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Article
Publication date: 12 January 2022

Wei Zhang

The purpose of this review article is to demonstrate how the quasi-experimental approach has been used to study environmental and natural resource issues related to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this review article is to demonstrate how the quasi-experimental approach has been used to study environmental and natural resource issues related to agricultural production.

Design/methodology/approach

This review article first provides a short introduction to the quasi-experimental approach using the potential outcomes framework and then uses studies on the environmental sustainability of agricultural production to illustrate how quasi-experimental methods have been applied. Papers reviewed consist of studies that estimate the environmental externalities from agricultural production, evaluate agri-environmental and other related policies and programs, and demonstrate issues related to on-farm resource use and climate adaptation.

Findings

Difference-in-differences (DID) and two-way fixed effects methods that utilize the spatial and temporal variation in panel data are widely used to estimate the causal impact of changes in agricultural production and policy on the environment. Utilizing the discontinuities and limits created by agricultural policies and regulations, local treatment effects on land and other input use are estimated using regression discontinuity (RD) or instrumental variable (IV) methods with cross-sectional data.

Originality/value

Challenges faced by the food systems have made agricultural sustainability more critical than ever. Over the past three decades, the quasi-experimental approach has become the powerhouse of applied economic research. This review article focuses on quasi-experimental studies on the environmental sustainability of agriculture to provide methodological insights and to highlight gaps in the economics literature of agricultural sustainability.

Details

China Agricultural Economic Review, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1756-137X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 28 December 2020

Joko Mariyono, Hanik Anggraeni Dewi, Putu Bagus Daroini, Evy Latifah, Arief Lukman Hakim and Gregory C. Luther

A research and development project disseminated ecological technologies to approximately 3,250 vegetable farmers through farmer field schools (FFS) in four districts of…

Abstract

Purpose

A research and development project disseminated ecological technologies to approximately 3,250 vegetable farmers through farmer field schools (FFS) in four districts of Bali and East Java provinces of Indonesia. This article aims to assess the economic sustainability of vegetable production after FFS participation.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey randomly sampled 500 farmers, comprised of FFS participants (50%) and non-FFS participants (50%). Based on 1,000 farm operations, this analysis employed input-saving technology as the fundamental model examined using the double-difference method. Simultaneous reduction of agrochemicals and improvement of productivity represent indicators of economic sustainability.

Findings

Results indicate that pesticide use decreased without jeopardising farm productivity; moreover, vegetable production increased. These findings indicate that the ecological technologies transferred through FFS significantly improved economic sustainability performance.

Research limitations/implications

This study purposively selected farmers who grew tomato and chilli. Thus, the outcomes are not generalisable to other crops.

Practical implications

FFS continues to be an effective method for transferring agricultural technologies to farmer communities. Policymakers are recommended to use FFS for disseminating beneficial and sustainable technologies to broader agricultural communities.

Social implications

The adoption of ecological technologies provides positive economic and ecological milieus.

Originality/value

This study employs a double-differences approach to verify input-saving technological progress. Therefore, the performance of economic sustainability attributable to the project intervention is theoretically justified.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 1 February 2021

David M. Blodgett and Marjorie N. Feld

The sustainability of the global food system hinges on its environmental resiliency and safety, including the health and well-being of its labor force. Single disciplinary…

Abstract

Purpose

The sustainability of the global food system hinges on its environmental resiliency and safety, including the health and well-being of its labor force. Single disciplinary courses in liberal arts or science often fail to highlight the overlap between environmental and social vulnerabilities that lead to food insecurity and diminish the sustainability of food systems. This paper aims to present the design and delivery of a successfully co-taught, interdisciplinary module on agricultural labor and sustainable food systems as a case study.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors designed a co-taught module in which they joined each other’s respective history and science class sessions at the undergraduate business college where they teach. Innovating the cross-disciplinary content of food security, immigration status, labor exploitation and pesticide exposure, they approached sustainability from the disciplinary perspectives of labor history and environmental science to show how these elements had both unique and overlapping impacts across food systems levels. Comparisons between pre- and post-module survey responses, alongside assessments of a co-authored exam question, measured the effectiveness of this module is changing students’ perspectives as food consumers and as citizens.

Findings

This module altered students’ understanding and perspectives around issues of food systems sustainability. Assessments indicated that students increased their awareness of agricultural workers at the front end of the food system, during production; students also gained awareness beyond consumption as they came to see the connections between workforce invisibility and ecosystem degradation.

