Food Security

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 253–272 | Cite as

Does gender matter in the adoption of push-pull pest management and other sustainable agricultural practices? Evidence from Western Kenya

  • Beatrice W. Muriithi
  • Kassie Menale
  • Gracious Diiro
  • Geoffrey Muricho


This paper examines whether there is a difference in the adoption of push-pull pest management technology (PPT) and other sustainable agricultural practices (SAPs) on field-plots managed by males or females and those that are jointly-managed by males and females using plot-level and gender disaggregated data from Western Kenya. The econometric results suggest that there was no gender heterogeneity in the adoption of PPT after controlling for the manager of the field-plot and plot characteristics. However, gender differences in the adoption pattern of some other SAPs were evident. Jointly-managed plots were more likely to receive animal manure and soil and water conservation measures compared to male-managed and female-managed plots. We did not find any gender differences in the adoption of maize-grain legume intercropping, crop rotation, fertilizer use and improved maize seeds. The analysis further showed a significant correlation between PPT and other SAPs, suggesting that the adoption of agricultural technologies is interrelated. Lack of evidence on gender differences suggests that promotion and dissemination of PPT can be supported equally for male and female cereal farmers. Wider adoption can be achieved through promoting awareness of the technology and offering training through field days.


Push-pull technology Complementarity Trade-offs Plot manager Agricultural Technology Adoption Kenya Africa 



This paper is based on the Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP)-Structural Transformation of African Agriculture and Rural Spaces ‘STAARS’ Project-10 and International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe) research work carried out with financial support from the Government of Canada through the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), and the European Union through the Integrated Biological Control Applied Research Programme (IBCARP). PEP receives core funding from the Department for International Development (DFID) of the United Kingdom (or UK Aid) and the IDRC. icipe also receives core funding from DFID, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany, and the Kenyan Government. An earlier version of this paper was presented at the 91st Agricultural Economics Society Conference (AES 2017) at the Royal Dublin Society Center, Ireland. We are grateful for the useful comments from the participants at the conference. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of icipe or PEP.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature and International Society for Plant Pathology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Beatrice W. Muriithi
    • 1
  • Kassie Menale
    • 1
  • Gracious Diiro
    • 1
  • Geoffrey Muricho
    • 1
  1. 1.International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe)NairobiKenya

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