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ERIC Number: EJ952471
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jan
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0743-0167
The Influence of Perceptions of Practice Characteristics: An Examination of Agricultural Best Management Practice Adoption in Two Indiana Watersheds
Reimer, Adam P.; Weinkauf, Denise Klotthor; Prokopy, Linda Stalker
Journal of Rural Studies, v28 n1 p118-128 Jan 2012
Agricultural best management practices (BMPs), or conservation practices, can help reduce nonpoint source pollution from agricultural lands, as well as provide valuable wildlife habitat. There is a large literature exploring factors that lead to a producer's voluntary adoption of BMPs, but there have been inconsistent findings. Generally, this literature has not examined specific attributes of BMPs that may affect acceptability to farmers and ultimately adoption. To address these limitations, a qualitative analysis of in-depth interviews with farmers was conducted to determine which characteristics make four common BMPs more or less acceptable to agricultural producers. Interviews were conducted with forty-five producers in two watersheds in Indiana, USA. The producers were asked about their use of these conservation practices and the reasons behind their decisions. This study outlines the perceived characteristics of each conservation practice that are most important in either facilitating or impeding adoption of those practices. Results indicate that perceived high levels of relative advantage (e.g., reduced inputs, time-savings, and on-farm and environmental benefits), compatibility (with farm system and needs of producer), and observability (observing practice's advantages) are most important in increasing adoption of conservation practices. Low levels of perceived relative advantage and incompatibility of practices were found to be most important in non-adoption of conservation practices. Perceived risk and complexity associated with specific practices were only found to limit adoption for a few practices, though it was an important barrier for conservation tillage. In order to increase adoption, conservation promoters should focus on raising awareness of the on-farm and financial benefits, the environmental benefits, and compatibility of conservation practices with current farm operations. (Contains 2 figures and 6 tables.)
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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: Indiana