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Agricultural extension system reform and agent time allocation in China


  • HU, Ruifa
  • YANG, Zhijian
  • KELLY, Peter
  • HUANG, Jikun


We conducted a nationally representative survey to measure the impact of China's institutional reforms in public agricultural extension on the time allocation of its one million agricultural extension agents. We found that Chinese agents spent much less time than their titles would suggest on providing agricultural extension services, and that agents whose base salaries were funded fully or partially by commercial activities spent substantially less time serving farmers. The institutional incentives associated with the source of funding have a much larger effect on agent time allocation than do the levels of funding. We conclude that the recent government policy to separate commercial activities from extension services is a step in the right direction and should be expanded. The results also suggest that, at least for agricultural extension, the goal of many national governments and international donors to develop locally financing institutions to sustain development projects may be misguided.

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  • HU, Ruifa & YANG, Zhijian & KELLY, Peter & HUANG, Jikun, 2009. "Agricultural extension system reform and agent time allocation in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 303-315, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:20:y:2009:i:2:p:303-315

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jikun Huang & Fangbin Qiao & Linxiu Zhang & Scott Rozelle, 2000. "Farm Pesticide, Rice Production, and Human Health," EEPSEA Research Report rr2000051, Economy and Environment Program for Southeast Asia (EEPSEA), revised May 2000.
    2. Zhang, Xiaobo, 2006. "Fiscal decentralization and political centralization in China: Implications for growth and inequality," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 713-726, December.
    3. Jock R. Anderson, 2004. "Agricultural Extension: Good Intentions and Hard Realities," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 19(1), pages 41-60.
    4. Michael Kremer & Edward Miguel, 2007. "The Illusion of Sustainability," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1007-1065.
    5. Jonathan Morduch, 1999. "The Microfinance Promise," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1569-1614, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ding, Shijun & Meriluoto, Laura & Reed, W. Robert & Tao, Dayun & Wu, Haitao, 2011. "The impact of agricultural technology adoption on income inequality in rural China: Evidence from southern Yunnan Province," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 344-356, September.
    2. Pranay VERMA & Neena SINHA, 2016. "Technology Acceptance Model Revisited For Mobile Based Agricultural Extension Services In India," Management Research and Practice, Research Centre in Public Administration and Public Services, Bucharest, Romania, vol. 8(4), pages 29-38, December.
    3. Hu, Ruifa & Cai, Yaqing & Chen, Kevin Z. & Huang, Jikun, 2012. "Effects of inclusive public agricultural extension service: Results from a policy reform experiment in western China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 962-974.
    4. Yamada, Nanae & Sui, Shuyan, 2013. "Response of local producers to agro-food port rejection : the case of Chinese vegetable exports," IDE Discussion Papers 390, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
    5. Weber, Daniela, 2011. "Agri-environmental attitudes of Chinese farmers – The impact of social and cognitive determinants," 85th Annual Conference, April 18-20, 2011, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 108964, Agricultural Economics Society.
    6. Huang, Jikun & Huang, Zhurong & Jia, Xiangping & Hu, Ruifa & Xiang, Cheng, 2015. "Long-term reduction of nitrogen fertilizer use through knowledge training in rice production in China," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 135(C), pages 105-111.
    7. Wang, Xiaobing & Hockmann, Heinrich, 2012. "Technical Efficiency Under Producer’S Individual Technology: A Metafrontier Analysis," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126755, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Shijun Ding & Laura Meriluoto & W. Robert Reed & Daoyun Tao & Haitao Wu, 2010. "The Impact of Agricultural Technology Adoption of Income Inequality in Rural China," Working Papers in Economics 10/41, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
    9. JIA, Xiangping & HUANG, Jikun & XU, Zhigang, 2012. "Marketing of farmer professional cooperatives in the wave of transformed agrofood market in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 665-674.
    10. Dan Pan, 2014. "The Impact of Agricultural Extension on Farmer Nutrient Management Behavior in Chinese Rice Production: A Household-Level Analysis," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 6(10), pages 1-22, September.
    11. Chen, Ruijian & Huang, Jikun & Qiao, Fangbin, 2013. "Farmers' knowledge on pest management and pesticide use in Bt cotton production in china," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 15-24.
    12. Bin Wu & Liyan Zhang, 2013. "Farmer innovation diffusion via network building: a case of winter greenhouse diffusion in China," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 30(4), pages 641-651, December.
    13. repec:spr:endesu:v:19:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s10668-016-9765-z is not listed on IDEAS


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