Originality/value

These insights are valuable to educators at all institutional levels who seek to collaborate on sustainability initiatives and teaching, both in the singular, robust modules and in building modules that will lead to the development of entire courses focused on sustainability. The module described here builds on previous demonstrations of the value, significance and effectiveness of cross-disciplinary collaborations; it pioneers the use of the food system as the link between social and environmental sustainability education.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 16 November 2012

Florian Lüdeke‐Freund, David Walmsley, Mirco Plath, Jan Wreesmann and Alexandra‐Maria Klein

This article seeks to address aviation as an emerging biofuel consumer and to discuss sustainability issues and consequences for feedstock production concepts. Biojet…

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Abstract

Purpose

This article seeks to address aviation as an emerging biofuel consumer and to discuss sustainability issues and consequences for feedstock production concepts. Biojet fuels have been identified as a promising, readily deployable alternative to fossil‐based aviation fuels. At the same time they are highly criticised as their production may have negative social and environmental impacts. Therefore, the paper aims to identify major sustainability issues and assessment challenges and relate these to the production of biojet fuel feedstock.

Design/methodology/approach

Two plant oil production concepts are presented that address the sustainability issues discussed. Both concepts are being investigated within the research project “Platform for Sustainable Aviation Fuels”. A literature‐based overview of sustainability issues and assessment challenges is provided. Additionally, conceptual insights into new plant oil production concepts are presented.

Findings

The use of biojet fuels is often hailed as a strategy for the aviation industry to become more sustainable. However, biofuels are not necessarily sustainable and their potential to reduce GHG emissions is highly debated. Several unresolved sustainability issues are identified highlighting the need for improved assessment methods. Moreover, the two concepts presented have the potential to provide sustainably grown feedstock, but further empirical research is needed.

Originality/value

This article addresses researchers and practitioners by providing an overview of sustainability issues and assessment challenges related to biojet fuels. Consequences are identified for two plant oil feedstock concepts: catch cropping in temperate regions and silvopastoral systems in tropical and subtropical regions.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 13 September 2021

Alex Bignotti, Alex J. Antonites and Uapirama J. Kavari

Entrepreneurship is increasingly being recognised as a vehicle for bringing about the development of different economic sectors in various geographical regions, and it is…

Abstract

Purpose

Entrepreneurship is increasingly being recognised as a vehicle for bringing about the development of different economic sectors in various geographical regions, and it is believed to result in greater productivity and entrepreneurial performance in agriculture. To date, there are no empirically verified holistic models focussing on the development of agricultural entrepreneurship in an African context. This study aims to fill this gap by developing an agricultural entrepreneurial development model (AEDM) that provides a basis for enhancing entrepreneurial performance in the agriculture sector.

Design/methodology/approach

First, a holistic conceptual AEDM was built from the extant literature with a focus on the African context and encompassing dimension of the enabling environment, entrepreneurial performance and its outcomes. Then, the model was tested empirically by conducting a survey with 477 farmers in Namibia who benefit from Namibia’s National Resettlement Programme and the Affirmative Action Loan Scheme. The model was tested statistically using partial least square-structural equation modelling.

Findings

The results reveal that a supportive environment, entrepreneurial orientation and agricultural sustainability exert a positive impact on entrepreneurial performance in agriculture, which, in turn, leads to greater agricultural productivity and increased income for farmers.

Originality/value

The study theoretically develops and empirically tests a holistic model of agricultural entrepreneurship development. The value of the model lies in its consideration of a plethora of enabling-environment antecedents of entrepreneurial performance in agriculture, as well as some specific organisational- and individual-level outcomes thereof. Therefore, it offers policymakers and practitioners a blueprint for developing agricultural entrepreneurship in an African context.

Details

Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, vol. 15 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6204

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2019

Juhadi Juhadi, Eva Banowati, Tjaturahono Budi Sanjoto and Satya Budi Nugraha

The purpose of this paper is to assess the land utilization in the erosion and landslide vulnerable mountainous region using the Rapid Appraisal for Agricultural Land…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the land utilization in the erosion and landslide vulnerable mountainous region using the Rapid Appraisal for Agricultural Land Utilization (RApALU) model.

Design/methodology/approach

A multidimensional RApALU model is used for sustainable agriculture land utilization.

Findings

Ecological dimension was less sustainable, whereas socio-economic, socio-cultural, and eco-technological dimensions were comparatively more sustainable. It was found from the analysis that 9 out of 21 attributes have sensitive effect on the sustainability index and status.

Practical implications

One of the implications of this research is that this model could be used to quickly measure the arrangement of an area that is experiencing environmental problems so that the land use planning process could be done more effectively and efficiently. The parameters used in each variable could be chosen by the researchers themselves according to location. As far as known by the researcher, the methods used have not been well integrated, they are still separated, for example, only physical problems, and social problems have not been measured properly. This model is not perfect yet, and it could be developed further because environmental problems are very complex and could be different from one location to another.

