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Using a Choice Experiment to Estimate Farmers’ Valuation of Agrobiodiversity on Hungarian Small Farms


  • Ekin Birol


  • Melinda Smale
  • Ágnes Gyovai


Agrobiodiversity is a crucial environmental resource. Much of the agrobiodiversity remaining in situ today is found on the semi-subsistence farms of poorer countries and the small-scale farms or home gardens of more industrialised nations. The traditional farms of Hungary are an example. Labelled “home gardens” as a reflection of their institutional identity during the collectivisation period, they are micro-agroecosystems that provide important functions such as food security and diet quality. This paper applies the choice experiment method to estimate the private benefits farmers derive from four components of the agrobiodiversity found in Hungarian home gardens: richness of crop varieties and fruit trees; crop landraces; integrated crop and livestock production; and soil micro-organism diversity. The analysis is based on primary data collected in three environmentally sensitive areas where pilot agri-environmental programmes have been initiated as part of the Hungarian National Rural Development Plan. Findings demonstrate variation in the private values of home gardens and their attributes across households and regions, contributing to understanding the potential role of home gardens in these agri-environmental schemes. This study has implications for sustaining agrobiodiversity in transitional economies. Copyright Springer 2006

Suggested Citation

  • Ekin Birol & Melinda Smale & Ágnes Gyovai, 2006. "Using a Choice Experiment to Estimate Farmers’ Valuation of Agrobiodiversity on Hungarian Small Farms," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 34(4), pages 439-469, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:enreec:v:34:y:2006:i:4:p:439-469
    DOI: 10.1007/s10640-006-0009-9

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Michael Grossman, 1999. "The Human Capital Model of the Demand for Health," NBER Working Papers 7078, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Farsi, Mehdi, 2010. "Risk aversion and willingness to pay for energy efficient systems in rental apartments," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(6), pages 3078-3088, June.
    2. Girma T. Kassie & Awudu Abdulai & Clemens Wollny, 2009. "Valuing Traits of Indigenous Cows in Central Ethiopia," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(2), pages 386-401.
    3. Mariel, Petr & Ayala, Amaya de & Hoyos, David & Abdullah, Sabah, 2013. "Selecting random parameters in discrete choice experiment for environmental valuation: A simulation experiment," Journal of choice modelling, Elsevier, vol. 7(C), pages 44-57.
    4. Nastis, Stefanos A. & Michailidis, Anastasios & Mattas, Konstadinos, 2011. "Crop biodiversity repercussions of subsidized organic farming in Greece," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114628, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    5. Tienhaara, Annika & Ahtiainen, Heini & Pouta, Eija, 2015. "Consumer and citizen roles and motives in the valuation of agricultural genetic resources in Finland," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 1-10.
    6. Kermagoret, Charlène & Levrel, Harold & Carlier, Antoine & Dachary-Bernard, Jeanne, 2016. "Individual preferences regarding environmental offset and welfare compensation: a choice experiment application to an offshore wind farm project," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 129(C), pages 230-240.
    7. Tait, Peter & Baskaran, Ramesh & Cullen, Ross & Bicknell, Kathryn, 2012. "Nonmarket valuation of water quality: Addressing spatially heterogeneous preferences using GIS and a random parameter logit model," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 15-21.
    8. Balderas Torres, Arturo & MacMillan, Douglas C. & Skutsch, Margaret & Lovett, Jon C., 2015. "Reprint of ‘Yes-in-my-backyard’: Spatial differences in the valuation of forest services and local co-benefits for carbon markets in México," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 283-294.
    9. Balderas Torres, Arturo & MacMillan, Douglas C. & Skutsch, Margaret & Lovett, Jon C., 2015. "‘Yes-in-my-backyard’: Spatial differences in the valuation of forest services and local co-benefits for carbon markets in México," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 130-141.
    10. Kipperberg, Gorm & Bond, Craig A. & Hoag, Dana L., 2008. "An Application of Mixed Logit Estimation in the Analysis of Producers’ Stated Preferences," Working Papers 108719, Colorado State University, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    11. repec:eee:ecolec:v:137:y:2017:i:c:p:99-109 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Waldman, Kurt B. & Ortega, David L. & Richardson, Robert B. & Snapp, Sieglinde S., 2017. "Estimating demand for perennial pigeon pea in Malawi using choice experiments," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 131(C), pages 222-230.


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