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ERIC Number: EJ1171995
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1389-224X
Are All Young Farmers the Same? An Exploratory Analysis of On-Farm Innovation on Dairy and Drystock Farms in the Republic of Ireland
McKillop, Jessica; Heanue, Kevin; Kinsella, Jim
Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension, v24 n2 p137-151 2018
Purpose: Research on young farmers traditionally focused on the future of the agricultural sector or else compared the innovativeness, efficiency or entrepreneurialism of young to older farmers. By contrast, this paper examines the differences in innovation within young farmers. Methodology: Innovativeness is defined here as the adoption of processes and practices more likely to result in higher farm performance and profitability. Using Principal Component Analysis, an innovation profile of young farmers in the Republic of Ireland is developed. The profile identifies themes of grassland, financial and breeding management practices. Findings: The results demonstrate the differences between actual on-farm innovation by young farmers and what would be considered 'important' by subject matter specialists. Young farmers were found to differ in their innovativeness score, which was related to different areas of farm management, whether that was overall efficiency, breeding, information technology or performance monitoring. Theoretical Implications: Given the relatively low numbers of young farmers in many European countries including Ireland, research and extension organisations can develop programmes, tailor discussion groups and focus subject learning to particular types of young farmers instead of the current generalised approach, which fails to differentiate their interests from those of the older generation. Agricultural education providers need to consider these differences to ensure comprehensive and focused course programming to stimulate innovation. Originality: This paper adds value to young farmer research as it focuses within the young farmer population in contrast to the traditional view of old farmers compared to young farmers and innovation.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Ireland
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A