 18 27  14 3 23 60  20 15 25 40  12 3 23 62  5 3 14 78  72 22 100 346  13 4 19 64  76 8 10 6  16 5 16 63  30 13 24 33  17 10 20 53  5 9 14 72  98 49 89 304  18 9 16 57  A l l meetings Some m e t t i n g s None  46 34 20  9 31 60  22 38 40  15 25 60  10 32 58  85 166 289  16 31 53  T o t a l Respondents  51  56  45  144  244  540  Low %  Total No. %  Attendance o f Panchayat  122  been i n v i t e d t o a t t e n d .  The l a s t c a t e g o r y  know about t h e c l u b a t a l l .  i n c l u d e s those who d i d n o t  T h i s d i v i s i o n p e r m i t s a very  important  d i s t i n c t i o n t o be drawn i n p a t t e r n s o f access t o t h e c l u b s .  Individuals  enjoy  invited.  free  choice t o a t t e n d a c l u b o n l y when they have been  The p r o p o r t i o n who were i n v i t e d b u t d e c i d e d n o t t o a t t e n d thus the o n l y c l e a r  indication  of disinterest,  Others who were n o t i n v i t e d  and e s p e c i a l l y  or reluctance to attend. those respondents who had  not heard about t h e c l u b s a r e e f f e c t i v e l y excluded irrespective  o f t h e i r personal i n c l i n a t i o n s .  d i s t i n c t i o n w i l l be i n d i c a t e d  provides  from  participation,  The importance o f t h i s  f u r t h e r below.  Block o f f i c i a l s who sponsor the c l u b s have c o n s i d e r a b l e i n f l u e n c e over t h e i r o r g a n i z a t i o n and membership.  Next t o them the  v i l l a g e Proudhans e x e r t a s i g n i f i c a n t degree o f c o n t r o l  through a r r a n g -  i n g c l u b meetings, i n f o r m i n g o t h e r v i l l a g e r s about the c l u b s , and extending  invitations  t o them t o a t t e n d .  T h i s p r o c e s s was i l l u s t r a t e d  by the i n a u g u r a t i o n o f a women's c l u b which I attended.  The B l o c k  o f f i c i a l who was t o be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t h e c l u b went d i r e c t l y t o the Proudhan's house, where she was expected.  While she was e n t e r t a i n e d  on the f r o n t porch o f h i s house, t h e Proudhan sent h i s sons t o round up women f o r a meeting. i n the y a r d i n f r o n t  A s h o r t time l a t e r t h e meeting took p l a c e  o f h i s house.  I t was dominated by h i g h  women drawn from homes i n t h e immediate v i c i n i t y . lower-caste  s e r v a n t s s q u a t t e d a t t h e back.  was nominated, without A demonstration  A few o f t h e i r  The Proudhan's daughter  o b j e c t i o n , t o be c l u b l e a d e r and keep r e c o r d s .  was scheduled  meeting was disbanded.  caste  f o r t h e f o l l o w i n g week and then t h e  A t a rough e s t i m a t e ,  l e s s than a dozen  separate  123  f a m i l i e s were r e p r e s e n t e d among the audience.  The v a s t m a j o r i t y o f  v i l l a g e women were unaware t h a t i t was happening, o r t h a t a c l u b was b e i n g o r g a n i z e d . will  I f they do f i n d o u t i t i s u n l i k e l y t h a t t h i s  take the form o f a d i r e c t i n v i t a t i o n t o a t t e n d .  l a r l y u n l i k e l y i f they a r e o f markedly lower group o f women.  s t a t u s than t h i s  initial  I n a l l p r o b a b i l i t y , t h e many o t h e r c l u b s i n o t h e r  v i l l a g e s were i n a u g u r a t e d of  It i s particu-  i n a s i m i l a r manner.  i n v i t a t i o n and attendance  c l u b s i n each o f t h e f i v e  The r e s u l t i n g p a t t e r n  i s r e s t r i c t e d and s e l e c t i v e f o r a l l the  villages.  Youth Club The men's youth all  clubs i n operation.  i n v i t e d t o attend.  c l u b appears t o be the l e a s t r e s t r i c t i v e o f O n e - t h i r d o f v i l l a g e f a m i l i e s were a c t u a l l y  But i t i s s t i l l t h e Proudhans' s u p p o r t e r s and  n e u t r a l h i g h e r c a s t e respondents  who dominate the membership, with a  much s m a l l e r p r o p o r t i o n o f lower  c a s t e youths.  The c l u b i n the f o u r t h  v i l l a g e appears a p a r t i a l e x c e p t i o n i n b e i n g dominated by r i v a l supporters  from an a d j a c e n t hamlet.  faction  However, q u a r r e l l i n g broke o u t  between them and the incumbent Proudhan over l e a d e r s h i p o f the c l u b , and  i t was c l o s e d down some two y e a r s p r i o r t o t h e study.  Radio Club Membership o f t h e r a d i o c l u b i s l i m i t e d t o t h i r t e e n of  a l l families.  percent  One government r a d i o was s u p p l i e d f r e e t o each  v i l l a g e Proudhan, and two i n the case o f the l a r g e s t f i f t h  village.  These r a d i o s have come t o be regarded as the p r i v a t e p r o p e r t y o f the Proudhans.  Only t h e i r immediate f r i e n d s and p o s s i b l y a few household  124  servants  appear t o have ever been i n v i t e d t o l i s t e n t o them.  r a d i o s a l s o i n v a r i a b l y remain i n t h e Proudhans  1  The  homes, so t h a t  only  those v i l l a g e r s who have easy access t o t h e i r homes have a c c e s s t o the 'public' radios. r a d i o was g i v e n  A p a r t i a l exception t o t h e Sarpanch.  i s t h e f i r s t v i l l a g e where t h e  He had taken over as a c t i n g v i l l a g e  l e a d e r d u r i n g the p r o l o n g e d absence o f t h e incumbent Proudhan. p a t t e r n o f use i s t h e same. started at a l l . since  The  In t h e f o u r t h v i l l a g e no r a d i o c l u b was  The Proudhan claimed  t h a t i t was 'unnecessary'  'everybody i n t h e v i l l a g e has a r a d i o anyway'.  Everybody, i n  t h i s case, i n c l u d e d o n l y h i s c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s , e x c l u d i n g  eighty per-  cent o f v i l l a g e f a m i l i e s who do n o t p o s s e s s a r a d i o .  Women's Clubs The  women's c l u b s r e f l e c t s i m i l a r l y r e s t r i c t e d  t o t a l l i n g l e s s than o n e - f i f t h o f a l l f a m i l i e s .  attendance,  They a r e dominated i n  the same way by members o f t h e Proudhans' f a c t i o n s and o t h e r castes. The  higher  A g a i n , i n the f o u r t h v i l l a g e t h e c l u b was never i n a u g u r a t e d .  male v i l l a g e l e a d e r e v e n t u a l l y e x p l a i n e d  i a t e s disapproved o f higher male^escorts. V-  t h a t he and h i s assoc-  c a s t e women a p p e a r i n g i n p u b l i c without  Hence, they had r e j e c t e d t h e B l o c k ' s o f f e r t o i n v i t e  women from t h e i r v i l l a g e t o a t t e n d n u t r i t i o n t r a i n i n g c l a s s e s o r a l o c a l club. had  Almost no-one e l s e i n the v i l l a g e knew t h a t the s u g g e s t i o n  ever been made. In summary, a l l t h e v i l l a g e c l u b s sponsored by t h e B l o c k s  have i n p r a c t i c e r e v e r t e d t o t h e form o f p r i v a t e c l u b s . dominated by a s e l e c t few o f h i g h  caste  They a r e  f a m i l i e s who a r e c l o s e  125  a s s o c i a t e s o f the Proudhans who o r g a n i z e d  the clubs.  p a r t , they o n l y meet i n h i s p r i v a t e house. largely  F o r t h e most  Other v i l l a g e r s  u n i n v i t e d , and unwelcome should they t u r n up.  Any c l u b s not  wanted by the v i l l a g e l e a d e r s were simply n o t o r g a n i z e d . case where a r i v a l f a c t i o n  remain  dominated t h e new youth c l u b  In t h e one quarrelling  between them and t h e Proudhan f o r c e d i t s c l o s u r e . The p r o p o r t i o n o f v i l l a g e r s who were i n v i t e d b u t chose n o t to a t t e n d the c l u b s i s v e r y s m a l l .  I t accounts f o r o n l y f o u r  percent  o f respondents f o r t h e youth c l u b s and r a d i o c l u b s , and an e s t i m a t e d nine p e r c e n t  f o r t h e women's c l u b s .  In t h i s l a t t e r case,  i t was  u s u a l l y the male heads o f households who spoke f o r t h e women i n t h e i r families.  The e x t e n t t o which non-attendance r e f l e c t s t h e p e r s o n a l  c h o i c e o f the women, as a g a i n s t r e s t r i c t i o n s p l a c e d on them, i s not clear. With r e s p e c t t o a l l t h e c l u b s t h e m a j o r i t y o f respondents appeared t o be i g n o r a n t o f t h e i r e x i s t e n c e .  A further large  t i o n knew o f them b u t had never been d i r e c t l y i n v i t e d These two c a t e g o r i e s t o g e t h e r respondents.  Rival  over-represented  faction  average s e v e n t y - f o u r  supporters  w i t h i n t h i s number.  the o p t i o n t o a t t e n d t h e d i f f e r e n t They a r e e f f e c t i v e l y excluded personal and  inclinations.  propor-  t o attend.  percent  of a l l  and lower c a s t e s a r e h e a v i l y For t h i s majority o f v i l l a g e r s  c l u b s has never been open t o them.  from p a r t i c i p a t i o n , i r r e s p e c t i v e  While such a h i g h p r o p o r t i o n remain  of their ignorant  u n i n v i t e d t h e low average attendance o f c l u b s cannot be e x p l a i n e d  i n terms o f l i m i t e d  interest.  The causes must be sought f i r s t i n  inadequate communication, and p o l i c i e s which promote t h e s e l e c t i v e  126  exclusion of the majority of the potential v i l l a g e c l i e n t e l e . Panchayat Meetings Panchayat meetings are public assemblies which are supposed to be held monthly, and to which a l l v i l l a g e r s have the r i g h t to attend.  I t comprises the smallest l o c a l unit of government at  village level.  As such, i t i s stressed i n government p o l i c i e s as a  c r i t i c a l forum f o r the introduction of the development programmes. Data on attendance i s shown i n the preceding Table XI.  I t i s divided  into those who claimed to attend a l l meetings, and those who have never attended.  The middle category includes those who attended only  some of the meetings which they heard about. The Proudhans exercise sole control over the holding of panchayat meetings, and the extent of p r i o r n o t i f i c a t i o n throughout the  village.  O f f i c i a l l y , one public meeting of the panchayat should  be scheduled for each month.  In practice, they were rarely called  more than two or three times a year i n any of the f i v e v i l l a g e s . None had been held during the previous two years i n the fourth v i l l a g e . Prior n o t i f i c a t i o n of the few public meetings which were c a l l e d appeared to be limited.  In one instance respondents from a low caste  street learned that a meeting was about to be held that afternoon. When they arrived at the panchayat hall, i t was only to find that the meeting had been concluded several hours e a r l i e r i n the morning. This was long before they had been n o t i f i e d .  Comments by many middle  and low caste respondents, including their o f f i c i a l representatives within the councils, indicated that lack of p r i o r i n v i t a t i o n to meetings  127  i s a common e x p e r i e n c e .  In t h e i r view, they were c a l l e d t o meetings  o n l y when they were r e q u i r e d t o p r o v i d e f r e e l a b o u r f o r p r o j e c t s a l r e a d y approved by c o u n c i l l e a d e r s .  Any d e c i s i o n s c o n c e r n i n g the  s e l e c t i o n o f p r o j e c t s were u s u a l l y concluded p r i o r t o any such ' p u b l i c ' o r g e n e r a l meeting.  I t thus appears t h a t a l a r g e p r o p o r t i o n  o f v i l l a g e r s are e x c l u d e d from attendance o f panchayat meetings by v i r t u e o f not b e i n g informed o r i n v i t e d .  While t h i s remains t r u e ,  the p o s s i b l e d i s i n t e r e s t o f v i l l a g e r s i n panchayat a f f a i r s cannot be d i r e c t l y i n f e r r e d from low r a t e s o f a t t e n d a n c e . In t o t a l , o n l y s i x t e e n p e r c e n t o f a l l respondents c l a i m e d to a t t e n d a l l meetings which they knew about. had never a t t e n d e d any meeting.  Over h a l f the respondents  Supporters of r i v a l f a c t i o n s w i t h i n  the v i l l a g e s e v i d e n c e d a c o n s p i c u o u s l y low f r e q u e n c y o f attendance. The v i l l a g e c o u n c i l s do not appear t o p r o v i d e a forum f o r debate between f a c t i o n s .  They are dominated p r i m a r i l y by the Proudhans'  faction supporters.  own  T h i s combination o f i n f r e q u e n t meetings and  r e s t r i c t e d attendance suggests t h a t panchayats have l i m i t e d  utility  as a forum f o r s p r e a d i n g i n f o r m a t i o n on development programmes among v i l l a g e r s at large.  L i k e the v i l l a g e c l u b s d e s c r i b e d above, they  appear t o f u n c t i o n m a i n l y as p r i v a t e g a t h e r i n g s f o r the Proudhan new  and h i s s u p p o r t e r s .  incumbent  They become p u b l i c forums o n l y when a  e l e c t i o n i s i n the o f f i n g .  Mass Media Mass media are w i d e l y h e r a l d e d i n the l i t e r a t u r e on communic a t i o n and development  as the g r e a t s o c i a l l e v e l l e r , open t o a l l  i r r e s p e c t i v e o f rank.  However, i n p r a c t i c e t h i s r e q u i r e s a c c e s s t o  128  mass media f a c i l i t i e s ; - t o a r a d i o , t o l i t e r a t u r e , or t o a cinema, and a l s o t o r e l e v a n t c o n t e n t. this c r i t i c a l facilities  Too many s t u d i e s o f mass media i g n o r e  f a c t o r o f r e l e v a n t content when they t r e a t access t o  as i n d i c e s o f exposure  to information.  