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Mechanization, Digitalization, And Rural Youth-Stakeholder Perceptions On Three Mega-Topics For Agricultural Transformation In Four African Countries

Mechanization, digitalization, and rural youth engagement are central to African agricultural transformation. Each of these topics is associated with debates on opportunities, risks, and appropriate policy actions, which become visible in international research discourses and policy fora. In contrast, little is known about the viewpoints of national stakeholders. This paper explores the viewpoints of 195 respondents from different stakeholders categories in Benin, Kenya, Nigeria, and Mali. The results reveal hitherto neglected aspects, e.g., the role of animal traction, the continued appeal of state-led mechanization, and data sovereignty concerns. Gender, age, and education influence the viewpoints on some topics. Paying attention to local stakeholders can help to choose and design the most promising policies/programs and ensure their implementation on the ground.