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Will Farmers Trade Profits for Stewardship? Heterogeneous Motivations for Farm Practice Selection

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  • Hayley H. Chouinard
  • Tobias Paterson
  • Philip R. Wandschneider
  • Adrienne M. Ohler
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    Abstract

    We investigate the trade-off agricultural producers face between profits and stewardly activities when selecting farm practices. Instead of the profit-maximization framework, we model producer behavior in an expanded utility framework, built on production technology, and including two utility components: self and social interests. The framework introduces inherent heterogeneity and social/environmental motivations into farmer behavior. Based on this model, we hypothesize that there are farmers that are willing to forego some profit to engage in stewardly farm practices. With an empirical study, we provide evidence that some farmers are willing to make this sacrifice. Results are consistent with the multi-utility hypothesis.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Land Economics.

    Volume (Year): 84 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 66-82

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    Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:84:y:2008:i:1:p:66-82

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    Cited by:
    1. Esperanza Vera-Toscano & Fernando Garrido-Fernández & José Gómez-Limón & José Cañadas-Reche, 2013. "Are Theories About Social Capital Empirically Supported? Evidence from the Farming Sector," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 114(3), pages 1331-1359, December.
    2. Mooney, Daniel F. & Barham, Bradford L. & Lian, Chang, 2013. "Sustainable Biofuels, Marginal Agricultural Lands, and Farm Supply Response: Micro-Evidence for Southwest Wisconsin," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150510, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    3. Steele, Scott R., 2009. "Expanding the solution set: Organizational economics and agri-environmental policy," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 398-405, December.
    4. Czap, Natalia V. & Czap, Hans J., 2010. "An experimental investigation of revealed environmental concern," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(10), pages 2033-2041, August.
    5. Lennox, Gareth D. & Gaston, Kevin J. & Acs, Szvetlana & Dallimer, Martin & Hanley, Nick & Armsworth, Paul R., 2013. "Conservation when landowners have bargaining power: Continuous conservation investments and cost uncertainty," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 69-78.
    6. Jean McGuire & Lois Morton & Alicia Cast, 2013. "Reconstructing the good farmer identity: shifts in farmer identities and farm management practices to improve water quality," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 57-69, March.
    7. Sarah Jacobson, 2010. "Temporal Spillovers in Land Conservation," Department of Economics Working Papers 2014-01, Department of Economics, Williams College, revised Feb 2014.
    8. Sauer, Johannes & Walsh, John & Zilberman, David, 2012. "Producer Behaviour and Agri-Environmental Policies: A Directional Distance based Matching Approach," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124877, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    9. Mzoughi, Naoufel, 2011. "Farmers adoption of integrated crop protection and organic farming: Do moral and social concerns matter?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(8), pages 1536-1545, June.
    10. Sauer, Johannes & Walsh, John & Zilberman, David, 2012. "Behavioural Change through Agri-Environmental Policies ? – A Distance Function based Matching Approach," 86th Annual Conference, April 16-18, 2012, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 134783, Agricultural Economics Society.
    11. Beretti, Antoine & Figuières, Charles & Grolleau, Gilles, 2013. "Behavioral innovations: The missing capital in sustainable development?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 187-195.
    12. Munasib, Abdul B.A. & Jordan, Jeffrey L., 2011. "The Effect of Social Capital on the Choice to Use Sustainable Agricultural Practices," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 43(02), May.
    13. Rick Welsh & Rebecca Rivers, 2011. "Environmental management strategies in agriculture," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer, vol. 28(3), pages 297-302, September.
    14. Gauntlett, William, 2009. "The Costs and Benefits of Effluent Management Compliance in the Waikato Region of New Zealand," 2009 Conference (53rd), February 11-13, 2009, Cairns, Australia 48032, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
    15. Sauer, Johannes & Walsh, John & Zilberman, David, 2013. "Agri-Environmental Policy Effects at Producer Level - Identification and Measurement," 53rd Annual Conference, Berlin, Germany, September 25-27, 2013 156099, German Association of Agricultural Economists (GEWISOLA).
    16. Czap, Natalia V. & Czap, Hans J. & Khachaturyan, Marianna & Lynne, Gary D. & Burbach, Mark, 2012. "Walking in the shoes of others: Experimental testing of dual-interest and empathy in environmental choice," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(5), pages 642-653.
    17. Armsworth, Paul R & Banerjee, Simanti & Hanley, Nicholas & Lennox, Gareth D, 2012. "How should we incentivize private landowners to "produce" more biodive rsity?," Stirling Economics Discussion Papers 2012-02, University of Stirling, Division of Economics.
    18. Mooney, Daniel F. & Barham, Bradford L., 2013. "What Drives the Adoption of Clean Agricultural Technologies? An Ex Ante Assessment of Sustainable Biofuel Production in Southwestern Wisconsin," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150557, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    19. Clark P. Bishop & C. Richard Shumway & Philip R. Wandschneider, 2008. "Agent Heterogeneity in Adoption of Anaerobic Digestion Technology: Integrating Economic, Diffusion and Behavioral Innovation Theory," Working Papers 2008-8, School of Economic Sciences, Washington State University.
    20. Sulemana, Iddisah & James, Harvey S., 2014. "Farmer identity, ethical attitudes and environmental practices," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 49-61.
    21. Sauer, Johannes & Wossink, Ada, 2010. "The Marginal Cost Of Agri-Environmental Services," 50st Annual Conference, Braunschweig, Germany, September 29-October 1, 2010 93939, German Association of Agricultural Economists (GEWISOLA).

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