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Rice farming systems in Southern Lao PDR: Interpreting farmers’ agricultural production decisions using Q methodology

Author

Listed:
  • Alexander, Kim S.
  • Parry, Lucy
  • Thammavong, Phomma
  • Sacklokham, Silinthone
  • Pasouvang, Somphanh
  • Connell, John G.
  • Jovanovic, Tom
  • Moglia, Magnus
  • Larson, Silva
  • Case, Peter

Abstract

The agricultural sector in Lao PDR is forecast to move from subsistence rice production to a more modernized and market-oriented sector with greater focus on commercialization of agricultural production. Intensification of agricultural production in the southern and central rice growing regions of Lao PDR is problematic as dryland farmers rely on rainfall and soils are poor, yet rural households have been experiencing rapid change in their farming and livelihood systems. This paper employs Q methodology techniques to explore 35 farmers' viewpoints when contemplating their production goals and potential to adopt technologies to improve productivity. Findings describe the two emerging viewpoints among farmers as ‘labour saving productivity maximization’ and ‘traditional labour productivity using improved techniques’. The two viewpoints describe the different issues currently guiding production decisions. While the Lao Government forecasts substantial increases in rice production in the southern plains, farmers will require specialized and tailored support, accounting for their envisaged livelihood and production goals, to allow the sector transformation that many stakeholders currently envisage.

Suggested Citation

  • Alexander, Kim S. & Parry, Lucy & Thammavong, Phomma & Sacklokham, Silinthone & Pasouvang, Somphanh & Connell, John G. & Jovanovic, Tom & Moglia, Magnus & Larson, Silva & Case, Peter, 2018. "Rice farming systems in Southern Lao PDR: Interpreting farmers’ agricultural production decisions using Q methodology," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 160(C), pages 1-10.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:agisys:v:160:y:2018:i:c:p:1-10
    DOI: 10.1016/j.agsy.2017.10.018
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    2. Valdemar J. Wesz Junior & Simone Piras & Catia Grisa & Stefano Ghinoi, 2021. "Assessing Brazilian agri-food policies: what impact on family farms?," Papers 2105.14996, arXiv.org.
    3. Chengji Han & Guogang Wang & Yongxiang Zhang & Lili Song & Lizhi Zhu, 2020. "Analysis of the temporal and spatial evolution characteristics and influencing factors of China’s herbivorous animal husbandry industry," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 15(8), pages 1-14, August.
    4. Jianfei Shen & Erli Dan & Yalin Lu & Yiwei Guo, 2021. "Exploratory Research on Overfertilization in Grain Production and Its Relationship with Financial Factors: Evidence from China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 13(4), pages 1-19, February.
    5. Nhem, Sareth & Lee, Young Jin, 2019. "Using Q methodology to investigate the views of local experts on the sustainability of community-based forestry in Oddar Meanchey province, Cambodia," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 1-1.
    6. Lairez, Juliette & Lopez-Ridaura, Santiago & Jourdain, Damien & Falconnier, Gatien N. & Lienhard, Pascal & Striffler, Bruno & Syfongxay, Chanthaly & Affholder, François, 2020. "Context matters: Agronomic field monitoring and participatory research to identify criteria of farming system sustainability in South-East Asia," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 182(C).
    7. Magnus Moglia & Kim S. Alexander & Silva Larson & Anne (Giger)-Dray & Garry Greenhalgh & Phommath Thammavong & Manithaythip Thephavanh & Peter Case, 2020. "Gendered Roles in Agrarian Transition: A Study of Lowland Rice Farming in Lao PDR," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(13), pages 1-20, July.
    8. Moglia, Magnus & Alexander, Kim S. & Thephavanh, Manithaythip & Thammavong, Phomma & Sodahak, Viengkham & Khounsy, Bountom & Vorlasan, Sysavanh & Larson, Silva & Connell, John & Case, Peter, 2018. "A Bayesian network model to explore practice change by smallholder rice farmers in Lao PDR," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 164(C), pages 84-94.
    9. Barbosa, Roseli Azambuja & Domingues, Carla Heloisa de Faria & Silva, Marcelo Corrêa da & Foguesatto, Cristian Rogério & Pereira, Mariana de Aragão & Gimenes, Régio Marcio Toesca & Borges, João August, 2020. "Using Q-methodology to identify rural women’s viewpoint on succession of family farms," Land Use Policy, Elsevier, vol. 92(C).
    10. Kim S. Alexander & Garry Greenhalgh & Magnus Moglia & Manithaythip Thephavanh & Phonevilay Sinavong & Silva Larson & Tom Jovanovic & Peter Case, 2020. "What is technology adoption? Exploring the agricultural research value chain for smallholder farmers in Lao PDR," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 37(1), pages 17-32, March.

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