Originality/value

RApALU analysis can be used as preliminary analysis to comprehend general and overall description on the status of the sustainability index of land utilization for agriculture in hilly mountainous regions. The study confirmed that RApALU analysis can help determine the status of the sustainability of land utilization in intricate areas. This technique was able to comprehensively identify important factors affecting sustainability status of various dimensions.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 31 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 3 December 2014

Jason Konefal, Maki Hatanaka and Douglas H. Constance

Efforts to increase sustainability are increasingly being promulgated using non-state forms of governance. Currently, there are multiple multi-stakeholder initiatives…

Abstract

Efforts to increase sustainability are increasingly being promulgated using non-state forms of governance. Currently, there are multiple multi-stakeholder initiatives (MSIs) working to develop sustainability standards and metrics for US agriculture. These include: LEO-4000, Field to Market, and the Sustainability Consortium. Using Paul Thompson’s (2010) tripartite sustainability framework, the proposed sustainability standards and metrics of the three MSIs are assessed. Our findings indicate that the current political economic stakeholder nexus is producing incremental adjustments to the status quo of industrial agriculture. Put differently, the standards and metrics being produced by these initiatives are largely advancing programs of sustainable intensification in which sustainability is equated with increasing resource efficiencies. Hence, our research problematizes the efficacy of non-state governance approaches for transformative change in food and agriculture. The findings in this chapter are based on fieldwork conducted between 2011 and 2013.

Details

Alternative Agrifood Movements: Patterns of Convergence and Divergence
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-089-6

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 4 March 2020

Huy Duc Dang

Agricultural systems in Mekong Delta have transformed to cope with climate change. Various researches pointed out that integrated agriculture-aquaculture (IAA) farming…

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3279

Abstract

Purpose

Agricultural systems in Mekong Delta have transformed to cope with climate change. Various researches pointed out that integrated agriculture-aquaculture (IAA) farming systems (i.e., rice-shrimp, rice-fish…) emerged as potential climate adaptive practices. However, limited studies are attempting to assess the sustainability of these agricultural practices. Therefore, it is essential to assess whether or not these systems will be sustainable in the context of climate change and what can be done to make it sustainable. The present study conducted the sustainability assessment of the rice-shrimp system to identify potential areas for improvement as well as policy implication to increase resilience and adaptation of coastal IAA system which could contribute to the understanding of other coastal agricultural deltas around the globe.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used a quantitative approach including the assessment protocol of van Asselt et al. (2014), the assessment framework of Vanloon et al. (2005), and the MCA methodology to flexibly and holistically assess the sustainability level of agricultural systems.

Findings

Results concluded that rice-shrimp systems have the potential to improve livelihood, food security, and adaptation of coastal farmers. Major improvements should be considered for productivity, efficiency, and equity themes, while minor improvements can be made for stability, durability, and compatibility themes.

Originality/value

This research could be used as a guideline for sustainability assessment in a context-specific case study of IAA, which showed a potential for the application of other climate-smart IAAs in similar contexts around the globe.

Details

Journal of Economics and Development, vol. 22 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1859-0020

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 31 December 2010

Siham El‐Kafafi and Stephen Liddle

It is argued that as the planets conventional natural resources are consumed, it has a profound effect on society and the environment. In order to maintain current levels…

Abstract

It is argued that as the planets conventional natural resources are consumed, it has a profound effect on society and the environment. In order to maintain current levels of lifestyle, help solve some of the developing nation’s problems and ultimately survive, the world will look more to technology and science for the answers and this will call for partnerships that deliver new approaches and science‐based innovations (Teresko, 2006). This research is a part of a bigger study investigating the determinants of innovation in the New Zealand biotechnology sector. This paper discusses business innovation in general and how it could contribute to sustainable development across several key areas like agriculture, biotechnology, consumer products, energy and life sciences. To provide a link between business innovation and sustainability, the research paper explores trends across the following concepts: social expectations of innovation in the biotechnology field, innovations versus sustainability, sustainable agricultural biotechnology, and sustainable industry practices in the biotechnology field. Finally the paper provides some tentative ideas of the conditions required for business innovation to make a constructive contribution to sustainability.

Details

World Journal of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development, vol. 6 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-5961

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 11 April 2012

Reidar Almås and Hugh Campbell

Purpose – This chapter introduces the book collection and sets the theoretical framework for the subsequent chapters.Design/methodology/approach – The approach of the book…

Abstract

Purpose – This chapter introduces the book collection and sets the theoretical framework for the subsequent chapters.

Design/methodology/approach – The approach of the book is to re-interpret major challenges to global agriculture – particularly climate change and the food crisis of 2008 – as demonstrating shocks to the resilience of global food systems.

Findings – Using resilience to shocks as a key quality of food systems enables recent crises to be understood as central to the ongoing dynamics of food systems rather than simply atypical events. Alongside climate change and food security, other potential shocks are identified: biosecurity, energy, financial and volcanic.

Originality/value – This framework establishes new criteria for examining the potential merit of multifunctional and neo-liberal policy regimes with world food systems.

Details

Rethinking Agricultural Policy Regimes: Food Security, Climate Change and the Future Resilience of Global Agriculture
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-349-1

Keywords

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