Delivery Systems

Delivery system(s) is a term widely used in the agroecological literature to designate at least part of the systems needed to transfer information from scientists to end users, but it is not clearly defined.

So, adapting the definition from the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a delivery system in an agroecological context is a scientifically-based agroecological method assembled in a format that is easily accessed and deployed by the end user. These formats can be as simple as a postcard depicting a sustainable vineyard or as complex as a website. Regardless of the form, it has to be appropriate, accessible and acceptable to the end-users’ preferred learning style. Delivery systems have been used in the literature from as early as 1978 (Infanger et al. 1978). These authors described a new system of electronic information delivery and the challenges it faced with integration and development in agriculture. Brown (1981) recognised the changing roles during this period of time and the necessity of effective delivery systems in agriculture for continued support of the rising demand for information and productivity (Mann and Wratten 1991, 1992; Mann et al. 1991).

The internet (where available) in modern-day society has diversified delivery systems to an unprecedented scale because of the vast amounts of information that can be accessed. Bajwa et al. (2003) recognised the importance of this tool and its application to integrated pest management. Even though electronic media in delivery systems are powerful and important, it is still essential to recognise that not everyone has access to this tool and that hardcopy delivery systems can be just as important and powerful. For example, in 2009, 40% of agricultural households in India received their information through non-electronic delivery systems (Adhiguru et al. 2009). Also, the high-profile Greening Waipara Programme in New Zealand made available to the public simple printed flyers while producing more ambitious newsletters for winegrowers involved – and a website. However, such systems are of little use unless a further step is implemented; that is clear Implementation Pathways – see next.

Examples of some delivery systems used to share scientific advances

  • Bio-Protection Research Centre newsletter December 2016.
  • Greetings cards used as part of the Greening Waipara Programme and depicts a successful example of reducing pesticides in vineyards. Photo: Jean-Luc Dufour, Accolade Wines.


Adhiguru P, Birthal P, Kumar B, 2009. Strengthening pluralistic agricultural information delivery systems in India. Agricultural Economics Research Review 22: 77-79.

Bajwa W, Coop L, Kogan M, 2003. Integrated pest management (IPM) and Internet-based information delivery systems. Neotropical Entomology 32: 373-383.

Brown T, 1981. Changing delivery systems for agricultural extension: The extension teacher – changing roles and competencies. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 63: 860-862.

Infanger C, Robbins L, Debertin D, 1978. Interfacing research and extension in information delivery systems. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 60: 915-919.

Mann BP, Wratten SD, 1991. A computer-based advisory system for cereal aphids – field testing the model. Annals of Applied Biology, 118: 503-512.

Mann BP, Wratten SD, Poehling M, Borgemeister C, 1991. The economics of reduced-rate insecticide applications to control aphids in winter wheat. Annals of Applied Biology, 119: 451-464.

Mann BP, Wratten SD, 1992. A computer-based advisory system for control of the summer pests of winter oilseed rape in Britain. Crop Protection, 11: 561-572.