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Sustainability 2018, 10(1), 7; doi:10.3390/su10010007

Cultivated Land Use Benefits Under State and Collective Agrarian Property Regimes in China

1
College of Resources and Environment, Northeast Agricultural University, Harbin 150030, China
2
School of Public Administration, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan 430074, China
3
Department of Geography, Center for Environmental Sciences and Engineering, University of Connecticut, 215 Glenbrook Rd, Unit 4148, Storrs, CT 06269, USA
4
Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 24 October 2017 / Revised: 27 November 2017 / Accepted: 29 November 2017 / Published: 21 December 2017
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Abstract

Agrarian property regimes interact with relevant property stakeholders’ behaviors and benefits, playing a vital role in national and regional cultivated land use. In China, state and collective agrarian property regimes are the two main forms of cultivated land use. To help fully realize the multi-objectives of cultivated land use benefits provided by agrarian property regimes, our study investigated the relationship between agrarian property regimes and cultivated land use. This paper describes the role of a cultivated land use system in facilitating the relationship between agrarian property regimes and cultivated land use from a geographical perspective. Understanding the cultivated land use system is the foundation for comparatively analyzing differences in the cultivated land use benefits in two adjacent areas, a state-owned regime and a collective regime, in the city of Fujin, China, through a comprehensive evaluation. We found the following results: (1) The arrangement of agrarian property rights directly reflects capital, material and technology inputs by motivating agricultural labors to obtain different economic benefits; (2) The state agrarian property regime reflects top-down agricultural management while the collective agrarian property regime reflects bottom-up agricultural management in China. The different agricultural managements influence planting structure and land use planning, resulting in different ecological benefits; (3) Labor division and social insurance are the main drivers of different social benefits from the two regimes. Examining cultivated land use benefits provides a new comparative perspective for studying agrarian property regimes. The results show that cultivated land use benefits from collective and state agrarian property regimes are different. These findings clarify that, incentivized by the different types of agrarian property ownerships represented by collectively and state-owned regimes, local governments and organizations aim to achieve the multi-objective cultivated land use benefit goal of Chinese agricultural development, including economic, ecological and social benefits. With China’s goal of conducting moderate agricultural reform in its agrarian property regime, verification of rural collective land rights is an effective form of asset management in collective areas in China, while deepening land tenure and usufruct is an important priority in state-owned regimes. Furthermore, to make full use of agricultural resources, it is necessary to have a close collaboration between the collective agrarian property regime and the state agrarian property regime. View Full-Text
Keywords: agrarian property regime; cultivated land use benefits; state-owned area; collective area; China agrarian property regime; cultivated land use benefits; state-owned area; collective area; China
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Li, Q.; Hu, S.; Du, G.; Zhang, C.; Liu, Y. Cultivated Land Use Benefits Under State and Collective Agrarian Property Regimes in China. Sustainability 2018, 10, 7.

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