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The Potential for Joint Farming Ventures in Irish Agriculture: A Sociological Review


  • Cush Peter


  • Macken-Walsh Áine

    () (Dr Peter Cush, Dr Áine Macken-Walsh, Teagasc Rural Economy and Development Programme (REDP), Athenry, Co. Galway, Ireland;)


Joint farming ventures (JFVs) are promoted within Irish and EU policy discourses as strategies that can enhance the economic and social sustainability of family farming. Research has shown that JFVs, including arrangements such as farm partnerships, contract rearing and share farming, can potentially enable farmers to work cooperatively to improve farm productivity, reduce working hours, facilitate succession, develop skills and improve relationships within the farm household. In the context of increasing policy promotion of JFVs, there is a need to make some attempt at understanding the macro socio-cultural disposition of family farming to cooperation. Reviewing sociological studies of agricultural cooperation and taking a specific focus on the Irish contextual backdrop, this paper draws the reader’s attention to the importance of historical legacy, pragmatic economic and social concerns, communicative norms, inter-personal relationships, individualism and, policy and extension stimuli, all of which shape farmers’ dispositions to cooperation and to JFVs specifically.

Suggested Citation

  • Cush Peter & Macken-Walsh Áine, 2016. "The Potential for Joint Farming Ventures in Irish Agriculture: A Sociological Review," European Countryside, Sciendo, vol. 8(1), pages 33-48, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:vrs:eurcou:v:8:y:2016:i:1:p:33-48:n:3

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Elinor Ostrom, 2010. "Analyzing collective action," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 41(s1), pages 155-166, November.
    2. Minh Ngo & Michael Brklacich, 2014. "New farmers’ efforts to create a sense of place in rural communities: insights from southern Ontario, Canada," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 31(1), pages 53-67, March.
    3. Stone, Thomas & Potsdam, Suny, 1996. "Creating moral economies: Reciprocity and welfare entitlements on the Yukon mining frontier," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 537-558.
    4. Tony Varley & Chris Curtin, 2006. "The Politics of Empowerment - Power, Populism and Partnership in Rural Ireland," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 37(3), pages 423-446.
    5. repec:cup:apsrev:v:85:y:1991:i:01:p:237-243_17 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Liam Kennedy, 1991. "Farm succession in modern Ireland: elements of a theory of inheritance," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 44(3), pages 477-499, August.
    7. Steven Emery, 2015. "Independence and individualism: conflated values in farmer cooperation?," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 32(1), pages 47-61, March.
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