Popular music  programmes, r e l i g i o u s s t o r i e s ^ and Bombay movies, a l l c o n s t i t u t e exposure  t o mass media but they have minimal  n a t i n g i n f o r m a t i o n on development programmes.  relevance f o r dissemiRelevant m a t e r i a l s  are c o n f i n e d l a r g e l y t o t h a t p r e p a r e d by the Block o r d i s t r i b u t e d through them.  Access t o these m a t e r i a l s i s c l o s e l y l i n k e d w i t h  access to B l o c k  officials.  Radio programmes on a g r i c u l t u r a l e x t e n s i o n are b r o a d c a s t each weekday evening f o r q u a r t e r o f an hour.  Other  irregularly  s c h e d u l e d b r o a d c a s t s c a r r y i n f o r m a t i o n on f a m i l y p l a n n i n g , and p r a c t i c e s i n n u t r i t i o n and s a n i t a t i o n .  V i l l a g e r s who  new  themselves  possess a r a d i o have p o t e n t i a l l y d i r e c t a c c e s s t o a l l such programmes. The p a t t e r n o f ownership, was  shown i n Table X I I , i n d i c a t e s t h a t  ownership  confined to a m i n o r i t y of f i f t e e n percent of a l l v i l l a g e  families.  T h i s m i n o r i t y i n c l u d e s t w o - t h i r d s o f the Proudhans' s u p p o r t e r s , and o n e - t h i r d of n e u t r a l higher c a s t e s .  These respondents  comprise  m o s t l y the w e a l t h i e r and h i g h e r c a s t e members o f the v i l l a g e ties.  Only a t i n y m i n o r i t y o f low c a s t e f a m i l i e s possess Access t o r a d i o s i s extended  those who  own  a set.  communi-  radios.  t o f r i e n d s and neighbours  T h i r t y - n i n e p e r c e n t o f respondents  t h a t they d i d l i s t e n t o r a d i o s owned by o t h e r p e o p l e .  of  indicated  Such o p p o r t u n i t i e s  are n e c e s s a r i l y r e s t r i c t e d by the i n i t i a l b i a s i n d i s t r i b u t i o n o f r a d i o s w i t h i n the v i l l a g e s .  In t o t a l , f o r t y - s i x p e r c e n t of  respondents  129  Table XII.  D i r e c t Access t o Mass Media by F a c t i o n and Caste  F a c t i o n and Caste Type o f Medium  Pr. %  R i v . High % %  Mid. %  Low %  Total No. %  a) Access t o a Radio Owns a r a d i o Friend's radio No a c c e s s  61 35 4  14 56 30  29 53 18  13 31 56  4 38 58  83 211 246  15 39 46  b) Access t o Broadcasts on A g r i c u l t u r e F r e q u e n t l y - d e t a i l s known Sometimes - d e t a i l s known Sometimes - l i t t l e knowledge Broadcasts never heard  63 14 8 15  25 7 12 56  29 9 13 49  17 6 . 5 72  7 7 5 83  100 41 34 365  19 7 6 67  c) Access t o L i t e r a t u r e on A g r i c u l t u r e 2 b o o k l e t s - e a s i l y understood 1 b o o k l e t - e a s i l y understood 1 b o o k l e t - hard t o understand None - b u t can r e a d None - cannot r e a d  47 14 0 25 14  11 9 1 47 32  27 13 0 31 29  11 5 1 25 58  4 2 2 12 80  68 31 8 116 317  12 6 1 21 60  d) Access t o F i l m s from Block F i l m s on 3 t o p i c s F i l m s on 2 t o p i c s F i l m on 1 t o p i c No f i l m seen  46 21 25 8  41 18 20 21  45 15 20 20  20 28 29 23  20 22 33 25  143 121 154 122  27 22 29 22  T o t a l Respondents  51  56  45  144  244  540  130  claimed there was no radio to which they could l i s t e n within the village.  These include over one-half of middle and lower castes,  and almost one-third of r i v a l factions.  Among the leading Proudhans'  supporters this f a l l s to four percent or only two respondents.  Public  radios supplied through the Block, are intended to f a c i l i t a t e clubs where v i l l a g e r s could meet regularly to l i s t e n to radio broadcasts. As indicated above, these radios have come to be regarded as the private property of Proudhans.  Few v i l l a g e r s enjoy access to them  apart from close associates of the Proudhans. The further c r i t i c a l question concerns exposure to s p e c i f i c radio broadcasts which are relevant for the development programmes. Respondents were asked to estimate how regularly they listened to scheduled programmes on a g r i c u l t u r a l extension, and whether they could l i s t some of the major topics raised during the preceding few months. Data on access to these broadcasts are shown i n the preceding Table XII (b).  Only nineteen percent of a l l respondents claimed to l i s t e n  frequently, that i s about once a week or so, and could c i t e some topics raised.  A further thirteen percent heard such programmes  occasionally, but only one-half of these could l i s t any topics covered. The Proudhans' supporters are c l e a r l y advantaged i n t h i s respect. Three-quarters of these respondents knew d e t a i l s of programme content, most of them l i s t e n i n g on a regular basis. who  I t i s these  are most l i k e l y to own private radios and who  access to the clubs.  respondents  also have ready  Those v i l l a g e r s who only have access to radios which  belong to other people are p a r t i c u l a r l y disadvantaged.  They usually  cannot l i s t e n regularly and cannot select the programmes they wish to  131  hear.  Most admitted t h a t they l i s t e n e d almost s o l e l y t o p o p u l a r  music programmes.  They a r e u n l i k e l y t o hear any e d u c a t i o n a l b r o a d c a s t s  which a r e n o t c a r r i e d on t h e same band as p o p u l a r music.  Less than  o n e - s i x t h o f respondents who l i s t e n e d o n l y t o r a d i o s which belonged t o o t h e r people c o u l d c i t e any t o p i c s r a i s e d i n scheduled b r o a d c a s t s on a g r i c u l t u r e .  Only those v i l l a g e r s who p e r s o n a l l y own a r a d i o , o r  who are i n v i t e d as r e g u l a r members o f the r a d i o c l u b , appear t o b e n e f i t t o any s i g n i f i c a n t e x t e n t from e d u c a t i o n a l programmes. avenues f o r d i r e c t access remain  These two  the p r e r o g a t i v e l a r g e l y o f members o f  the upper stratum and the Proudhans' c l o s e s u p p o r t e r s .  In these v i l l a g e s ,  r a d i o c l e a r l y does n o t f u n c t i o n as a s o c i a l l e v e l l e r i n t r a n s m i s s i o n o f information. Access t o i n f o r m a t i o n through l i t e r a t u r e r e q u i r e s l i t e r a c y , o r a person who w i l l a c t as a r e a d e r f o r those who cannot r e a d . requires access t o r e l e v a n t m a t e r i a l s to read. requirements literate. castes.  i s restricted.  I t also  In the v i l l a g e s each o f  Only f o r t y p e r c e n t o f respondents  were  These a r e c o n c e n t r a t e d among v i l l a g e l e a d e r s and h i g h e r Among those who a r e l i t e r a t e i t i s a g a i n the Proudhans'  s u p p o r t e r s and n e u t r a l h i g h e r c a s t e s who enjoy favoured access t o relevant materials.  Most o f the r e l e v a n t l i t e r a t u r e i s made a v a i l a b l e  through the B l o c k s .  I t i s d i s t r i b u t e d through v i l l a g e c l u b s .  As w i t h  r a d i o s , t h i s l i t e r a t u r e has come t o be regarded as the p r i v a t e p r o p e r t y of club leaders.  I t i s d i s t r i b u t e d t o others only with r e l u c t a n c e .  One such l e a d e r p r o u d l y d i s p l a y e d h i s c o l l e c t i o n o f s e v e r a l months' s u p p l y o f both r a d i o and youth c l u b magazines. and many o f the pages had n o t been s e p a r a t e d .  They were  unblemished  These magazines had  132  c l e a r l y n o t been handled o r read by anyone.  The Table X I I (c) above  shows t h e p r o p o r t i o n o f v i l l a g e r s who had read any l i t e r a t u r e on agriculture. Proudhans and  These p r o p o r t i o n s d e c l i n e p r o g r e s s i v e l y from t h e favoured  supporters  1  and n e u t r a l h i g h e r c a s t e s , t o r i v a l  l a s t l y t o lower c a s t e s .  percent  Among the Proudhans' s u p p o r t e r s  had read a t l e a s t one p i e c e o f l i t e r a t u r e .  t h i s drops t o f o u r p e r c e n t . that one-half  of access  sixty-one  Among lower c a s t e s  Of e s p e c i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e here i s the f a c t  o f a l l l i t e r a t e respondents had n o t read any m a t e r i a l s  from the Block. supporters.  supporters,  T h i s p r o p o r t i o n i s e s p e c i a l l y h i g h among r i v a l  faction  T h i s i n d i c a t e s t h a t l i t e r a c y i s n o t a s u f f i c i e n t determinant  t o i n f o r m a t i o n through w r i t t e n m a t e r i a l s .  d i s t r i b u t i o n o f r e l e v a n t m a t e r i a l s from the Block  The r e s t r i c t e d  f u n c t i o n s as a  s i g n i f i c a n t a d d i t i o n a l b a r r i e r t o communication w i t h v i l l a g e r s .  As  many as o n e - f i f t h o f a l l respondents were p o t e n t i a l l y capable o f utilizing  l i t e r a t u r e b u t have r e c e i v e d n o t h i n g  t o read.  They a r e n o t  members o f the e x c l u s i v e youth c l u b s and r a d i o c l u b s through which such materials are d i s t r i b u t e d . F i l m s a r e u s u a l l y shown f r e e o f charge i n a p u b l i c square. Anyone may j o i n the audience.  A f i l m show i s s t i l l  a s u f f i c i e n t l y un-  u s u a l event f o r almost a l l v i l l a g e r s t o want t o see i t , i r r e s p e c t i v e of subject-matter.  The main r e s t r i c t i o n on access  pending show i n time t o g e t t h e r e . t o be informed.  Again,  i s knowledge o f a  the Proudhans a r e t h e f i r s t  Such news spreads r a p i d l y among t h e i r own r e g u l a r  a s s o c i a t e s but o n l y i n a hapazard manner t o o t h e r v i l l a g e r s .  This i s  the main reason why o n l y o n e - f i f t h o f the middle and low c a s t e s , comp a r e d w i t h almost h a l f o f the h i g h e r c a s t e s , have seen f i l m s on a l l  133  t h r e e t o p i c s o f a g r i c u l t u r e , m a l a r i a c o n t r o l , and f a m i l y p l a n n i n g . f u r t h e r q u a l i f i c a t i o n t o these o b s e r v a t i o n s access  i s t h a t r e l a t i v e ease o f  t o f i l m shows a p p l i e s o n l y t o male v i l l a g e r s .  women ever a t t e n d these shows.  A  The m a j o r i t y a r e s t i l l  Very few v i l l a g e i n h i b i t e d by  custom and s o c i a l s a n c t i o n s o f r i d i c u l e and g o s s i p from appearing i n mixed g a t h e r i n g s i n p u b l i c .  Such p r o h i b i t i o n s a r e p a r t i c u l a r l y  a g a i n s t women o f h i g h e r c a s t e .  F i l m s a r e thus u n l i k e l y t o spread i n -  f o r m a t i o n t o v i l l a g e women, u n l e s s p r e s e n t e d all-female  strong  i n secluded  c l u b s and  gatherings.  An a d d i t i o n a l f a c t o r i n r e c e p t i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n from f i l m s i s having  a good vantage p o i n t .  T h i s i s p a r t i c u l a r l y important  o f the outdoor l o c a t i o n and u s u a l l y weak soundtrack.  i n view  As i n a l l p u b l i c  meetings i n t h e v i l l a g e s , t h e c a s t e h i e r a r c h y i s d i r e c t l y r e f l e c t e d i n p r e f e r e n t i a l p o s i t i o n i n g i n t h e audience. the worst viewing p o s i t i o n s .  Lower c a s t e s u s u a l l y have  No attempt was made i n t h i s study t o  e v a l u a t e t h e amount o f i n f o r m a t i o n l e a r n e d from f i l m s . i n f r e q u e n c y and s h o r t d u r a t i o n suggest  However, t h e i r  t h a t t h e i r u t i l i t y w i l l be  l i m i t e d , a t l e a s t i n t h e absence o f a c o n t e x t f o r subsequent d i s c u s s i o n and  debate such as t h e c l u b s might p r o v i d e .  Outside  Contacts The  importance o f c o n t a c t s o u t s i d e t h e v i l l a g e can be d e t e r -  mined o n l y by t h e i r r e l e v a n c e as informants and n o t simply by t h e i r enumeration. some acquaintances  on development p r o j e c t s  A l l v i l l a g e r s a r e l i k e l y t o have  o u t s i d e t h e i r home v i l l a g e .  They have many oppor-  t u n i t i e s f o r meeting them, as i n l o c a l markets, f a i r s , o r f a m i l y  134  Table XIII. First-Hand Communication With Informants Outside the V i l l a g e by Faction and Caste  Faction and Caste  Frequency & U t i l i t y of Contacts  Pr.  Frequent - useful Occasional - useful Rare or not useful No contacts Total Respondents  Riv.  High  Mid.  Low.  Total No. %  14 29 17 40  5 7 13 75  20 11 9 60  3 15 11 71  3 8 10 79  31 66 60 383  51  56  45  144  244  540  6 12 11 71  135  gatherings. contacts.  Dramatic  news items may  w e l l t r a v e l r a p i d l y through  such  However, d e t a i l e d debate on development programmes i s not  n e c e s s a r i l y , o r even commonly, t h e s u b j e c t matter o f such c o n v e r s a t i o n s . In a l l ,  o n l y o n e - t h i r d of a l l respondents  r e c a l l e d ever h a v i n g d i s c u s s e d  such t o p i c s w i t h anyone o u t s i d e the v i l l a g e , and o n l y s i x p e r c e n t more than once o r t w i c e .  