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The Economics of Sustainable Land Management Practices in the Ethiopian Highlands

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  • Menale Kassie
  • Precious Zikhali
  • John Pender
  • Gunnar Köhlin

Abstract

This article uses data from household- and plot-level surveys conducted in the highlands of the Tigray and Amhara regions of Ethiopia. We examine the contribution of sustainable land management (SLM) practices to net value of agricultural production in areas with low vs. high agricultural potential. A combination of parametric and non-parametric estimation techniques is used to check result robustness. Both techniques consistently predict that minimum tillage (MT) is superior to commercial fertilisers (CFs), as are farmers' traditional practices (FTPs) without CFs, in enhancing crop productivity in the low agricultural potential areas. In the high agricultural potential areas, in contrast, use of CFs is superior to both MT and FTPs without CFs. The results are found to be insensitive to hidden bias. Our findings imply a need for careful agro-ecological targeting when developing, promoting and scaling up SLM practices. Copyright (c) 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation (c) 2010 The Agricultural Economics Society.

Suggested Citation

  • Menale Kassie & Precious Zikhali & John Pender & Gunnar Köhlin, 2010. "The Economics of Sustainable Land Management Practices in the Ethiopian Highlands," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 605-627.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jageco:v:61:y:2010:i:3:p:605-627
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Dercon, Stefan & Christiaensen, Luc, 2011. "Consumption risk, technology adoption and poverty traps: Evidence from Ethiopia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 159-173, November.
    2. Menale Kassie & John Pender & Mahmud Yesuf & Gunnar Kohlin & Randy Bluffstone & Elias Mulugeta, 2008. "Estimating returns to soil conservation adoption in the northern Ethiopian highlands," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 38(2), pages 213-232, March.
    3. A. Smith, Jeffrey & E. Todd, Petra, 2005. "Does matching overcome LaLonde's critique of nonexperimental estimators?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 305-353.
    4. Liane Faltermeier & Awudu Abdulai, 2009. "The impact of water conservation and intensification technologies: empirical evidence for rice farmers in Ghana," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 40(3), pages 365-379, May.
    5. Dercon, Stefan & Christiaensen, Luc, 2011. "Consumption risk, technology adoption and poverty traps: Evidence from Ethiopia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 159-173, November.
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