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Successful agricultural mechanization requires building knowledge and skills of machinery owners, operators and technicians on how to manage, run, maintain and repair machinery. Building such knowledge and skills still remains a major bottleneck in most African countries. A study in Ghana has found that 80% of the tractor-owners regularly face long breakdowns due to a lack of knowledge and skills. But what kinds of knowledge and skills are needed? And what are the most appropriate ways to build them? This policy brief presents some answers based on a comprehensive study on the knowledge and skill requirements for machinery owners and operators in Zambia.

This Policy Brief is based on Thoelen, Jan (2018). New approaches to training and education in sustainable agricultural mechanization for emerging farmers in Zambia. Master thesis. University Hohenheim.