This is a brief overview of the issues surrounding the concept and application of devolution of decision-making in the context of rural peoples in two Asian countries. The mechanics of devolution (the how, why and what) are discussed as well as the instruments of devolution. Three case studies are presented to illustrate the experience of local people trying to deal with intense competition for limited resources. China provides two case studies, the first about village-level rangeland management in an environmentally sensitive catchment of a major tributary to the Yellow River in Qinghai and the second relates to experience with Water User Associations in the river basins of the Hexi Corridor in Gansu. Mongolia provides the third Case study. It deals with legislative reform for grassland and rangeland management and the role of Pasture User Groups in self-management of the precious grazing and water resources so vital to the herdsmen.
In this era of competitiveness, organizations compete by enhancing their service quality to satisfy their customers. Primary data for the study was collected from eighty consumers who visited the retail shop which sold chilled chicken and meat products exclusively under its own brand name in Coimbatore city of Tamil Nadu state by direct interview method using Retail service quality scale. This study was undertaken to assess the interrelationships between service quality attributes, customer satisfaction and customer loyalty by developing a model, linking these three constructs were analyzed using SEM PLS method. The retail service quality model consisted of the five dimensions physical appearance, reliability, personal interaction, problem solving and policy was termed as the structural model. This model measured the strength of the five dimensions in estimating the retail service quality construct and results indicated policy, needs to be improved by the case firm for enhancing the retail service quality. The results of the study indicated that customer satisfaction and customer loyalty are dependent on retail service quality whereas customer loyalty to a particular store was not completely depending on satisfaction alone.
In this study new improved robust estimator has been proposed for precise estimation of finite population variance in simple random sampling by incorporating as auxiliary information of probability weighted moment. Properties associated with proposed estimators are assessed by mean square error and bias through numerical demonstration. We have also provided theoretical efficiency comparison of the study.
This study was carried out to examine the effects of climate change on agricultural productivity in Nigeria. Changes in annual rainfall, temperature, and CO2 emission were used as proxies for climate change. Autoregressive Distributed Lag (ARDL) Bound test approach to co-integration was used for the analysis. The result shows that climate change is insignificant in influencing agricultural productivity in the short run. It is recommended that the proposed agricultural policy should be keenly implemented by taking Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) prediction into consideration.
Major dimensions of benefits and constraints of ICTs utilization among cassava farmers in Uyo agricultural zone were assessed in this study. A multi-stage sampling method was used to select 100 respondents for the study. The study relied on primary data gathered through the use of well designed and validated questionnaire. Factor analysis technique and composite index were adopted to ascertain the major dimensions of benefits and constraints of ICTs utilization among cassava farmers as well as the level of severity of the constraints that are responsible for the sub-optimal cassava production in Uyo agricultural zone. The major dimensions of benefits of ICTs utilization perceived by the respondents in the study area include; promotion of access to cassava production, processing and marketing information; promotion of easy access and sharing of information on improved cassava varieties, weather forecasting and credit facilities for cassava production; Promotion of adoption of cassava production innovations and promotion of effective cassava production leading to rural development. Findings also revealed that the numerous constraints to the use of ICT tools by cassava farmers in Uyo agricultural zone unlocked separately into government policies, technological and administrative constraints as the major dimensions of constraints. How rewarding the efforts on improvement of cassava would be, even in the nearest future, would depend to a large extent on the elimination of these major constraints. Unless pragmatic approach is used to reduce the constraints responsible for the low utilization rate of ICTs, food security in Uyo agricultural zone, South-south, Nigeria, would still be elusive.