Infrastructural services including roads, electricity, telecommunications and irrigation, are all considered to be of major importance in stimulating agricultural investment and growth. However, their existence is still very limited in most rural areas of many developing countries. Whilst much information in the scientific and grey literature exists on the issues relating to infrastructural impacts on agricultural development, there is no recent, objective, and independent review of the available evidence. The research question for this systematic review was therefore to assess \"What is the impact of infrastructural investments in roads, electricity and irrigation on agricultural productivity?\"
This systematic review summarises the research objectives, approaches and methods, including the search criteria, data sources, search and extraction strategies, data synthesis, analysis and interpretation. The systematic review principally focussed on four main areas (i) road infrastructure (incorporating road networks and transport vehicles) and its impact on farmer access to agricultural markets; (ii) rural electricity supplies (consumption and expenditure) and its impact on agricultural productivity (irrigation, storage, cooling/refrigeration), product price, labour wages and rural GDP; (iii) telecommunications (telephones and internet) and its impact on crop prices, response to market demands, feed and fertilizer supply and costs, and (iv) irrigation infrastructure (incorporating water storage capacity per unit area, access to water and expansion of irrigated areas) and its impact on crop diversity, crop productivity (yield), crop prices, labour costs, rural consumption and returns of irrigation investment to the rural community and poverty reduction.
Following definition of suitable search terms and study inclusion/exclusion criteria, a detailed search of available evidence was completed using a range of scientific bibliographic sources and internet websites. In total, 934 articles were identified, and then screened by title and abstract to provide a final listing of 155 articles and reports which were used in the analysis.
Daccache, A.; Knox, J.; Hess, T. What is the impact of infrastructural investments in roads, electricity and irrigation on agricultural productivity? Final review. Collaboration for Environmental Evidence (CEE), Bangor, UK (2013) 59 pp. [Systematic Review CEE 11-007]