C l o s e t o h a l f d i d not f i n d them u s e f u l i n the  sense of l e a r n i n g a n y t h i n g new. and f e l l o w h i g h e r c a s t e s who  Significantly,  i t i s the v i l l a g e l e a d e r s  dominate t h i s s i x p e r c e n t who  claimed  f r e q u e n t and u s e f u l d i s c u s s i o n s on development programmes w i t h c o n t a c t s outside the v i l l a g e . important mants.  I t i s t h e s e p e o p l e who  are most l i k e l y t o meet  l o c a l f i g u r e s and v i s i t i n g o f f i c i a l s who  For the most p a r t , however, the people who  may  be good  infor-  are c o n t a c t e d o u t s i d e  the v i l l a g e are l i k e l y t o be of r o u g h l y s i m i l a r s o c i a l p o s i t i o n to the v i l l a g e r h i m s e l f , and hence they are l i k e l y t o e x p e r i e n c e r e s t r i c t e d access t o f i r s t - h a n d communication.  similarly  C a s u a l c o n t a c t s are  thus u n l i k e l y t o p r o v i d e an e f f i c i e n t channel f o r s p r e a d i n g  additional  i n f o r m a t i o n on development programmes t o the m a j o r i t y of v i l l a g e r s . One  important  e x c e p t i o n t o t h i s p a t t e r n proved  t o be  seed  merchants, the o n l y s i g n i f i c a n t e x t e r n a l source of i n f o r m a t i o n mentioned by the v i l l a g e r s .  In the f o u r t h v i l l a g e the l o c a l r e t a i l s t o r e i s  owned and operated by a wealthy proved  f a m i l y from t h a t v i l l a g e .  The owner  t o be a v a l u a b l e informant f o r many v i l l a g e r s , r i v a l l i n g  o f f i c i a l s themselves.  He was  s t r o n g l y motivated  t o a d v e r t i z e the newer  seeds and chemical f e r t i l i z e r s which he s o l d i n h i s s t o r e . r e g u l a r b u s i n e s s c o n t a c t s w i t h seed producers  Block  He a l s o had  and d i s t r i b u t o r s  from  e x p e r i m e n t a l farms and they p r o v i d e d him w i t h d e t a i l e d i n f o r m a t i o n on  136  the l a t e s t developments.  This store owner may well be the single most  important factor which accounts for the increased levels of knowledge of improved seeds and newer f e r t i l i z e r s i n this v i l l a g e , r e l a t i v e to the others. In summary, the above data strongly support the f i r s t  hypothesis.  Where p a r t i c u l a r individuals exercise control over first-hand communication they have c l e a r l y encouraged the access of close faction associates and those of s i m i l a r caste rank over other sectors of the communities.  The  anomalous p o s i t i o n of r i v a l factions among the higher castes suggests that status d i s p a r i t y within a community i s more decisive than membership i n r i v a l factions i n r e s t r i c t i n g propensity for association.  In every  case where v i l l a g e leaders have been made responsible for organizing meetings, clubs, or arranging the d i s t r i b u t i o n of mass media f a c i l i t i e s , they have given preference to their own higher castes.  f a c t i o n associates and fellow  The p u b l i c meetings have taken on the character of  private clubs for the organizers, and the same i s true for the public radio, and l i t e r a t u r e supplied through the Block, and to some extent even f i l m shows. alter this.  Block personnel on t h e i r part have done l i t t l e to  Their v i s i t s are confined to the wealthy higher caste  sectors, almost t o t a l l y neglecting the lower caste r e s i d e n t i a l areas. Meetings with the l a t t e r are neither a c t i v e l y sought nor welcomed. In summary, the multiple channels for first-hand communication between Block o f f i c i a l s and v i l l a g e r s a l l r e f l e c t and reinforce the same pattern of r e s t r i c t e d access.  The lines of association through  which such communication i s directed a l l occur primarily within, rather than across, the hierarchy of caste rank.  The close f a c t i o n supporters  137  of  v i l l a g e l e a d e r s and f e l l o w h i g h e r c a s t e s have p r e f e r e n t i a l access  to  a l l means o f communication.  r e l y on more haphazard  The remainder o f t h e communities  and i n d i r e c t communication  must  a t second and t h i r d  hand through these i n t e r m e d i a r i e s .  Landholding and Access The f u r t h e r q u e s t i o n b r i e f l y examined here i s the r e l a t i v e s i g n i f i c a n c e o f l a n d h o l d i n g as a determinant o f p r e f e r e n t i a l access to  communication,  r e l a t i v e t o faction and caste a f f i l i a t i o n  considered  above. In landowners  t h i s study, v i l l a g e Proudhans a r e a l l r e l a t i v e l y drawn from l o c a l l y h i g h e r c a s t e s .  may thus r e f l e c t e i t h e r o f these dimensions. cance o f l a n d h o l d i n g i s d i f f i c u l t  large  Their favoured associates The independent  signifi-  t o assess because o f the h i g h o v e r a l l  c o r r e l a t i o n between t h i s and o t h e r dimensions o f c a s t e rank and f a c t i o n affiliation.  T h i s i s i n d i c a t e d i n Table XIV.  c a s t e s the p r o p o r t i o n o f l a r g e landowners  Among middle and low  i s negligible.  They  comprise  o n l y f o u r respondents, o r s c a r c e l y one p e r c e n t o f the t o t a l .  The l a r g e  m i n o r i t y o f both c a t e g o r i e s have below s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s .  Among  n e u t r a l h i g h e r c a s t e s f i v e respondents, e l e v e n p e r c e n t o f t h e t o t a l , rank as l a r g e landowners. rival of  Only among t h e Proudhans'  f a c t i o n s i s t h e r e a more even d i s t r i b u t i o n .  s u p p o r t e r s and  Roughly  one-third  these respondents rank as l a r g e farmers w i t h the m a j o r i t y h a v i n g  middle s i z e d h o l d i n g s .  C e l l s i z e s a r e t o o s m a l l t o p e r m i t a meaningful  breakdown along the f u r t h e r dimension o f e d u c a t i o n .  Level o f education  i s i t s e l f c l o s e l y c o r r e l a t e d w i t h both c a s t e rank and s i z e o f l a n d h o l d i n g .  138  Table XIV.  C o r r e l a t i o n Between Landholding F a c t i o n and Caste D i v i s i o n s  Landholding  and  Number o f Respondents by F a c t i o n and  0-2 a c r e s 3-8 a c r e s 9+ a c r e s  Caste  P  R  H  M  L  10 24 17  11 28 17  19 21 5  93 50 1  191 50 3  Table XV. Access to F i r s t - H a n d Communication by F a c t i o n and Caste d i v i s i o n s , c o n t r o l l i n g l a n d h o l d i n g  Communication Channels  F a c t i o n and Caste  by Landholding  a) Frequent  Talks with  P  R  H  M L  %  %  %  %  0-2 a c r e s 3-8 a c r e s 9+ a c r e s •  60 32 88  9 7 23  21 48 60*  6 20  0-2 a c r e s 3-8 a c r e s 9+ a c r e s  70 75 83  27 32 53  42 67 40*  17 32 100*  40 45 43  9 7 12  16 24 40*  9 26  Total No.  %  %.  Officials 3 10 _* 33*  24 36 23  7 21 54  15 28 33*  62 70 27  19 40 63  8 16 33*  33 39 13  10 22 30  b) Attend Youth Club  c ) . A l l Panchayat Meetings 0-2 a c r e s 3-8 a c r e s 9+ a c r e s * C e l l s i z e of 5 persons cent d i s t r i b u t i o n . Key:  P R H M L  = = = = =  or l e s s .  Proudhans supporters R i v a l f a c t i o n supporters Neutral higher castes N e u t r a l middle c a s t e s N e u t r a l lower c a s t e s 1  Too  _*  small for s i g n i f i c a n t  per-  139  Table XV i n d i c a t e s access t o t h r e e important  sources o f  communication w i t h B l o c k o f f i c i a l s by these f a c t i o n and c a s t e d i v i s i o n s , w h i l e c o n t r o l l i n g the v a r i a b l e o f l a n d h o l d i n g . examined a r e f r e q u e n t t a l k s w i t h o f f i c i a l s , and o f panchayat meetings. l e a d e r s who arrange marginal  The t h r e e media  attendance o f youth c l u b s  A l l a r e s u b j e c t t o some c o n t r o l by v i l l a g e  such meetings.  As an i n i t i a l o b s e r v a t i o n , the  t o t a l s f o r each medium o f communication suggest  s t r o n g r e l a t i o n s h i p between l a n d h o l d i n g and a c c e s s .  there i s a  I n each  marginal  t o t a l the l a r g e r l a n d h o l d e r s have c o n s i s t e n t l y g r e a t e r access than do middle s i z e d farmers. likely  t o enjoy  Those w i t h below s u b s i s t e n c e h o l d i n g s a r e l e a s t  such a c c e s s .  T h i s a s s o c i a t i o n , however, does NOT h o l d  a c r o s s f a c t i o n and c a s t e d i v i s i o n s w i t h i n the v i l l a g e  communities.  Respondents w i t h s i m i l a r l a n d h o l d i n g s do NOT experience access  t o communication channels.  realistic  comparable  Wherever c e l l s i z e s p e r m i t a  comparison, the f a m i l i a r p a t t e r n o f p r i v i l e g e d a c c e s s by  f a c t i o n and c a s t e o b t a i n s .  The Proudhans' s u p p o r t e r s , and next t o  them the n e u t r a l h i g h e r c a s t e s , are c o n s i s t e n t l y more l i k e l y  t o have  access t o each medium o f communication than do r i v a l s and lower c a s t e s w i t h e q u i v a l e n t rank as landowners. to  i n c r e a s e as l a n d h o l d i n g s  There i s a tendency f o r access  i n c r e a s e w i t h i n f a c t i o n and c a s t e  d i v i s i o n s but t h i s influence i s not strong. s i s t e n t l y among the Proudhans' s u p p o r t e r s .  I t does n o t h o l d conAccess remains h i g h even  among t h e p o o r e s t respondents i n t h i s s e c t o r .  The a s s o c i a t i o n a l s o  does not h o l d c o n s i s t e n t l y f o r n e u t r a l h i g h e r c a s t e s i n t h e case o f youth c l u b s .  Faction a f f i l i a t i o n  differences i n landholding.  appears t o c o u n t e r b a l a n c e  large  140  T h i s suggests t h a t l a n d h o l d i n g as a dimension o f c l a s s p o s i t i o n i s not the p r i m a r y determinant o f access channels w i t h i n v i l l a g e communities.  t o communication  I t s i n f l u e n c e i s secondary t o  f a c t i o n t i e s and s i m i l a r i t y o f c a s t e p o s i t i o n t o t h a t o f v i l l a g e leaders. T h i s c o n c l u s i o n needs t o be q u a l i f i e d i n view o f the f a c t t h a t t h e r e are so few l a r g e landowners among middle and low c a s t e s . None have h o l d i n g s t o estimate  comparable t o v i l l a g e l e a d e r s .  I t i s not p o s s i b l e  the p o t e n t i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e which any g e n e r a l i z e d  increase  i n wealth might have i n overcoming s o c i a l r e s t r i c t i o n s p l a c e d on lower c a s t e s .  The d a t a do suggest t h a t t h e i r removal may depend on  p r i o r changes i n p a t t e r n s o f l e a d e r s h i p w i t h i n the v i l l a g e  Diffusion of The  communities.  Information second i s s u e examined below concerns determinants o f  d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n w i t h i n a community. which p a r a l l e l s the above h y p o t h e s i s intermediaries i n information  The t h e o r e t i c a l assumption  i s t h a t t h e p o s i t i o n o f key  flow r e l a t i v e t o the h i e r a r c h y o f  s t a t u s w i t h i n a community w i l l  c o n s t i t u t e a c r i t i c a l determinant o f  the p a t t e r n o f f u r t h e r d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n ,  i n that:  2) Where p a r t i c u l a r i n d i v i d u a l s f u n c t i o n as i n t e r m e d i a r i e s i n the d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n w i t h i n a community, they w i l l disseminate and The  information p r i m a r i l y to close  status equals,  f i r s t p a r t o f t h i s chapter  over o t h e r  s e c t o r s o f the community.  i n d i c a t e s t h a t w i t h i n the f i v e  the Proudhans, t h e i r c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s , and f e l l o w h i g h e r the h i g h e s t access  associates  villages  c a s t e s , have  t o a l l means o f f i r s t - h a n d communication w i t h  Block  141  officials.  Hence, they a r e i n a p o s i t i o n t o a c t as key i n t e r m e d i a r i e s  i n the further dissemination to a l l o t h e r v i l l a g e r s .  o f i n f o r m a t i o n on development p r o j e c t s  Those who l a c k such f i r s t - h a n d access t o  communication a r e dependent on d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n  through these  i n t e r m e d i a r i e s f o r any d e t a i l e d knowledge beyond what can be observed at  a distance.  I t i s thus p r e d i c t e d t h a t the maximum t r a n s m i s s i o n o f  i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l occur  among these same v i l l a g e s , mediated t o some  e x t e n t by s i m i l a r i t y o f c l a s s p o s i t i o n .  D i f f u s i o n to a l l other  sectors  o f the v i l l a g e communities w i l l be r e s t r i c t e d and haphazard. This p r e d i c t i o n c l e a r l y c o n f l i c t s with underly  the assumptions which  the s t r a t e g y o f f o c u s i n g a t t e n t i o n on p r o g r e s s i v e  'opinion l e a d e r s ' w i t h i n t h e v i l l a g e s .  farmers o r  T h i s s t r a t e g y assumes t h a t  when a prominent s e c t o r o f a community i s w e l l informed on development programmes t h i s w i l l  s t e a d i l y d i f f u s e downwards and outwards t o  members o f a l l o t h e r  strata.  