Public Preferences Regarding the Goals of Farmland Preservation Programs
Farmland preservation programs exist in all states. Most programs pursue agricultural objectives, such as preserving productive soils and viable farms. However, in some states the public may believe that programs should pursue broader goals often associated with preserving open space. Focus groups and a survey of Rhode Island residents provide information and data for factor analysis of preferences regarding farmland preservation goals. A system of structural equations (LISREL model) is used to examine differences in preferences among residents across socioeconomic categories. Results suggest that broadening the scope of farmland preservation programs to address environmental goals may increase public benefits.
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