Date of this Version
The primary purpose of this study was to determine if the "Conservation Neighbor to Neighbor" program was an effective method of delivery to inform farmers and ranchers about conservation practices in Nebraska. A survey instrument was developed with the help of a committee of experts. The instrument asked respondents to rate the degree of agreement, quality and interest in the Conservation Neighbor to Neighbor program and the effectiveness of the delivery method. The population for the study included all the program hosts and a random sampling of all farmers and ranchers in Nebraska. The following conclusions were drawn from the study: 1. Characteristics of hosts and general farmers and ranchers surveyed fit the Lionberger's (1968) and Roger's (1983) adoption diffusion theory descriptions of early and late adopters. 2. The general farmers and ranchers surveyed reported having less percentage of erodible acres then did the host. This supported a study done by (Hoover, Wiitala, 1980), in which farmers denied erosion problems existed on their land. 3. The primary sources from which the general farmers and ranchers surveyed had heard of the Conservation Neighbor to Neighbor program were farm magazines, newspapers, friends and neighbors. Field days and other farmers and ranchers were the top ranked delivery methods. This supported Lionsberger' s (1968) and Roger's (1983) theory, that late adopters would receive information from local farmers, farm papers, and magazines. This also adds support to the conservation Neighbor to Neighbor program which used both field days and other farmers and ranchers to disseminate information. The Conservation Neighbor to Neighbor program was ranked 6th by the host and 7th by the general farmers and ranchers as a method of delivery. 5. Both groups (host and general farmers and ranchers) agreed with the benefits of the Conservation Neighbor to Neighbor program. Encourages farmers/ranchers to try a conservation practice. Is a good way for farmers/ranchers to share information. Is a good way to illustrate the advantages and disadvantages of a conservation practice.