v e r t i c a l a s s o c i a t i o n , while  T h i s approach again the present  theory  implies a theory of  implies h o r i z o n t a l  a s s o c i a t i o n o c c u r r i n g w i t h i n c a s t e and c l a s s s t r a t a r a t h e r than  across  them. I t i s important t o s t r e s s here t h a t the above h y p o t h e s i s i s not concerned w i t h enumeration o f c o n t a c t s and i n t e r a c t i o n between strata. a context and  The c r i t i c a l  i s s u e i s the e x t e n t t o which i n t e r a c t i o n p r o v i d e s  f o r the r e g u l a r exchange o f d e t a i l e d knowledge,  a d v i c e , which a r e r e l e v a n t f o r development p r o j e c t s .  news items may w e l l t r a v e l through c a s u a l c o n t a c t s , v a r i a b l y the k i n d o f news items favoured l e a d e r s h i p and mass media impact.  experiences, Dramatic  and t h i s i s i n -  i n studies of opinion  But u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f development  142  p r o j e c t s e n t a i l s f a r more comprehensive t r a n s m i s s i o n of knowledge do f l a s h news items.  D e t a i l e d knowledge o f the advantages  than  claimed  f o r d i f f e r e n t p r o j e c t s , modes o f a p p l i c a t i o n o r u t i l i z a t i o n ,  the  n e c e s s i t y f o r combined usage t o i n c r e a s e y i e l d p o t e n t i a l , o r t o promote b e t t e r h e a l t h , are e s s e n t i a l p r e r e q u i s i t e s f o r reasoned c h o i c e i n response t o these development projects."*"  This requires  s y s t e m a t i c and e x t e n s i v e d i f f u s i o n of i n f o r m a t i o n to a l l v i l l a g e r s . C a s u a l o b s e r v a t i o n and hearsay  are not adequate f o r such t r a n s m i s s i o n ,  and n e i t h e r are i n f r e q u e n t c h a t s o r p a s s i n g r e f e r e n c e t o these t o p i c s i n the midst o f o t h e r concerns.  I t i s proposed t h a t e x t e n s i v e  contacts  o f the k i n d which w i l l encourage i n - d e p t h exchange o f knowledge w i l l be c o n f i n e d p r i m a r i l y t o c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s and community, r a t h e r than a c r o s s these The  s t a t u s equals w i t h i n a  strata.  d a t a summarized i n Table XVI,  i n d i c a t e the p r o p o r t i o n of  respondents w i t h i n each f a c t i o n and c a s t e s e c t o r o f the communities who ment programmes. s a n i t a t i o n , and  were informed  village  on a l l d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the  These i n c l u d e p r o j e c t s i n a g r i c u l t u r e ,  nutrition,  f a m i l y p l a n n i n g , and a l s o knowledge of g r a n t s  a m e n i t i e s p r o v i d e d through the B l o c k s , and v i l l a g e c l u b s . o r average p r o p o r t i o n o f informed  respondents,  develop-  and  The means,  are i n d i c a t e d f o r each  major aspect o f the Block a c t i v i t i e s w i t h an o v e r a l l mean f o r a l l activities  together.  The  Table i n d i c a t e s t h a t g e n e r a l knowledge of the programmes  A d e t a i l e d d e s c r i p t i o n o f each new p r o j e c t , and the p r a c t i c a l interdependence between them, i s g i v e n i n Chapter Four "Choice A l t e r n a t i v e s i n R u r a l Development".  Table XVI.  Summary o f Average Knowledge o f Development P r o j e c t s by F a c t i o n and Caste  F a c t i o n and Caste Aspect o f Programme  P.  R.  H.  M.  L.  Total  Agriculture Nutrition Sanitation Family Planning Grants and C r e d i t V i l l a g e Clubs O v e r a l l Programme  73 57 71 81 60 73 69  58 30 55 58 49 47 50  63 41 54 67 50 60 57  50 30 42 55 38 40 43  48 20 41 49 37 28 39  53 29 47 55 43 40 40  T o t a l Farmers T o t a l Respondents  48 51  49 56  43 45  118 144  187 244  445 540  Average f o r a g r i c u l t u r e i s based o n l y on number o f farmers. In t h i s summary t a b l e a l l p r o j e c t s are g i v e n equal w e i g h t i n g . The p e r c e n t f i g u r e s i n d i c a t e the averaged p e r c e n t o f respondents who knew about each o f the-' p r o j e c t s i n c l u d e d i n d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the programmes. F o r f u l l - l e n g t h t a b l e i n which frequency o f knowledge f o r each p r o j e c t i s l i s t e d s e p a r a t e l y , see appendix, Table XLV.  A t r a n s l a t i o n o f the q u e s t i o n n a i r e i s g i v e n i n the appendix. This t a b l e i s d e r i v e d from responses t o q u e s t i o n s 5, 14-35, and 89-91, i n the schedule.  144 i s very r e s t r i c t e d .  On the average, o n l y f o r t y p e r c e n t o f a l l  v i l l a g e r s were informed  about s p e c i f i c B l o c k a c t i v i t i e s .  This  average does n o t d i f f e r w i d e l y over v a r i o u s aspects o f t h e programmes. Some o f t h e b e s t known p r o j e c t s a r e those extension.  T h i s was accorded  included i n a g r i c u l t u r a l  p r i o r i t y a t t e n t i o n by Block  officials.  But even here i n f o r m a t i o n has been slow t o d i f f u s e on newer p r o j e c t s such as improved seeds and s p e c i a l i z e d p e s t i c i d e s .  Knowledge o f t h e  n u t r i t i o n programmes may appear a r t i f i c a l l y low because o n l y male respondents were q u e s t i o n e d towards women.  w h i l e t h e programme i t s e l f was d i r e c t e d  To a l a r g e e x t e n t , however, i t i s male v i l l a g e  and heads o f households who a r e i n s t r u m e n t a l  leaders  i n i n f o r m i n g women i n  the f a m i l y o f c l a s s e s which a r e t o be arranged, and who agree t o their  participation. The  t a b l e i n d i c a t e s secondly,  t h a t t h e r e a r e pronounced  d i s p a r i t i e s i n t h e p r o p o r t i o n o f informed and c a s t e s e c t o r s o f t h e communities.  respondents a c r o s s  faction  T h i s p a t t e r n i s c l o s e l y con-  s i s t e n t w i t h the p r e d i c t i o n o f s e l e c t i v e c o n t a c t and d i f f u s i o n o f information.  I t r e f l e c t s t h e p a t t e r n o f p r e f e r e n t i a l access t o  f i r s t - h a n d communication.  The Proudhans' s u p p o r t e r s  advantaged i n the d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n . h i g h e s t p r o p o r t i o n o f informed the programmes.  are c l e a r l y  T h i s s e c t o r has t h e  respondents f o r each major aspect o f  On t h e average, s i x t y - n i n e p e r c e n t o f these  spondents were informed  re-  on Block a c t i v i t i e s compared t o t h e average  f o r a l l respondents o f f o r t y p e r c e n t .  T h i s advantage h o l d s  b u t two o f t h e s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s measured.  for a l l  Next t o them, t h e n e u t r a l  h i g h e r c a s t e s a r e most l i k e l y t o be informed.  T h i s s e c t o r o f :.  145  respondents  appear t o have r e l a t i v e l y e a s i e r a c c e s s t o i n f o r m a t i o n  d i f f u s i o n from l e a d e r s than do middle and lower c a s t e  respondents.  These l a t t e r respondents were most l i k e l y t o be excluded from  direct  communication channels w i t h the Block, and d i f f u s i o n of i n f o r m a t i o n has been slowest to r e a c h them.  Low  c a s t e respondents were l e a s t  l i k e l y t o be informed on any a s p e c t o f the programmes, and by a f a i r l y wide  margin.  Some d e v i a t i o n from the p r e d i c t e d p a t t e r n o c c u r s o n l y w i t h r e s p e c t to r i v a l  factions.  They have l i m i t e d a c c e s s t o d i r e c t  communication channels r e l a t i v e t o o t h e r h i g h e r c a s t e s , and i t was expected t h a t they would be l e s s l i k e l y t o r e c e i v e i n f o r m a t i o n . does h o l d t r u e f o r the o v e r a l l mean o r average  o f informed  but i s n o t c o n s i s t e n t over i n d i v i d u a l p r o j e c t s .  This  respondents,  For seven o f the  p r o j e c t s and a l s o f o r knowledge o f house r e p a i r g r a n t s and a i d facilities, castes.  they appear t o be b e t t e r informed than n e u t r a l h i g h e r  In some cases they are as w e l l informed as respondents  the Proudhans  1  supporters.  These d e v i a t i o n s from the p r e d i c t e d  p a t t e r n o c c u r mostly w i t h the better-known d r e s s i n g f e r t i l i z e r s , new sterilization.  among  p r o j e c t s such as top  s t y l e ploughs, l i n e sowing, l a t r i n e s ,  and  A p o s s i b l e e x p l a n a t i o n f o r t h i s d i s c r e p a n c y may l i e  i n the g r e a t e r i n t e r n a l c o h e s i o n o f r i v a l f a c t i o n s compared t o o t h e r s e c t o r s o f the communities.  Apart from the Proudhans  they are the o n l y c a t e g o r y o f respondents groups w i t h i n the v i l l a g e s .  who  T h i s c o h e s i o n may  to s p r e a d more r e a d i l y among f a c t i o n members.  comprise  1  supporters, recognized  encourage i n f o r m a t i o n They remain  handicapped  w i t h r e s p e c t t o knowledge o f more r e c e n t i n n o v a t i o n s which i s slower  146  to reach  them than o t h e r h i g h e r It i s d i f f i c u l t  castes.  to a s s e s s the f u l l  s i g n i f i c a n c e of  propor-  t i o n a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n knowledge i n the absence o f a more c a r e f u l l y c o n t r o l l e d l o n g i t u d i n a l study o f i n f o r m a t i o n flow over time. number o f p r o j e c t s such as h i g h y i e l d seeds and  chemical  fertilizers,  have been a v a i l a b l e i n the r e g i o n f o r a decade o r l o n g e r . p r o j e c t s such as new  ploughs and  to d e c l i n e over time.  Other  l i n e sowing are r e a d i l y  In both cases p r o p o r t i o n a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n knowledge may  observable. be  was  not p o s s i b l e .  expected  The measurement o f i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d i s  a l s o c o n f i n e d to the most b a s i c l e v e l o f knowledge of the of s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s .  existence  P r e c i s e measurement o f d e t a i l e d i n f o r m a t i o n  These t h r e e f a c t o r s , the time span i n v o l v e d , the  o b s e r v a b i l i t y of many p r o j e c t s , and  the simple measurement o f knowledge  used, are a l l l i k e l y t o reduce the p r o p o r t i o n o f respondents appear t o be  i g n o r a n t a t the time o f study.  f i c a t i o n s , the h i g h p r o p o r t i o n who especially significant.  In view o f these  i n f a c t claimed  ignorance  c r i t i c a l b a r r i e r t o i n n o v a t i o n which t h i s r e p r e s e n t s .  The  proposals  is  the  to  as are known, w i l l be examined i n the  chapter. In c o n c l u s i o n , d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n as a  process  quali-  further  i m p l i c a t i o n s of l i m i t e d i n f o r m a t i o n i n r e s t r i c t i n g r e a d i n e s s  following  who  I t i s a s t r o n g i n d i c a t i o n o f the extreme i n -  e f f i c i e n c y o f i n f o r m a t i o n d i f f u s i o n w i t h i n the v i l l a g e s , and  adopt even such new  A  from ' p r o g r e s s i v e farmers'  or  systematic  ' o p i n i o n l e a d e r s ' to  s e c t o r s o f v i l l a g e communities c l e a r l y does not happen.  other  Information  a t the most b a s i c l e v e l of knowing the names or e x i s t e n c e o f  different  147  s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s i s r e s t r i c t e d t o a m i n o r i t y o f respondents. i m p l i c a t i o n , d e t a i l e d knowledge o f these p r o j e c t s and t h e i r advantages f o r p r o d u c t i v i t y o r h e a l t h and t h e i r are even more r e s t r i c t e d .  Information  reaches  v i l l a g e r s o n l y i n a haphazard and incomplete  By special  interrelationships the m a j o r i t y o f  form, and only a f t e r a  pronounced t i m e - l a g o f s e v e r a l y e a r s f o l l o w i n g t h e i r knowledge among v i l l a g e leaders.  Some d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n a c r o s s s t r a t a does  o c c u r over time, b u t o c c a s i o n a l c o n t a c t s , b r i e f d i s c u s s i o n s o r b i t s o f a d v i c e , and c a s u a l o b s e r v a t i o n o f some o f the p r a c t i c e s f o l l o w e d by more knowledgeable farmers, i s c l e a r l y n o t e f f i c i e n t .  I t does n o t  p r o v i d e an e f f e c t i v e means f o r t r a n s m i s s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n i n s u f f i c i e n t d e t a i l t o c o n s t i t u t e an adequate b a s i s f o r c h o i c e f o r the m a j o r i t y of v i l l a g e r s .  The a l t e r n a t i v e s f o r c h o i c e p r e s e n t e d  t o those who do  not rank as s t a t u s equals w i t h p r i v i l e g e d l e a d e r s are both t a t i v e l y and q u a l i t a t i v e l y d i f f e r e n t .  quanti-  Many a l t e r n a t i v e s a r e n o t  r a i s e d a t a l l b u t remain unknown t o them.  In other cases, a l t e r n a -  t i v e s a r e known b u t d e t a i l e d advantages f o r p r o d u c t i o n o r h e a l t h a r e unknown, as a r e methods o f a p p l i c a t i o n and u t i l i z a t i o n o f such projects. first  The scope o f a l t e r n a t i v e s p r e s e n t e d  stage o f the d e c i s i o n p r o c e s s  Content o f Information  f o r choice a t t h i s  i s quite different.  