Special Issue "Agriculture and Rural Development"

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2016)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Sanzidur Rahman

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Plymouth, Drake Circus, Plymouth PL4 8AA, UK
Website | E-Mail
Interests: agricultural economics; productivity and efficiency; technological progress in agriculture; agriculture and energy interaction; sustainable livelihoods;poverty; rural non farm economy.
Guest Editor
Dr. Sanzidur Rahman

Associate Professor (Reader) in International Development, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Plymouth, Plymouth, UK
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +44-1752-585911
Fax: +44-1752-584710
Interests: agricultural economics; productivity and efficiency; technological progress in agriculture; agriculture and energy interactions; sustainable agriculture; sustainable livelihoods; poverty and nutrition; international development

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is now widely accepted that sound agricultural and rural development is key for stimulating the livelihoods and the economy, both at the local and national level, because poverty, particularly chronic poverty, remains persistent and pervasive in rural areas of developing economies. However, future challenges include uncertainty about climate change, market integration of agriculture and its products, value addition in agriculture, inadequate and/or lacking rural non-farm economy, and infrastructure. On the other hand, opportunities include lower cost of technology adoption, use of digital information and communication technology, internet and e-commerce, thereby, potentially breaking the gap in rural–urban divide, digital divide, and/or promoting technological leapfrogging.

This Special Issue is aimed at soliciting original contributions from the developing world, which provide theoretical insights and/or empirical evidence of agricultural and/or rural development programs and/or strategies conducted either at the local or national level that are successful and can provide valuable lessons for the future. The scope of submission includes original research and review articles that address the issues raised above.

Dr. Sanzidur Rahman
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agriculture is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 550 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Climate change and agriculture
  • Market integration of agriculture
  • Value added agriculture
  • Agriculture – energy interaction
  • Rural non-farm economy
  • Rural infrastructure
  • Rural institutions
  • ICT in rural areas
  • E-commerce in rural areas
  • Key drivers of rural development
  • Sustainable rural livelihoods

Published Papers (6 papers)

View options order results:
result details:
Displaying articles 1-6
Export citation of selected articles as:

Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessArticle Assessment of the Impact of Small-Scale Irrigation on Household Livelihood Improvement at Gubalafto District, North Wollo, Ethiopia
Agriculture 2016, 6(3), 27; doi:10.3390/agriculture6030027
Received: 3 March 2016 / Revised: 3 June 2016 / Accepted: 3 June 2016 / Published: 24 June 2016
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (2340 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Ethiopia has been highly affected by drought and climate-related hazards, and millions of people have been left without sustenance every year. To increase productivity and diversify the livelihood scenarios as an option, small-scale irrigation (SSI) schemes have been introduced.This study assessed the impact
[...] Read more.
Ethiopia has been highly affected by drought and climate-related hazards, and millions of people have been left without sustenance every year. To increase productivity and diversify the livelihood scenarios as an option, small-scale irrigation (SSI) schemes have been introduced.This study assessed the impact of SSI in achieving household livelihood improvement and the major challenges of SSI practices in the Gubalafto district. Questionnaires, interviews, focus group discussions, and participant observation data collection tools were used. Proportionally, a total of 374 respondents were included.The collected data was analyzed by descriptive statistics. The application of SSI improved the annual income of irrigator households from 1978.12 to 10,099 Ethiopian Birr (ETB) (1 USD ≈ 20 ETB) before and after using irrigation with a standard deviation of 1534.32 compared to non-irrigators who have an annual average income of 3146.75 ETB with a standard deviation of 1838, respectively. It proved that 32.1% of irrigators increased their frequency of production due to irrigation. Shortage of water, access to improved seeds, marketing, and increment of farm input costs have been hindering SSI practices. Awareness campaigns for non-irrigators and adequate supervision for the irrigators by development agents (DAs) and district officials are important to improve the livelihood of farmers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agriculture and Rural Development)
Figures

