The role of differing farming motivations on the adoption of nutrient management practices

C Buckley, P Howley, P Jordan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined nutrient management practice adoption across a cohort of farmers in the Republic of Ireland with particular emphasis on the role played by different farming motivations. Results of a count data model indicated a number of distinct farming motivations are positively related to farmers’ behaviour in the adoption of nutrient management best practices. Specifically farmers more motivated by classifications of ‘farm stewardship’, ‘ecocentric’ and ‘productivist’ considerations were more likely to adopt a greater number of the nutrient management best practices under review. Conversely, the results also indicated that ‘anthropocentric’ considerations were important to some farmers and this had a negative effect on adoption. A number of demographic and structural variables such as age, off-farm employment status, contact with extension services were found to be significantly related to the probability of adoption of nutrient management practices examined. This analysis highlights important considerations for targeting farmer cohorts for forward land-use planning with regard to tailoring policy measures and incentives in onward reviews of environmental directives and schemes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-162
JournalInternational Journal of Agricultural Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2015


  • Nutrient management
  • farmer motivations
  • practice adoption


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