Transmitted  T h i s l a s t p a r t o f the a n a l y s i s o f i n f o r m a t i o n f l o w i s concerned w i t h s e l e c t i v e o r b i a s e d t r a n s m i s s i o n , and the e f f e c t o f t h i s on the c h o i c e parameters o f those who r e c e i v e i n f o r m a t i o n o n l y a t second and t h i r d - h a n d .  The main assumption here i s t h a t , i n a d d i t i o n  148  to p r e f e r r e d c o n t a c t s , the a c t u a l content  of information  transmitted  w i l l be i n f l u e n c e d by the a f f i l i a t i o n o f key i n t e r m e d i a r i e s , such that: 3) I n t e r m e d i a r i e s  i n the d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n  will  encourage the t r a n s m i s s i o n o f any i n f o r m a t i o n seen as s u p p o r t i n g the o b j e c t i v e s o f c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s , and w i l l o b s t r u c t t h e t r a n s m i s s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n seen as opposed to such o b j e c t i v e s . B i a s e d t r a n s m i s s i o n and r e t e n t i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n i s w e l l documented i n studies of information d i f f u s i o n .  I t reflects selective attention,  and  a l s o i n t e n t i o n a l s e l e c t i v e emphasis and omission  and  intermediaries.  be  informants  C e r t a i n types o f i n f o r m a t i o n a r e l i k e l y t o  s t r e s s e d while n e g a t i v e l y e v a l u a t e d  or o m i t t e d  by  i n f o r m a t i o n may be suppressed  a l t o g e t h e r i n the r e - t e l l i n g .  In t h i s case, are c r i t i c a l  i t i s Block o f f i c i a l s and v i l l a g e e l i t e s who  i n t e r m e d i a r i e s i n the t r a n s m i s s i o n o f a l l i n f o r m a t i o n on  development programmes t o o t h e r v i l l a g e r s .  Hence i t i s p r e d i c t e d  t h a t t h e o b j e c t i v e s o f t h a t s e c t o r o f t h e communities w i t h which they are c l o s e l y a f f i l i a t e d w i l l  l a r g e l y determine the content o f  i n f o r m a t i o n which they make known t o o t h e r v i l l a g e r s . on p r o g r e s s i v e farmers,  The emphasis  or the educated e l i t e s as o p i n i o n  leaders  f o r o t h e r s g e n e r a l l y f a i l s t o take account o f t h i s p o t e n t i a l b i a s i n f u r t h e r d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n through them. the development programmes a r e designed  t o a l t e r the r e l a t i v e  o f lower s t r a t a compared t o wealthy e l i t e s . competition  Some a s p e c t s o f  f o r l i m i t e d investment r e s o u r c e s .  position  They may a l s o e n t a i l Under such  circumstances  149  t h i s b i a s i n t r a n s m i s s i o n can become c r i t i c a l l y  important.  Only a c u r s o r y a n a l y s i s can be attempted i n t h i s study, the absence o f s y s t e m a t i c  and d e t a i l e d data on o r i e n t a t i o n and  t e n t of i n f o r m a t i o n d i s s e m i n a t e d  from key  informants.  But  in  con-  i t is  s u f f i c i e n t to i l l u s t r a t e the impact of such d i s t o r t i o n s on the range o f i n f o r m a t i o n , and hence the boundaries o f c h o i c e open t o  other  villagers. The p a r t i c u l a r p r e f e r e n c e s  and b i a s e s o f the Block  are apparent i n the pronounced d i f f e r e n t i a l i n amount of  officials  information  t r a n s m i t t e d by them on d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the programmes, even t o close associates.  A g r i c u l t u r a l p r o j e c t s r e c e i v e d major emphasis,  and t h i s i s r e f l e c t e d i n the e x t e n s i v e concerning  i n f o r m a t i o n which was  them, p a r t i c u l a r l y among h i g h e r  status v i l l a g e r s .  a s p e c t s o f the programmes such as n u t r i t i o n and significantly less attention.  The  received Other  sanitation received  l i m i t e d emphasis on programmes to  i n c r e a s e consumption o f eggs r e f l e c t s , i n p a r t , the d i s a p p r o v a l of vegetarian o f f i c i a l s .  They were r e l u c t a n t t o be seen as promoting  the programme l e s t i t r e f l e c t a d v e r s e l y on t h e i r c a s t e s t a t u s i n the eyes of o t h e r v i l l a g e r s .  Some Block o f f i c i a l s d i s p l a y e d  r e l u c t a n c e to promote l a t r i n e s . preference  was  disapprove  of, or d i s l i k e a new  They i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e i r  to use open f i e l d s .  C l e a r l y , when o f f i c i a l s  similar  own themselves  proposal, they a r e u n l i k e l y t o promote  i n f o r m a t i o n on i t i n the v i l l a g e s where they work.  In t h i s  case o n l y one-quarter o f a l l v i l l a g e r s c o u l d even guess a t  particular the  supposed advantages o f u s i n g c l o s e d l a t r i n e s . F u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n d i s t o r t i o n arose  not from p o l i c y or  150  s e l e c t i v e i n t e r e s t s o f o f f i c i a l s , but from the v i l l a g e l e a d e r s t h e i r a s s o c i a t e s who  are the p r i m a r y i n t e r m e d i a r i e s i n a l l informa-  t i o n transmission to other v i l l a g e r s . are those  T h e i r p e r s p e c t i v e s and  o f wealthy h i g h e r c a s t e farmers,  the c o n t e n t  and  and  biases  this i s reflected in  of i n f o r m a t i o n disseminated, and more i m p o r t a n t l y , i n the  information withheld  from o t h e r s .  f  The most obvious example o f o b s t r u c t e d i n f o r m a t i o n came w i t h r e s p e c t to p r o p o s a l s  t o e s t a b l i s h c l u b s i n the v i l l a g e s .  The  v e r y r e s t r i c t e d knowledge o f such c l u b s i n a l l v i l l a g e s i s a t t e s t e d to above, but ignorance  was  p a r t i c u l a r l y pronounced i n the f o u r t h  v i l l a g e where no c l u b s operated  a t the time o f the study  the r a d i o and women's c l u b s have never f u n c t i o n e d .  and where  Both were p r o -  posed i n t h i s v i l l a g e by Block o f f i c i a l s but r e j e c t e d by the The  leaders.  Proudhan r e c e i v e d a f r e e r a d i o but kept i t as h i s p r i v a t e p r o p e r t y .  Not o n l y were o t h e r v i l l a g e r s not i n v i t e d t o form such a c l u b , they remained i n t o t a l ignorance had  ever been g i v e n .  o f the f a c t t h a t a p u b l i c r a d i o  They were thus i n no p o s i t i o n to p r e s s u r e  Proudhan to make i t a v a i l a b l e f o r them. the proposed women's c l u b . r e j e c t e d the p r o p o s a l  T h i s same Proudhan and  surrounds  close associates  s i n c e i t would v i o l a t e the customary s e c l u s i o n  o f h i g h e r c a s t e women. f u r t h e r , and  S i m i l a r ignorance  the  Information  on the proposed c l u b went no  the v a s t m a j o r i t y o f v i l l a g e r s and v i l l a g e women i n  p a r t i c u l a r remained i g n o r a n t even o f the p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t such a c l u b might be s t a r t e d . There are many o t h e r examples o f c o n f l i c t i n g i n t e r e s t s and consequent o m i s s i o n  o f i n f o r m a t i o n e s p e c i a l l y over d i s t r i b u t i o n  of  151  funds.  One  such scheme mentioned above i s f o r egg p r o d u c t i o n .  Many  v i l l a g e l e a d e r s were i n t e r e s t e d i n the p o u l t r y farm p r o j e c t because o f the generous s u b s i d i e s a v a i l a b l e . spreading  They had  little  interest in  i n f o r m a t i o n on the requirement t h a t o n e - t h i r d o f a l l eggs  produced be d i s t r i b u t e d f r e e w i t h i n the v i l l a g e , s i n c e t h i s would n e c e s s a r i l y d e t r a c t from the p r o f i t a b i l i t y o f the e n t e r p r i s e .  Only  e l e v e n p e r c e n t o f a l l respondents showed even vague knowledge of this provision.  These were c o n f i n e d m a i n l y t o r e c i p i e n t s o f the  and v i l l a g e r s i n the f i f t h v i l l a g e .  grants,  A few persons r e c a l l e d t h a t eggs  had once been g i v e n f r e e i n the s c h o o l as a 'promotion gimmick' by the Proudhan.  Almost no-one knew o f t h e i r r i g h t t o such eggs.  Competition  f o r g r a n t s and  c r e d i t f a c i l i t i e s forms a f u r t h e r  a r e a where the i n t e r e s t s o f the v i l l a g e l e a d e r s c o n f l i c t e d with of spreading d e t a i l e d information. know o f such f a c i l i t i e s , l i m i t e d the c o m p e t i t i o n  or of how  that  The more l i m i t e d the numbers to apply  who  f o r them, the more  f o r such b e n e f i t s w i l l be.  Measurement i s  d i f f i c u l t i n t h i s case s i n c e many v i l l a g e r s know of the proposed g r a n t s o n l y a f t e r the f a c t o f t h e i r d i s t r i b u t i o n , when i t i s too l a t e to apply.  T h i s was  At l e a s t one-half  e l i g i b l e , or how  powers f a l l i e n t s and  f o r house r e p a i r s .  o f the v i l l a g e r s knew t h a t such g r a n t s were a v a i l -  a b l e but o f t e n l a c k e d any is  true with respect to grants  d e t a i l e d i n f o r m a t i o n on how  to apply.  The  much, or  who  r e s u l t i s that great d i s c r e t i o n a r y  i n t o the hands o f the Proudhans both to nominate r e c i p -  to determine the amounts d i s t r i b u t e d .  aware o f t h e i r e l i g i b i l i t y and t h i s leeway would d i s a p p e a r .  I f a l l were  the a p p r o p r i a t e amount o f such The  same i s e s p e c i a l l y t r u e w i t h  fully grants respect  152  to s p e c i a l - p u r p o s e  grants  o f w e l l s , t a c c a v i loans  such as those a v a i l a b l e f o r m o d e r n i z a t i o n  f o r investment i n a g r i c u l t u r a l equipment,  2 and  special Harijan  a i d funds.  The p r e v a i l i n g l e v e l s o f i g n o r a n c e  o f a i d schemes i s such t h a t the Proudhans who know o f and a d m i n i s t e r the  schemes have c o n s i d e r a b l e  and  e x p r o p r i a t i o n o f the funds, and have c o n s i d e r a b l e  in retaining this. occurred  d i s c r e t i o n a r y powers over d i s t r i b u t i o n vested  interests  A p a r t i c u l a r example o f such c o n f l i c t i n g i n t e r e s t s  i n the t h i r d v i l l a g e , where a s p e c i a l grant was made a v a i l a b l e  t o promote c r a f t cooperatives, w i t h the i n t e n t i o n o f p r o v i d i n g mentary employment f o r the l a n d l e s s l a b o u r e r s . to s u p p l i e s o f cheap labour opposition  supple-  The p o t e n t i a l t h r e a t  f o r l a r g e farmers, and t h e i r  consequent  t o the scheme was openly c i t e d by the a c t i n g Proudhan.  As a r e s u l t the funds were i n v e s t e d o u t s i d e a c c r u i n g t o the panchayat.  No-one o u t s i d e  the v i l l a g e w i t h i n t e r e s t the Proudhan's c l o s e  a s s o c i a t e s knew t h a t such money was a v a i l a b l e o r what was done w i t h it,  l e a s t o f a l l the l a b o u r e r s  f o r whom i t was intended.  I t was  g e n e r a l l y t r u e t h a t v i l l a g e r s were unaware o f grants made a v a i l a b l e f o r v i l l a g e a m e n i t i e s o r o f panchayat funds, u n t i l a f t e r they had been spent.  I t was rumoured i n s e v e r a l v i l l a g e s t h a t t h e panchayat  had  s o l d t r e e s , f i s h , o r other  v i l l a g e property  t o r a i s e funds, b u t  few  knew e i t h e r how much money was r a i s e d o r what was done with i t .  P r e v a i l i n g ignorance o f many a i d schemes was such t h a t t h e i r a b i l i t y o n l y became known t o the r e s e a r c h e r  indirectly.  spondents were unable t o f u r n i s h t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n .  avail-  Most r e -  Most o f t h e  ' H a r i j a n ' i s a term a p p l i e d t o Untouchables, o r scheduled c a s t e s , who a r e a t t h e bottom o f the r i t u a l c a s t e h i e r a r c h y .  153  evidence  o f omission  o f information i s i n negative  form; a l l r e -  spondents were asked t o l i s t whatever g r a n t s a i d and o t h e r  facilities  were a v a i l a b l e from t h e B l o c k ,  on t h e  range o f p r o j e c t s i n c l u d e d . list  such schemes. It  i s hard  f o l l o w i n g general questions  Only a v e r y s m a l l m i n o r i t y c o u l d  readily  They a r e c l e a r l y n o t common knowledge. t o d e t a i l the evidence  f o r such p r a c t i c e s , p a r -  t i c u l a r l y s i n c e t h e v i l l a g e l e a d e r s a r e no l e s s r e l u c t a n t t o pass on  information to a researcher  than t o o t h e r s .  One such example  o c c u r r e d w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e women's c l u b i n t h e f o u r t h v i l l a g e . The v i l l a g e l e a d e r commented t h a t women i n h i s f a m i l y had gone t o n u t r i t i o n t r a i n i n g c l a s s e s and t o a c l u b a t one time, b u t t h a t no  l o n g e r operated.  they  A few o f h i s a s s o c i a t e s passed s i m i l a r comments  when they were i n t e r v i e w e d a few days l a t e r .  Problems w i t h  this  response became e v i d e n t l a t e r when i t was i n c o n s i s t e n t w i t h the t o t a l ignorance  o f the c l u b o r meetings d i s p l a y e d by o t h e r respondents.  