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Why do farmers not convert to organic farming? Modeling conversion to organic farming as a major change

Abstract : This study aims to better understand why farmers do not convert to organic farming by studying decision trajectories in a dynamic agent‐based model. In this model, an agent's decision on transitioning to organic is based on the comparison between satisfaction with its current situation and potential satisfaction with an alternative farming strategy. A farmer's satisfaction was modeled by borrowing from the Theory of Reasoned Action and computed by comparing the farmer's performance over time against the farming practices of other farmers to which he/she lends great credibility ("important others"). Analysis identified five different reasons why a farmer does not change strategy. Three are due to satisfaction or recovered satisfaction with the current situation. The conversion to organic farming is effectively a major change and cannot be envisaged if the farmer is currently satisfied. Satisfaction can be recovered when evaluation by the farmer or "important others" finds an improvement of the current situation. A farmer's decision to not convert can also be due to negative evaluations of organic farming by "important others," or to dissatisfaction with the current situation being too transient to prompt the effort to convert.
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Submitted on : Saturday, May 16, 2020 - 2:30:15 PM
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Qing Xu, Sylvie Huet, Christophe Poix, Isabelle Boisdon, Guillaume Deffuant. Why do farmers not convert to organic farming? Modeling conversion to organic farming as a major change. Natural Resource Modeling, Rocky Mountain Mathematics Consortium, 2018, 31 (3), pp.e12171. ⟨10.1111/nrm.12171⟩. ⟨hal-02063212⟩



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