ERIC Number: EJ1021377
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Abstractor: As Provided
Adoption of Soil Health Improvement Strategies by Australian Farmers: I. Attitudes, Management and Extension Implications
Bennett, J. McL.; Cattle, S. R.
Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension, v19 n4 p407-426 2013
Purpose: There is inconsistency in the design, understanding, implementation and monitoring of soil health programmes. Despite mounting scientific evidence for the credibility of certain soil health indicators, an increase in the reporting of programme benefits, and progress in communicating these benefits, many farmers remain hesitant to implement structured management plans and strategies tailored to address soil health. The purpose of this research is to investigate the proportion of Lachlan and Macquarie Valley landholders who implement a structured soil health programme and to better understand the role of extension in the management of these. Design: Non-parametric analysis of a mail-based survey supported with content analysis of landholder comments was used. Findings: Results suggests that the overall landholder attitude towards soil health management is positive, although soil health management programmes are often inconsistent, unstructured, or ad hoc. Ongoing communication between landholders, agronomists, extension agencies and scientists is shown to be vital in the adoption of soil health management programmes. Practical implication: By understanding landholder attitudes and management practices, as well as the role of extension, extension efforts can become more targeted and effective. Value: This article shows that soil health management is a primary focus of Australian farmers and elucidates the importance of extension efforts in management and planning. Areas where extension should be focussed are identified.
Descriptors: Foreign Countries, Agronomy, Agricultural Occupations, Attitudes, Adoption (Ideas), Soil Science, Conservation (Environment), Rural Extension, Agency Role, Planning, Group Membership, Workshops, Mail Surveys
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Publication Type: Reports - Research; Journal Articles
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A