It  became apparent t h a t no such meetings had been h e l d i n the v i l l a g e . The  Proudhan subsequently  acknowledged t h a t he had not wanted t o  d i s c u s s h i s d e c i s i o n t o oppose the f o r m a t i o n meet w i t h my d i s a p p r o v a l .  o f the club, l e s t i t  In o t h e r i n s t a n c e s v i l l a g e l e a d e r s would  exaggerate a c t i v i t i e s they had undertaken w h i l e  i n o f f i c e , and the  amount o f funds o r b e n e f i t s which they had d i s t r i b u t e d , w h i l e any  discussion of misappropriation.  omitting  These d i s t o r t i o n s i n i n f o r m a t i o n  flow from them o n l y became e v i d e n t because t h e r e was more than one r e l e v a n t informant The  i n these  instances.  i m p l i c a t i o n s o f b i a s e d i n f o r m a t i o n flow f o r t h e development  programmes a r e f a r - r e a c h i n g .  V i l l a g e l e a d e r s may be important  opinion  154  l e a d e r s i n the v i l l a g e s b u t they cannot be r e l i e d upon t o  disseminate  a c c u r a t e o r d e t a i l e d i n f o r m a t i o n on a l l aspects o f the programmes. They a r e u n l i k e l y t o spread  i n f o r m a t i o n on p r o p o s a l s which a r e o f no  concern t o t h e i r own a s s o c i a t e s .  They a r e even l e s s l i k e l y t o spread  i n f o r m a t i o n on p r o p o s a l s which c o n f l i c t w i t h t h e i r own o b j e c t i v e s . When Block o f f i c i a l s r e l y on them t o t r a n s m i t i n f o r m a t i o n w i t h i n the communities/ t h i s i n t r o d u c e s c r i t i c a l b i a s e s i n t o the amount and c o n t e n t o f such i n f o r m a t i o n l i k e l y t o r e a c h  Conclusion:  others.  Ignorance and Non-Adoption  Knowledge o f new a l t e r n a t i v e s i s a necessary t h e i r choice.  condition for  Those who l a c k i n f o r m a t i o n on development p r o j e c t s are  n e c e s s a r i l y barred  from t h e i r a d o p t i o n .  Table XVII i n d i c a t e s the  averaged p r o p o r t i o n o f non-adoption o f p r o j e c t s r e l a t i n g t o d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f t h e programmes, which can be accounted f o r by l a c k o f i n formation.  S e c t o r s o f the v i l l a g e d i f f e r w i t h r e s p e c t t o the number  o f respondents who were uninformed, and a l s o w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e number who d i d not adopt s p e c i f i c new p r o p o s a l s . the r a t i o between these  two f i g u r e s .  The t a b l e i n d i c a t e s  These r a t i o s i n d i c a t e t h a t  f a i l u r e t o adopt development p r o j e c t s i s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t o t a l o f information i n a very high p r o p o r t i o n o f cases. two-thirds  On the average,  o f a l l i n s t a n c e s o f f a i l u r e t o adopt new p r o p o s a l s  accounted f o r d i r e c t l y by l a c k o f b a s i c i n f o r m a t i o n . be a c r i t i c a l  lack  can be  T h i s appears t o  f a c t o r i n non-adoption over a l l a s p e c t s o f t h e programmes.  The mean f a l l s o n l y w i t h r e s p e c t t o f a m i l y p l a n n i n g p r a c t i c e s , r e f l e c t i n g an e s p e c i a l l y low r a t e o f adoption  among informed  These data i n d i c a t e t h a t the f a i l u r e t o d i s s e m i n a t e  respondents.  i n f o r m a t i o n on  155  Table XVII.  Summary o f Ignorance as a F a c t o r i n Non-adoption o f p r o j e c t s by F a c t i o n and Caste  Ignorance as P e r c e n t o f Non-adoption Aspect o f Programme  Agriculture Nutrition Sanitation Family Planning Grants and C r e d i t O v e r a l l Programme  F a c t i o n and Caste P.  R.  H.  M.  L.  52 62 56 18 50 48  52 82 62 37 52 54  59 63 64 33 55 56  66 73 75 38 65 64  65 84 70 45 67 65  Total  66 77 69 39 63 63  n.b. The number o f respondents who d i d not adopt new p r o p o s a l s , v a r i e s f o r each a s p e c t o f the programme, and f o r s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s . For t h i s reason t h e r e i s no c o n s t a n t number o f respondents on which these d i f f e r e n t p e r c e n t a g e s a r e based. The number o f respondents who knew about each p r o j e c t , and the number who adopted i t , i s shown i n the appendix, Table XLVI.  In t h i s summary t a b l e a l l p r o j e c t s a r e g i v e n e q u a l w e i g h t i n g . Percent f i g u r e s i n d i c a t e the averaged p r o p o r t i o n o f non-adoption o f d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the programme which can be accounted f o r by ignorance. F o r f u l l - l e n g t h t a b l e which shows ignorance as a p r o p o r t i o n o f non-adoption f o r each p r o j e c t s e p a r a t e l y , see appendix, Table XLVII.  T h i s t a b l e i s d e r i v e d from responses t o q u e s t i o n s 5, 14-35, and 89-91, i n the q u e s t i o n n a i r e g i v e n i n t h e appendix.  156  development programmes i s a major determinant o f low r a t e s o f i n n o v a t i o n w i t h i n the v i l l a g e  communities.  Subsequent q u e s t i o n s concern the f a c t o r s which may a d o p t i o n among those respondents who  are informed about new  inhibit projects.  These q u e s t i o n s are addressed i n the f o l l o w i n g two c h a p t e r s on p e r s u a s i o n and  feasibility.  CHAPTER SIX  PERSUASION AND  ^Jzy  A p p r a i s a l o f d i f f e r e n t a l t e r n a t i v e s f o r a c t i o n which are known  r  to  CHOICE  a chooser/with  respect to t h e i r a n t i c i p a t e d  th^> second s e t o f parameters bounding any  consequences,constitutes  choice s i t u a t i o n .  Such  "app risal i s n e c e s s a r i l y r e s t r i c t e d by u n c e r t a i n t y as to what these f  outcomes might be.  T h i s may  a r i s e w i t h r e s p e c t to unforseen  ramifica-  t i o n s , and a l s o w i t h r e s p e c t to the l i k e l i h o o d o f a n t i c i p a t e d consequences a c t u a l l y o c c u r r i n g .  The problem o f p r e d i c t i n g l i k e l y outcomes  i s e s p e c i a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t i n r e l a t i o n t o i n n o v a t i o n s or t o a c t i o n s which l i e o u t s i d e p r e v i o u s  experience.  Here the chooser must r e l y  h e a v i l y on i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d from o t h e r s as a b a s i s f o r a p p r a i s i n g proposals  raised.  The  accuracy  and v a l i d i t y o f such i n f o r m a t i o n i s  i t s e l f a c r i t i c a l a s p e c t o f the u n c e r t a i n t y surrounding As i n d i c a t e d above, i n f o r m a t i o n d i s s e m i n a t e d  may  and  of  incomplete, The  and  d i s t o r t e d i n the p r o c e s s  new  be both  proposals.  inaccurate  transmission.  theory o f c h o i c e b e h a v i o u r proposed here f o c u s e s on  s o c i a l f a c t o r s which may  i n f l u e n c e a chooser's assessment o f  those  the  q u a l i t y o f i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d , and the a t t e n t i o n i t warrants as a basis for evaluating future choices.  The  f o l l o w i n g hypotheses are  based on the g e n e r a l assumption t h a t a chooser's p e r c e p t i o n o f i n formants w i l l determine h i s e v a l u a t i o n o f the accuracy the d i r e c t i o n o f any b i a s or d i s t o r t i o n , and proposals  raised.  information,  a l s o the p r a c t i c a l i t y  T h i s p a r a l l e l s the p r e v i o u s  157  of  assumptions  of  regarding  158  i n f o r m a t i o n t r a n s m i s s i o n , - t h a t an informant's community w i l l formation  position within a  i n f l u e n c e the d i r e c t i o n , amount and content o f i n -  transmitted.  I t r e f l e c t s t h e same behaviour  strategies,  but  from t h e p e r s p e c t i v e o f a r e c i p i e n t o f i n f o r m a t i o n r a t h e r than  an  informant. The  f i r s t two hypotheses concern a chooser's p e r c e p t i o n o f  the competence o f immediate informants  as a d v i s o r s on t h e i s s u e s i n  question. 4) When i n f o r m a t i o n on new p r o p o s a l s  i s r e c e i v e d through  i n d i r e c t means, o r from sources whose apparent competence  i s low, such i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l have l e s s  persuasive  impact i n promoting i n n o v a t i o n than when r e c e i v e d d i r e c t l y from competent  sources.  5) When i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d on new p r o p o s a l s or vague, i t w i l l have l e s s p e r s u a s i v e  i s fragmentary  impact i n promot-  i n g i n n o v a t i o n than when i n f o r m a t i o n i s p r e c i s e and detailed. The  t h i r d hypothesis  concerns a chooser's t r u s t i n the motives and  i n t e r e s t s a s s o c i a t e d w i t h new p r o p o s a l s . 6) When i n f o r m a t i o n on new p r o p o s a l s sources  associated with previous  less persuasive  i s initiated conflicts,  from  i t w i l l have  impact i n promoting i n n o v a t i o n than when  such c o n f l i c t s a r e absent. The  f i n a l hypothesis  proposals  concerns p e r c e p t i o n o f t h e p r a c t i c a l i t y o f new  by the r e c i p i e n t . 7) When new p r o p o s a l s  are i n i t i a t e d among a w e a l t h i e r  stratum  159  of a community, they w i l l have less persuasive impact in promoting innovation among recipients of progressively lower r e l a t i v e economic p o s i t i o n . Low appraisal of information received i s expected to increase perceived uncertainties surrounding new proposals and hence r e s t r i c t adoption, irrespective of the s p e c i f i c character of the proposals raised.  A  p o s i t i v e appraisal of information received i s a necessary but not s u f f i c i e n t basis for subsequent adoption.  The l a t t e r requires, i n  addition, both a preference for the intended outcome, and in the sense of access to necessary input f a c i l i t i e s .  feasibility,  The objective  here i s to predict the conditions under which new proposals raised are least l i k e l y to be adopted. respondents who  In a l l the tables in t h i s chapter,  appeared to be ignorant of s p e c i f i c proposals are  omitted from any calculations of adoption rates.  Proposals are grouped  in r e l a t i o n to the f i v e major aspects of the programmes concerned with agriculture, n u t r i t i o n , sanitation, family planning and a p p l i cation for various development funds.  Mean adoption rates are c a l -  culated for each apseet of the programme, and also for the overall programme.  These means indicate the averaged proportion of respondents  in each category who have adopted relevant proposals. i s given equal weighting which indicate given i n the  i n these calculations.  Each project  Full-length tables  adoption rates for each project separately are  appendix.  Adoption rates vary i n two respects.  Different sectors of  the v i l l a g e communities vary i n the extent to which they have adopted those projects known to them.  Secondly, there i s wide v a r i a t i o n between  160  p r o j e c t s i n the frequency w i t h which they have been adopted. two  These  dimensions r e f l e c t d i s t i n c t a s p e c t s o f c h o i c e s , - a g e n e r a l i z e d  w i l l i n g n e s s t o innovate, and p r e f e r e n c e o r d e r i n g among p r o p o s a l s raised.  They may vary independently  fused i n choice a n a l y s i s .  a l t h o u g h they are o f t e n con-  T h e i r s e p a r a t i o n r e q u i r e s a r e s e a r c h con-  t e x t where many d i f f e r e n t i n n o v a t i o n s are p r e s e n t e d t o the same i n dividuals.  D i f f e r e n c e s i n w i l l i n g n e s s t o accept change a r e assumed  t o remain c o n s t a n t a c r o s s v a r i a t i o n i n the p o p u l a r i t y o f s p e c i f i c proposals.  The p r i m a r y  concern  i n t h i s a n a l y s i s i s with conditions  o f c h o i c e as they i n f l u e n c e g e n e r a l r e a d i n e s s t o respond from the Block.  to i n i t i a t i v e s  The r e l a t i v e p r e f e r e n c e shown f o r d i f f e r e n t p r o j e c t s  w i l l be examined s e p a r a t e l y a t t h e c o n c l u s i o n o f t h i s  chapter.  Competence o f Informants The  f i r s t assumption examined here  i s t h a t i n f o r m a t i o n on new  p r o p o s a l s i s most l i k e l y t o be a p p r a i s e d as r e l i a b l e when i t i s r e c e i v e d d i r e c t l y from informed d i t i o n s i s absent,  sources.  i . e . when informants  When e i t h e r o f these  con-  do n o t appear t o be competent,  o r when i n f o r m a t i o n i s r e c e i v e d o n l y i n d i r e c t l y a t second and t h i r d hand, i t i s l e s s l i k e l y t o be t r u s t e d as a b a s i s f o r p r e d i c t i n g t h e outcome o f new p r o p o s a l s .  The h y p o t h e s i s d e r i v e d from t h i s  assumption  i s that: 4) When i n f o r m a t i o n on new p r o p o s a l s i s r e c e i v e d i n d i r e c t means, o r from sources whose apparent  through compe-  tence i s low, i t w i l l have l e s s p e r s u a s i v e impact i n promoting i n n o v a t i o n than when r e c e i v e d d i r e c t l y competent  sources.  