This report details the development of a Flores cocoa farmer decision taking model using systems thinking, in particular systems dynamics and the creation of a management flight simulator. The model is based on understanding the key elements in cocoa farmer decision taking and who farmers listen to. Each chapter of the report represents a step in system dynamics methodology as the model is developed and tested. The systems decision taking model is used to simulate the potential impacts of proposed interventions for the Flores cocoa value chain. The results indicate that improvements in the cocoa value chain are likely to be short-term unless the core problem of lack of farmer knowledge is addressed, rather than the specific constraints dealt with by each intervention. An alternative strategy to improve farmer knowledge is suggested and model results indicate this has a long-term benefit on income and productivity. Based on a critical analysis of system dynamics in international development, the author recommends using this methodology to test interventions prior to implementation.

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