University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU) - Research portal

Logo BOKU Resarch Portal

Gewählte Master / Diploma Thesis:

Master / Diploma Thesis - Institut für Nachhaltige Wirtschaftsentwicklung, BOKU-Universität für Bodenkultur, pp 86. UB BOKU obvsg FullText

Data Source: ZID Abstracts
Soil degradation can have serious negative effects on agricultural production and the natural environment. However, in turn agricultural mismanagement is a major cause for the continuous process of soil degradation. Land rental is often suspected to mediate a focus on short-term economic goals. Furthermore, the high demand for land rental and rising rental fees might put increased pressure on soils. Understanding how farmers themselves perceive factors influencing their soil management practices is therefore crucial to face this challenge. Thus, this thesis examines a) how Austrian arable farmers themselves perceive drivers of their soil management practices, (b) if farmers report any differences in their soil management practices on owned and rented plots, (c) how farmers perceive their relationship with nature (HNR). Making use of Q methodology, these questions are examined from the perspective of 33 arable farmers located in the Austrian federal states of Burgenland, Lower Austria, Styria and Upper Austria. The goal is an integrated understanding of what influences farmers in their soil management practices. First, we find four different viewpoints: the Innovative Stewards, the Neo-Traditional Producers, the Profit Maximizers and the Self-reliant Environmentalists. All viewpoints show attributes related to soil conservation, however expressed by different, viewpoint-specific statements. Second, the farmers do not report differences in their soil management between owned and rented plots. Third, the results confirm that farmers hold multiple human-nature relationships, including a nature-focused relationship shared by all interviewees. Furthermore, in contrast to other studies we found a remarkably strong presence of the Master across the interviewed farmers. The heterogeneity across farmers’ viewpoints could be taken into consideration to better-target soil conservation policies.

Beurteilende(r): Penker Marianne
1.Mitwirkender: Braito Michael
2.Mitwirkender: Leonhardt Heidrun Else

© BOKU Wien Imprint