from  161  T h i s h y p o t h e s i s c h a l l e n g e s the expediency  o f r e l y i n g on  indirect  d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n from v i l l a g e l e a d e r s t o promote development p r o j e c t s among the m a j o r i t y o f v i l l a g e r s .  The a s s e r t i o n here i s t h a t  i n d i r e c t d i f f u s i o n w i l l have a d e p r e s s a n t e f f e c t on a d o p t i o n o f  new  p r o p o s a l s even where the c o n t e n t o f i n f o r m a t i o n u l t i m a t e l y r e c e i v e d is  comparable. Block o f f i c i a l s  are the primary source o f i n f o r m a t i o n f o r  v i l l a g e r s on a l l a s p e c t s o f the development programmes.  The two  i s s u e s f o r a n a l y s i s are thus the apparent competence o f these  key  officials  i n the eyes o f v i l l a g e r s , and the d i r e c t n e s s w i t h which i n f o r m a t i o n • from them i s r e c e i v e d .  Respondents were asked t o a s s e s s the compe-  tence o f l o c a l o f f i c i a l s w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e i r formal e d u c a t i o n , and p r e v i o u s e r r o r s o r f a i l u r e s . i z e d i n Table XVIII, f a l l positive who  T h e i r responses, summar-  i n t o two main c a t e g o r i e s : a g e n e r a l l y  a p p r a i s a l , coupled w i t h a h i g h p r o p o r t i o n o f  f e l t unable t o answer the q u e s t i o n s .  dents who  qualifications,  respondents  N i n e t y p e r c e n t o f respon-  f e l t a b l e to a s s e s s the o f f i c i a l s  judged the l e v e l o f educa-  t i o n o f these o f f i c i a l s as c o n s i d e r a b l y h i g h e r than the average f o r the v i l l a g e .  Seventy-one p e r c e n t judged them as b e t t e r informed  modern a g r i c u l t u r a l p r a c t i c e s .  on  Only f i v e p e r c e n t c l a i m e d t o have  r e c e i v e d bad a d v i c e from o f f i c i a l s , and n i n e p e r c e n t claimed t o have r e c e i v e d poor q u a l i t y the o n l y responses of o f f i c i a l s .  agricultural  likely  s u p p l i e s from them.  These are  t o prompt a low a p p r a i s a l o f the competence  These responses, however,'must be b a l a n c e d a g a i n s t  the h i g h p r o p o r t i o n o f respondents who  f e l t unable t o make any  c o n s i d e r e d judgement c o n c e r n i n g o f f i c i a l s because t h e i r c o n t a c t w i t h  162  Table XVIII.  P e r c e i v e d Competence o f Block A d v i s o r s  1) Would you r a t e Block O f f i c i a l s as w e l l informed, o r as p o o r l y informed on modern a g r i c u l t u r a l t e c h n i q u e s ? - say r e l a t i v e to yourself?  A l l responses  Cannot Assess %  Better %  %  %  They Know Theory Only %  21  55  11  7  5  71  14  9  6  *Assessment g i v e n  Same  Worse  2) How w e l l educated a r e the B l o c k O f f i c i e s ? - say r e l a t i v e t o the average v i l l a g e r ? Cannot Assess  A l l responses  Better Educated  63  *Assessment g i v e n  Less Educated  Same as Average  34  1  2  90  3  7  3) Have B l o c k O f f i c i a l s ever g i v e n you bad, o r f a l s e No Advice Given  A l l responses  75  *Assessment g i v e n  Given A d v i c e None Bad  All  responses  *Assessment g i v e n  72  Given Bad Advice  24  1  95  5  4) Have any new s u p p l i e s e t c . p r o v i d e d by B l o c k worked o u t b a d l y ? No S u p p l i e s Given %  advice?  Officials  Given S u p p l i e s None Bad %  Given Bad Supplies %  22  6  81  9  *Percentage f o r "assessment g i v e n " exclude respondents who o f f e r e d no assessment o f O f f i c i a l s on the p a r t i c u l a r q u e s t i o n .  163  o f f i c i a l s had been so l i m i t e d .  Only twenty-one p e r c e n t passed  o b s e r v a t i o n c o n c e r n i n g t h e i r knowledge o f new  agricultural  no  practices.  Most assumed t h a t they must be informed on a g r i c u l t u r e because i t was  t h e i r job.  However, as h i g h as s i x t y - t h r e e p e r c e n t had  no i m p r e s s i o n as t o t h e i r l e v e l o f e d u c a t i o n .  formed  Seventy-five percent  had never r e c e i v e d any a d v i c e from o f f i c i a l s , and seventy-two p e r c e n t had never r e c e i v e d any s u p p l i e s from them.  For these  respondents,  the q u e s t i o n s c o n c e r n i n g the q u a l i t y o f a d v i c e and a s s i s t a n c e g i v e n by o f f i c i a l s were i r r e l e v a n t . T h i s v e r y h i g h non-response t o the q u e s t i o n s designed measure the p e r c e i v e d e x p e r t i s e o f o f f i c i a l s  i s i n d i c a t i v e of the  l i m i t a t i o n s of i n d i r e c t d i f f u s i o n of information. mation has e v e n t u a l l y reached these respondents, for  While  The p r e d i c t i o n generated  i s t h a t respondents  who  are more l i k e l y  initiating  from t h i s mixed  have been informed on new  from competent o f f i c i a l s  some i n f o r -  they l a c k any b a s i s  e v a l u a t i n g i t s q u a l i t y , o r the competence o f those  the p r o p o s a l s .  t o adopt  response  proposals d i r e c t l y them than those  have r e c e i v e d i n f o r m a t i o n i n d i r e c t l y a t second or t h i r d hand. p r e d i c t i o n would not be expected  to  who  This  t o h o l d i n the event t h a t o f f i c i a l s ,  as primary i n f o r m a n t s , were p e r c e i v e d t o be  incompetent.  T h i s p r e d i c t i o n i s t e s t e d through the a s s o c i a t i o n between frequency o f d i r e c t c o n v e r s a t i o n s w i t h o f f i c i a l s and the a d o p t i o n o f known p r o j e c t s .  As shown i n the p r e v i o u s c h a p t e r , frequency  contact with o f f i c i a l s  i s c l o s e l y c o r r e l a t e d w i t h access t o o t h e r  f i r s t - h a n d means o f communication through Table XIX  of  clubs or  literature.  shows the mean frequency o f a d o p t i o n o f d i f f e r e n t  aspects  Table XIX. Summary o f Average Adoption o f P r o j e c t s Among Informed Respondents, C o n t r o l l i n g Contact With O f f i c i a l s  Contact w i t h Aspect o f Programme  Freq.  Some  Agriculture Nutrition Sanitation Family Planning A p p l i c a t i o n f o r Funds O v e r a l l Programme  66 55 • 41 12 45 51  55 44 36 8 . 36 43  Officials None  40 34 29 4 33 32  Percentages i n c l u d e ONLY informed respondents. T h i s number v a r i e s w i t h the p r o j e c t s c o n s i d e r e d . Number o f informed respondents, c o n t r o l l i n g c o n t a c t , w i t h o f f i c i a l s i s shown i n appendix, Table XLVIII. In t h i s summary t a b l e a l l p r o j e c t s a r e g i v e n equal w e i g h t i n g . The p e r c e n t f i g u r e s i n d i c a t e the averaged p r o p o r t i o n o f informed respondents who adopted p r o j e c t s r e l a t e d t o d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the programmes, when c o n t r o l l i n g f o r c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s . For f u l l - l e n g t h t a b l e i n which frequency o f a d o p t i o n o f each p r o j e c t i s l i s t e d s e p a r a t e l y , see appendix Table I L . T h i s t a b l e i s d e r i v e d from responses t o q u e s t i o n s 14 - 35, 78, and 89 - 92 i n the q u e s t i o n n a i r e g i v e n i n the appendix.  165  of the programmes when c o n t r o l l i n g l e v e l o f c o n t a c t w i t h  officials.  These p r o p o r t i o n a l a d o p t i o n r a t e s are based ONLY on the number of informed respondents,  t h a t i s , the respondents who  they knew about the p r o j e c t s i n q u e s t i o n . from a d o p t i n g new  Those who  that  were p r e v e n t e d  p r o p o s a l s through ignorance are excluded from the  percent c a l c u l a t i o n s . respondents  indicated  I t i s f o r t h i s reason t h a t no s e t number o f  can be g i v e n f o r the o v e r a l l t a b l e .  o f informed respondents  The a c t u a l number  on each p r o j e c t i s g i v e n i n the  appendix.  The d a t a summarized i n Table XIX c l o s e l y support the above prediction.  For each major a s p e c t o f the programmes the mean p r o -  p o r t i o n o f respondents  who  have adopted  new  proposals i s highest  among those h a v i n g f r e q u e n t c o n t a c t w i t h Block o f f i c i a l s .  The  aver-  age r a t e o f a d o p t i o n f a l l s among those h a v i n g o n l y o c c a s i o n a l conv e r s a t i o n s w i t h them. respondents  who  I t i s lowest among the n u m e r i c a l m a j o r i t y o f  have never t a l k e d d i r e c t l y w i t h o f f i c i a l s , but have  depended upon i n d i r e c t d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n .  This progressive  d e c l i n e i n frequency o f a d o p t i o n h o l d s w i t h r e s p e c t t o a l l but t h r e e o f the twenty-four demonstrates  s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s examined.  T h i s response p a t t e r n  t h a t w h i l e many v i l l a g e r s have l e a r n e d something  about  development programmes, t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n has had markedly l e s s among those l a c k i n g d i r e c t access t o o f f i c i a l s . have l i t t l e  impact  By i m p l i c a t i o n ,  they  i n c e n t i v e t o undertake major changes i n t r a d i t i o n a l modes  o f farming and o t h e r a c t i v i t i e s ,  i n o r d e r t o adopt new  p r o p o s a l s from l a r g e l y unknown s o u r c e s .  T h e i r response  and  untried  i s tentative  and p a r t i a l , b e i n g l i m i t e d t o the t r i a l o f a few best-known p r o j e c t s . T h i s p a r t i a l a d o p t i o n may  f u r t h e r depress i n c e n t i v e s f o r f u t u r e  166  i n n o v a t i o n s i n c e i t i s u n l i k e l y t o r e s u l t i n s i g n i f i c a n t g a i n s over traditional practices. simultaneous yield  T h i s i s e s p e c i a l l y t r u e f o r a g r i c u l t u r e where  a d o p t i o n o f a range o f p r a c t i c e s i s needed t o improve  potential. A second  f e a t u r e o f t h i s response p a t t e r n i s the  p r e f e r e n c e shown f o r some p r o j e c t s over o t h e r s . o f respondents,  relative  For each c a t e g o r y  the mean a d o p t i o n r a t e f o r the o v e r a l l programme  p r o v i d e s a base l i n e f o r comparison w i t h s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s . o n l y t h r e e e x c e p t i o n s , the r e l a t i v e a d o p t i o n o f s p e c i f i c  With  1  projects,  e i t h e r more o r l e s s f r e q u e n t l y than the mean, i s c o n s i s t e n t f o r a l l c a t e g o r i e s o f respondents.  T h i s suggests t h a t t h e r e i s no marked  v a r i a t i o n i n u n d e r l y i n g v a l u e s o r p r e f e r e n c e o r d e r i n g between these c a t e g o r i e s o f respondents. t h e i r r e a d i n e s s t o respond  The  c r i t i c a l d i f f e r e n c e between them i s  t o any i n i t i a t i v e s  from the B l o c k .  A s e p a r a t e t e s t o f the h y p o t h e s i s i s the r e l a t i v e cance o f c o n t a c t , over f a c t i o n and c a s t e a f f i l i a t i o n , v a r i a t i o n i n adoption r a t e s .  signifi-  in predicting  I f the above h y p o t h e s i s i s c o r r e c t , i t  i s p r e d i c t e d t h a t c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s w i l l remain  significantly  r e l a t e d t o a d o p t i o n r a t e s when f a c t i o n and c a s t e d i f f e r e n c e s controlled.  These s e c t o r s o f the communities are c l o s e l y  are  correlated  w i t h the v a r i a b l e o f c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s and hence s e v e r a l o f the cell  s i z e s are s m a l l .  The  t e s t i s thus c o n f i n e d t o the two  b e s t known  p r o j e c t s o f h i g h y i e l d i n g seeds and c h e m i c a l f e r t i l i z e r s , where the  The f u l l - l e n g t h Table IL g i v e n i n the appendix, i n d i c a t e s v a r i a t i o n i n a d o p t i o n r a t e s about the mean f o r each p r o j e c t l i s t e d .  167  base number o f informed respondents  i s large.  Table XX i n d i c a t e s  the e x t e n t o f investment i n these two major p r o j e c t s by respondents who have e i t h e r some, o r no d i r e c t c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s , c o n t r o l l i n g f a c t i o n and c a s t e d i v i s i o n s .  while  The f i r s t p a r t o f the  t a b l e i n d i c a t e s these respondents who use predominently low y i e l d seeds, mixed use, o r predominently h i g h y i e l d seeds. i n d i c a t e s those respondents who have made a minimal  The second  part  investment i n  f e r t i l i z e r s , use a medium amount, o r a l a r g e amount o f f e r t i l i z e r per acre.  The p r e d i c t i o n t h a t l a c k o f d i r e c t c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s  w i l l be l i n k e d w i t h l i m i t e d investment i n new p r o p o s a l s i s supported. W i t h i n each f a c t i o n and c a s t e , the p r o p o r t i o n o f respondents use p r e d o m i n e n t l y low y i e l d seeds, and minimal  fertilizer,  who  i s uni-  f o r m l y h i g h e r among those h a v i n g no c o n t a c t w i t h o f f i c i a l s .  The  p r o p o r t i o n who evidence h i g h investment i n e i t h e r p r o j e c t i s u n i f o r m l y lower.  