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Creating small farm entrepreneurs or doing away with peasants? State driven implementation of drip irrigation in Chile

Henriquez D., Kuper M., Escobar M., Chia E., Vasquez C.. 2017. In : Venot Jean-Philippe (ed.), Kuper Marcel (ed.), Zwarteveen Margreet (ed.). Drip irrigation for agriculture: untold stories of efficiency, innovation and development. Abingdon : Routledge, p. 122-133. (Earthscan Studies in Water Resource Management).

In a context of water shortage and liberalized land and water markets, peasants have increasing difficulty obtaining access to irrigation. The Chilean state promoted the improvement of irrigation efficiency through the introduction of irrigation technology as a solution to this problem. This chapter analyses the process of state-led technology transfer of drip irrigation in a peasant community in the Limarí Valley (Chile). It reveals a top - down approach to the introduction of technology, in which the state aims to reproduce the dominant social and economic structure. This contributes to a "depeasantization" process because, to obtain access to the technology, the peasants are obliged to adapt to an entrepreneurial mode of farming.

Mots-clés : irrigation goutte à goutte; innovation; adoption de l'innovation; changement technologique; petite exploitation agricole; communauté rurale; agriculteur; entrepreneur; petite entreprise; utilisation de l'eau; gestion des eaux; politique de l'eau; conservation de l'eau; chili

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