Open AccessArticle Competitiveness, Profitability, Input Demand and Output Supply of Maize Production in Bangladesh
Agriculture 2016, 6(2), 21; doi:10.3390/agriculture6020021
Received: 4 December 2015 / Revised: 6 May 2016 / Accepted: 16 May 2016 / Published: 23 May 2016
PDF Full-text (240 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The study assesses international competitiveness, profitability, output supply and input demand of maize production using a farm survey data of 165 farmers from two major maize growing areas (i.e., Dinajpur and Lalmonirhat districts) of northwestern Bangladesh. Results revealed that maize production
[...] Read more.
The study assesses international competitiveness, profitability, output supply and input demand of maize production using a farm survey data of 165 farmers from two major maize growing areas (i.e., Dinajpur and Lalmonirhat districts) of northwestern Bangladesh. Results revealed that maize production is globally competitive and, therefore, can successfully substitute its import. Maize production is also profitable at the farm level (Benefit Cost Ratio = 1.21) with no adverse influence of farm size on yield and profitability. Maize farmers are also responsive to changes in market prices of inputs and outputs. A 1% increase in maize price will increase output supply by 0.4%. The most dominant driver of maize supply and other input demands is land. A 1% increase in available land will increase maize supply by a substantial 3.9%. In addition, landless laborers will benefit through an increase in hired labor demand when land area increases. Policy implications include investments in R&D, tenurial reform to consolidate land holding and smooth functioning of the hired labor market in order to increase maize production and profitability in Bangladesh. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agriculture and Rural Development)
Open AccessArticle Intensification of Mediterranean Goat Production Systems: A Case Study in Northern Morocco
Agriculture 2016, 6(2), 16; doi:10.3390/agriculture6020016
Received: 27 November 2015 / Revised: 8 April 2016 / Accepted: 11 April 2016 / Published: 14 April 2016
PDF Full-text (1358 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Goats are important contributors to both food and financial security of the resource poor, particularly in marginal environments such as those in the Mediterranean region. To fully understand the feasibility and potential consequences of any intensification or husbandry changes that could contribute to
[...] Read more.
Goats are important contributors to both food and financial security of the resource poor, particularly in marginal environments such as those in the Mediterranean region. To fully understand the feasibility and potential consequences of any intensification or husbandry changes that could contribute to higher outputs, it is important to have a thorough prior understanding of the functional dynamics of these systems. Here the current performance of ten goat holdings in the northern region of Morocco, classified as either commercial milk producers, commercial cheese producers or non-commercial dairy producers, was recorded, based on the Food and Agricultural Organisation and International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (FAO-CIHEAM) technical and economic indicators, to assess whether intensification of dairy production was financially viable. Fecundity and prolificacy rates were comparatively lower than those achieved by many European Mediterranean herds. Both kid and doe mortality were higher on commercial dairy holdings, where dairy sales provided an additional, rather than alternative, source of income to goat sales. Despite this, due to significantly higher expenditure on supplementary feed, gross margin per doe did not differ significantly between holding types. With the exception of indigenous Greek herds, all European Mediterranean herds outperform those of northern Morocco. The study suggests that a low level of supplementary feeding is constraining goat dairy production in northern Morocco, and that the current high cost and limited availability of additional supplementary feed restricts the financial viability of intensification. Alternative feeding strategies within a participatory approach that might ameliorate these problems, and value chain constraints, are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agriculture and Rural Development)
Open AccessArticle Social Factors That Influence Use of ICT in Agricultural Extension in Southern Africa
Agriculture 2016, 6(2), 15; doi:10.3390/agriculture6020015
Received: 17 December 2015 / Revised: 28 March 2016 / Accepted: 1 April 2016 / Published: 8 April 2016
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (933 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Farmbook is a novel information communication technology (ICT) tool for agricultural extension that is currently being field tested by the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in Southern and East Africa. Farmbook enables extension agents to assess productivity and profitability of farming enterprises in a
[...] Read more.
Farmbook is a novel information communication technology (ICT) tool for agricultural extension that is currently being field tested by the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in Southern and East Africa. Farmbook enables extension agents to assess productivity and profitability of farming enterprises in a faster and more reliable manner, so as to increase farmer incomes and achieve food security. This study looked at the relationship between challenges faced by extension agents testing the Farmbook application and select socio-economic indicators influencing their work. Specific objectives were to identify and categorize the challenges facing extension agents in the field as they used Farmbook, assess gender differences in the use of Farmbook by extension agents, understand the relationship between socio-economic status of extension agents and the challenges faced in using Farmbook. Data were collected through document reviews, administration of a structured questionnaire and focus group meetings with field agents. Descriptive statistics and multivariate techniques were used to analyze data. The results show that personal and wider socio-economic conditions do have an impact on the proficiency of extension agents using Farmbook. The study goes on to recommend measures to improve the training and ICT proficiency of extension agents adopting Farmbook. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agriculture and Rural Development)
Open AccessArticle Determinants of Food Crop Diversity and Profitability in Southeastern Nigeria: A Multivariate Tobit Approach
Agriculture 2016, 6(2), 14; doi:10.3390/agriculture6020014
Received: 27 November 2015 / Revised: 21 March 2016 / Accepted: 23 March 2016 / Published: 1 April 2016
PDF Full-text (237 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The present study jointly determines the factors influencing decisions to diversify into multiple food crops (i.e., rice, yam and cassava) vis-à-vis profitability of 400 farmers from Ebonyi and Anambra states of Southeastern Nigeria using a multivariate Tobit model. Model diagnostic reveals
[...] Read more.
The present study jointly determines the factors influencing decisions to diversify into multiple food crops (i.e., rice, yam and cassava) vis-à-vis profitability of 400 farmers from Ebonyi and Anambra states of Southeastern Nigeria using a multivariate Tobit model. Model diagnostic reveals that the decisions to diversify into multiple crops and profits generated therefrom are significantly correlated, thereby justifying use of a multivariate approach. Results reveal that 68% of the farmers grew at least two food crops and profitability is highest for only rice producers followed by joint rice and yam producers, which are mainly for sale. Farm size is the most dominant determinant of crop diversity vis-à-vis profitability. A rise in the relative price of plowing significantly reduces profitability of yam and rice. High yield is the main motive for growing yam and cassava whereas ready market is for rice. Other determinants with varying level of influences are proximity to market and/or extension office, extension contact, training, agricultural credit, subsistence pressure and location. Policy recommendations include investments in market infrastructure and credit services, land and/or tenurial reform and input price stabilization to promote food crop diversity vis-à-vis profitability in Southeastern Nigeria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agriculture and Rural Development)

Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessReview Principles of Designing and Implementing Agricultural Extension Programs for Reducing Post-harvest Loss
Agriculture 2015, 5(4), 1035-1046; doi:10.3390/agriculture5041035
Received: 31 August 2015 / Revised: 5 October 2015 / Accepted: 16 October 2015 / Published: 28 October 2015
PDF Full-text (387 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Post-harvest losses represent a significant threat to food security and farmer incomes worldwide. It is an inefficiency in the global food production system that is avoidable. In deducing principles of designing and implementing agricultural extension programs to reduce post-harvest losses, valuable lessons can
[...] Read more.
Post-harvest losses represent a significant threat to food security and farmer incomes worldwide. It is an inefficiency in the global food production system that is avoidable. In deducing principles of designing and implementing agricultural extension programs to reduce post-harvest losses, valuable lessons can be gleaned from the handful of previous extension projects and programs addressing post-harvest loss. Abstracting principles from previous experiences and using this to inform future post-harvest loss prevention programs is an evidence-based approach to arrive at solutions to this problem. This paper reviews extension programs for post-harvest loss prevention, before presenting key principles abstracted from the review that should be taken into consideration for future post-harvest loss prevention programs. This paper aims to contribute to knowledge on the role of agricultural extension in the design of post-harvest loss reduction efforts in developing countries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agriculture and Rural Development)

Journal Contact

MDPI AG
Agriculture Editorial Office
St. Alban-Anlage 66, 4052 Basel, Switzerland
E-Mail: 
Tel. +41 61 683 77 34
Fax: +41 61 302 89 18
Editorial Board
Contact Details Submit to Agriculture Edit a special issue Review for Agriculture
logo
loading...
Back to Top