IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Policies to support economic and environmental goals at farm and regional scales: Outcomes for rice farmers in Southern India depend on their resource endowment

Listed author(s):
  • Senthilkumar, K.
  • Lubbers, M.T.M.H.
  • de Ridder, N.
  • Bindraban, P.S.
  • Thiyagarajan, T.M.
  • Giller, K.E.
Registered author(s):

    Improving water use and nitrogen efficiencies is of overall importance to society at large - to conserve scarce water resources and prevent environmental pollution. Efficient cultivation practices for rice which had no yield penalty were not adopted by farmers because of the open access to water free of charge. Well-chosen combinations of policy measures are thus needed to stimulate adoption of new cultivation practices. We developed a multi-objective linear programming (MGLP) model to explore the impact of: (i) modified rice cultivation including water-saving irrigation on farm profit; (ii) water pricing and water quota government policies on adoption of modified rice cultivation by farmers; (iii) a combination of (i) and (ii) to achieve the objectives of both farmers and society at large, and (iv) to study the trade-offs between income, water and nitrogen use. The analysis was carried out on four rice-based farm types for the state of Tamil Nadu, South India. Model results showed that observed farm profit of all four farm types could be increased using current practices simply by optimizing land use for specific crops. Adoption of modified rice cultivation further increased farm profit. Water-saving practices were selected only when water pricing was introduced. Farm profits were reduced even at low water prices but were compensated by farmers through adoption of modified rice cultivation. The combination of policies that stimulate adoption of modified rice cultivation was effective in achieving both increased farm income and water savings. The required water prices differed across farm types and seasons and impacted poor resource-endowed farmers the most. Providing water quotas could protect the poor resource-endowed farmers. The model helped to identify the optimal water price and water quota for each farm type to achieve both the objectives of farmers and society at large. Opportunities for reducing water use and avoiding environmental pollution at acceptable profits are available for all farm types, but need to be tailored to the farmers' resource endowments.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Agricultural Systems.

    Volume (Year): 104 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 1 (January)
    Pages: 82-93

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:eee:agisys:v:104:y:2011:i:1:p:82-93
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    in new window

    1. Senthilkumar, K. & Bindraban, P.S. & Thiyagarajan, T.M. & de Ridder, N. & Giller, K.E., 2008. "Modified rice cultivation in Tamil Nadu, India: Yield gains and farmers' (lack of) acceptance," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 98(2), pages 82-94, September.
    2. Hengsdijk, H. & van Ittersum, M. K., 2002. "A goal-oriented approach to identify and engineer land use systems," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 71(3), pages 231-247, March.
    3. van Ittersum, M. K. & Rabbinge, R. & van Latesteijn, H. C., 1998. "Exploratory land use studies and their role in strategic policy making," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 309-330, November.
    4. Kropff, M. J. & Bouma, J. & Jones, J. W., 2001. "Systems approaches for the design of sustainable agro-ecosystems," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 70(2-3), pages 369-393.
    5. Senthilkumar, K. & Bindraban, P.S. & de Boer, W. & de Ridder, N. & Thiyagarajan, T.M. & Giller, K.E., 2009. "Characterising rice-based farming systems to identify opportunities for adopting water efficient cultivation methods in Tamil Nadu, India," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 96(12), pages 1851-1860, December.
    6. Kruseman, Gideon & Bade, Jan, 1998. "Agrarian policies for sustainable land use: bio-economic modelling to assess the effectiveness of policy instruments," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 465-481, November.
    7. de Wit, C. T. & van Keulen, H. & Seligman, N. G. & Spharim, I., 1988. "Application of interactive multiple goal programming techniques for analysis and planning of regional agricultural development," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 211-230.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:agisys:v:104:y:2011:i:1:p:82-93. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.