T h i s c o n s i s t e n t a s s o c i a t i o n supports the g e n e r a l  assumption  t h a t i n d i r e c t d i f f u s i o n o f i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l have l i m i t e d impact i n promoting i n n o v a t i o n .  Comprehensive I n f o r m a t i o n A second c l o s e l y r e l a t e d assumption  concerns the compre-  h e n s i v e n e s s o f i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d r e g a r d i n g new p r o p o s a l s . Complete, as w e l l as a c c u r a t e i n f o r m a t i o n i s important f o r p r e d i c t i n g the f u l l  i m p l i c a t i o n s and a n t i c i p a t e d outcomes o f new p r o p o s a l s .  T h i s second assumption  i s t h a t when i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d  whatever means i s r i c h i n d e t a i l ,  through  i t i s more l i k e l y t o appear  reliable  as a b a s i s f o r a s s e s s i n g new p r o p o s a l s than when i t i s vague and  168  Table XX.  Adoption of Seeds and F e r t i l i z e r by Contact, Controlling Faction and Caste  Adoption by Faction and Caste Some Contact Seeds Used  P. %  R. H. % % %  Mainly low y i e l d Mixed Mainly high y i e l d  9 9 82  26 21 52  Total No.  33  0-15 kilo 25 k i l o 50 k i l o & over Total No.  No Contact  M. %  L.  P.  R. %  H. M. % % %  L. %  10 25 65  24 20 56  32 26 42  40 20 40  60 25 15  30 20 50  48 20 31  55 19 26  19  20  25  31  5  20  10  35  74  7 36 57  22 52 26  27 35 38  30 39 31  52 19 29  50 25 26  41 34 25  55 27 18  54 34 12  57 28 15  39  23  26  36  43  8  24  11  65  119  F e r t i l i z e r Used  Farmers not growing r i c e , are c l a s s i f i e d on the basis of seeds used for wheat only. P. R. H. M. L.  = = = = =  Proudhans supporters Rival faction supporters Neutral Higher Castes Neutral Middle Castes Neutral Lower Castes 1  These tables are derived from responses to questions 14 and 16, i n the questionnaire given i n the appendix.  169 imprecise.  T h i s i s s t a t e d as the h y p o t h e s i s 5)  that:  When i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d on new or vague,  proposals  i t w i l l have l e s s p e r s u a s i v e  i s fragmentary  impact i n promoting  i n n o v a t i o n than when i n f o r m a t i o n i s p r e c i s e and d e t a i l e d . This hypothesis nated  i s c l o s e l y r e l a t e d t o the above.  a t second and  dissemi-  t h i r d hand i s more l i k e l y t o be vague than when  r e c e i v e d d i r e c t l y from informed when such d i f f u s i o n occurs i a r i e s who  Information  sources.  T h i s may  through e x t e n s i v e  are themselves w e l l informed.  not be the  contact with  case  intermed-  I d e a l l y , the a n a l y s i s of  the r e l a t i o n between d e t a i l and p e r s u a s i o n would be based on p r e c i s e measurement o f the amount o f d e t a i l i n c l u d e d i n i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d on each p r o p o s a l . Instead,  T h i s was  not p r a c t i c a l i n the p r e s e n t  the g e n e r a l index used i s whether respondents knew o f both  n i t r o g e n and phosphate based f e r t i l i z e r s . i s t h a t those  was  The  assumption made here  l a c k i n g such i n f o r m a t i o n w i l l n e c e s s a r i l y l a c k d e t a i l e d  i n f o r m a t i o n on a l l o t h e r a s p e c t s these  study.  of a g r i c u l t u r a l e x t e n s i o n ,  are so c l o s e l y l i n k e d w i t h i n p u t s of f e r t i l i z e r .  Agriculture  g i v e n p r i o r i t y i n emphasis by the B l o c k o f f i c i a l s who  the programmes.  Evidence o f l i m i t e d knowledge of  promoted  agricultural  p r o j e c t s i s thus a good i n d i c a t o r o f l i m i t e d i n f o r m a t i o n on a g r i c u l t u r a l p r o j e c t s as w e l l .  Again,  a l l respondents who  i g n o r a n t of p a r t i c u l a r p r o j e c t s are excluded The  hypothesized  nonwere  from the a n a l y s i s .  d i f f e r e n c e i s o n l y i n degree of d e t a i l i n c l u d e d i n  information received. proposals  since  The p r e d i c t i o n i n t h i s case i s t h a t  new  are more l i k e l y t o be adopted when d e t a i l e d i n f o r m a t i o n  170  i s r e c e i v e d , as i n d i c a t e d by the key f e r t i l i z e r p r o j e c t , than when such d e t a i l i s l a c k i n g . for  Table XXI shows the averaged  each a s p e c t o f the programmes when c o n t r o l l i n g t h i s index o f  amount o f d e t a i l i n i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d . supports the above h y p o t h e s i s . who have adopted  The response p a t t e r n  The mean p r o p o r t i o n o f respondents  new p r o p o s a l s i s c o n s i s t e n t l y lower among those who  l a c k d e t a i l e d knowledge o f f e r t i l i z e r s . to  adoption r a t e s  This holds true with respect  a l l b u t t h r e e o f the s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s examined.  Relative prefer-  ence f o r s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s a g a i n does n o t v a r y w i d e l y a c r o s s the two c a t e g o r i e s o f respondents.  F o r a l l save t h r e e s p e c i f i c p r o j e c t s  t h e i r r e l a t i v e frequency o f a d o p t i o n , above o r below the mean, i s c o n s t a n t a c r o s s both c a t e g o r i e s o f respondents.  (See appendix  Table L I ) . A f u r t h e r t e s t o f the s i g n i f i c a n c e o f t h i s a s s o c i a t i o n i s the e x t e n t t o which the c o r r e l a t i o n i s r e t a i n e d when c o n t r o l l i n g f a c t i o n and c a s t e a f f i l i a t i o n .  I f the general hypothesis i s c o r r e c t ,  the r e l a t i o n between d e t a i l i n i n f o r m a t i o n and a d o p t i o n r a t e s w i l l h o l d w i t h i n each s e c t o r o f the communities. T a b l e XXII supports t h i s p r e d i c t i o n . p r o p o r t i o n o f respondents  The d a t a shown i n  W i t h i n each s e c t o r a h i g h e r  who have o n l y vague i n f o r m a t i o n c o n t i n u e  to  use predominently  low y i e l d seeds and l i m i t e d f e r t i l i z e r .  of  them make l a r g e investments  i n e i t h e r p r o j e c t than  Fewer  respondents  from the same s e c t o r o f the communities who have more d e t a i l e d information. In to  summary, t h e two p r o p o s i t i o n s examined above both  the same u n d e r l y i n g assumption,  relate  namely t h a t r e a d i n e s s t o respond  171  T a b l e XXI. Summary of. Average Adoption o f P r o j e c t s Among Informed Respondents, C o n t r o l l i n g D e t a i l i n I n f o r m a t i o n  D e t a i l i n Information A s p e c t o f Programme  Agriculture Nutrition Sanitation Family Planning A p p l i c a t i o n f o r Funds O v e r a l l Programme  High  59 49 42 10 35 45  Low  44 36 31 4 31 34  Percentages i n c l u d e o n l y informed respondents. T h i s number v a r i e s w i t h the p r o j e c t s c o n s i d e r e d . Number o f informed respondents, c o n t r o l l i n g d e t a i l i n i n f o r m a t i o n , i s shown i n appendix, Table L. In t h i s summary t a b l e a l l p r o j e c t s a r e g i v e n equal w e i g h t i n g . The p e r c e n t f i g u r e s i n d i c a t e the averaged p r o p o r t i o n o f informed respondents who adopted p r o j e c t s r e l a t e d t o d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s o f the programmes, when c o n t r o l l i n g d e t a i l i n i n f o r m a t i o n . For f u l l - l e n g t h t a b l e i n which frequency o f a d o p t i o n o f each p r o j e c t i s . . l i s t e d s e p a r a t e l y , see appendix, T a b l e L I . T h i s t a b l e i s d e r i v e d from responses t o q u e s t i o n s 14-35, 78, and 89-92 i n the q u e s t i o n n a i r e g i v e n i n the appendix.  172  Table XXII.  Adoption of Seeds and F e r t i l i z e r by Degree of Detail i n Information, Controlling Faction and Caste  Adoption by Detail i n Information Detailed Information  Incomplete  Information  P. %  R. H. M. % % % %  L.  P.  Seeds Used  R. %  H. M. % % %  L. %  Mainly low y i e l d Mixed Mainly high y i e l d  12 9 79  37 21 42  12 12 76  20 19 61  35 22 43  17 17 67  50 25 25  23 38 38  59 20 21  55 19 26  Total No.  32  19  17  31  35  6  20  13  29  70  0-15 k i l o 25 k i l o 50 k i l o and over  14 26 60  21 39 39  17 30 52  30 28 42  41 •21 37  16 59 25  42 46 12  64 36 0  56 41 3  63 28 9  Total No.  35  23  23  40  53  12  24  14  59 108  F e r t i l i z e r Used  Farmers no growing r i c e , are c l a s s i f i e d on the basis of seeds used for wheat only. P. = R. = H.-= M. = L. =  Proudhans' supporters Rival faction supporters Neutral Higher Castes Neutral Middle Castes Neutral Lower Castes  These tables are derived from responses to questions 14, and 16, i n the questionnaire given i n the appendix.  173  to any new p r o p o s a l i s c o n t i n g e n t upon a r e c i p i e n t s p e r c e p t i o n o f 1  the q u a l i t y o f i n f o r m a t i o n r e c e i v e d , i n terms o f which p r o p o s a l s can be e v a l u a t e d .  Respondents appear r e l u c t a n t t o i n n o v a t e when they  l a c k any f i r m b a s i s f o r r e l i a n c e i n the competence o f i n f o r m a n t s , o r i n the a c c u r a c y t o them.  and thoroughness w i t h which i n f o r m a t i o n i s t r a n s m i t t e d  T h i s low p e r s u a s i v e impact  the p r o p o s a l s i n q u e s t i o n .  Support  i s i r r e s p e c t i v e o f t h e nature o f f o r b o t h p r o p o s i t i o n s emphasises  t h a t the s t r a t e g y o f f o c u s i n g a t t e n t i o n on a core o f v i l l a g e  leaders  as p o t e n t i a l o p i n i o n l e a d e r s f o r o t h e r s has a 'doubly n e g a t i v e on the success o f r u r a l development programmes.  effect  As i n d i c a t e d i n the  p r e v i o u s c h a p t e r , the l e v e l o f i n f o r m a t i o n r e a c h i n g o t h e r s o u t s i d e the range o f c l o s e a s s o c i a t e s and s t a t u s e q u a l s o f these l e a d e r s i s very r e s t r i c t e d .  Moreover, such i n f o r m a t i o n as i s r e c e i v e d has con-  s i d e r a b l y weaker p e r s u a s i v e impact new p r o p o s a l s .  i n promoting a c t i v e response t o  T h i s d e c l i n e i n adoption r a t e s i n response  q u a l i t y i n f o r m a t i o n i s evidenced  t o poorer  even.among r e l a t i v e l y c l o s e r  assoc-  i a t e s o f the v i l l a g e l e a d e r s , although n o t t o the same e x t e n t as among o t h e r s e c t o r s o f t h e communities.  Trust i n Advisors The v a r i a b l e o f t r u s t i n a d v i s o r s i s q u a l i t a t i v e l y from concern w i t h t h e i r competence.  different  I t relates to evaluation of  the u n d e r l y i n g i n t e r e s t s and b i a s e s which may be expected p r o p o s a l s supported by d i f f e r e n t a d v i s o r s . the p r e v i o u s chapter was t h a t informants  to influence  The assumption t e s t e d i n  can be expected  i n f o r m a t i o n they t r a n s m i t i n favour o f p r o p o s a l s they support, and a g a i n s t o b j e c t i v e s which they oppose.  to bias  actively  The p a r a l l e l  174  assumption examined here i s t h a t r e l a t i o n s w i t h a d v i s o r s w i l l be a c r i t i c a l determinant o f how weighted by a r e c i p i e n t . by l i k i n g of  a d v i c e r e c e i v e d w i l l be i n t e r p r e t e d or  Where these r e l a t i o n s are c h a r a c t e r i z e d  and t r u s t , t h i s i s l i k e l y t o promote a p o s i t i v e  the v a l u e o f new  p r o p o s a l s which they support.  appraisal  Conversely,  diffi-  c u l t or h o s t i l e r e l a t i o n s are l i k e l y t o promote s c e p t i c i s m r e g a r d i n g p r o p o s a l s which they i n i t i a t e .  The h y p o t h e s i s d e r i v e d from t h i s  assumption i s t h a t 6) When i n f o r m a t i o n on new  proposals i s i n i t i a t e d  sources a s s o c i a t e d w i t h previous c o n f l i c t s , have l e s s p e r s u a s i v e impact than when such c o n f l i c t s are The e x t e n t o f h o s t i l i t y  generated  from  i t will  i n promoting i n n o v a t i o n absent.  i n r e l a t i o n s with informants i s  independent o f a p p r a i s a l o f t h e i r competence, and r e l a t e s t o e n t k i n d s o f e x p e r i e n c e w i t h them.  differ-  B l o c k o f f i c i a l s and Proudhans  are p r i m a r i l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r i n i t i a t i n g new  p r o p o s a l s i n the v i l l a g e s .  The number and s e v e r i t y o f c o m p l a i n t s which i n d i v i d u a l  respondents  r a i s e d a g a i n s t these persons p r o v i d e s an index o f the c h a r a c t e r o f r e l a t i o n s between them.  G e n e r a l c o m p l a i n t s o f f a v o u r i t i s m or d i s -  i n t e r e s t are g i v e n a s i n g l e w e i g h t i n g i n the index o f a n t i p a t h y , w h i l e more s e r i o u s c o m p l a i n t s o f c h e a t i n g and abuse are g i v e n a double w e i g h t i n g .  I t was  assumed t h a t d i r e c t e x p e r i e n c e o f f r a u d  and p h y s i c a l abuse would weigh more s t r o n g l y i n a  respondent's  d i s t r u s t o f o f f i c i a l s and v i l l a g e l e a d e r s than would more g e n e r a l i z e d