AARES-SA cordially invites you to the Seminar: Institutional Land Ownership and Conservation Practice Adoption, presented by Associate Professor Otavio Camargo Bartalotti.


Since 1980s, there has been a persistent shift in farmland ownership from individually or family-owned farms to institutional structures (trusts, corporations, and LLCs). This has been recently accompanied by land consolidation under unified management – the share of owner-operated farmland dropped from 37% in 2017 to 32% in 2022, marking an 18 percentage-point reduction since 1982 (Tong and Zhang, 2023). The relationship between farmland tenure and the adoption of conservation practices has long been a subject of scholarly exploration. However, the effects of the rising institutional land ownership on the adoption of conservation practices are still uncertain and less scrutinized in the existing literature. This work provides an initial exploration on the relationship between ownership structure and the adoption of conservation practices.

Using data from the Iowa Farmland Ownership and Tenure survey, starting in the 1940s and conducted every five years since 1989, we established state-level statistically representative samples on Iowa farmland. The data provides no-till and cover crop adoption for 2017 and 2022, enabling us to compare the variations in ownership structure and adoption rates across years, including “disadoption” patterns that hinder the overall implementation rates (Sawadgo and Plastina, 2022).

We examine the joint decision to adopt the two conservation practices, and how those differ across farmland ownership structures and other farming characteristics. Furthermore, this data allows extending the analysis by incorporating the adoption intensity (acreage share) of conservation practices, combining the discrete-continuous nature of the decision in a latent variable model. While the results are preliminary, it serves as an initial step into the analysis of the decision to adopt particular ownership structures and, how they relate to financial incentives to integrate conservation practices.

About the speaker

Associate Professor Otavio Camargo Bartalotti is an applied econometrician, with interests in micro-econometrics, labour economics, and policy evaluation.  Before joining Monash, he has held faculty appointments at Iowa State University (2014-2023) and Tulane University (2012-2014). He received his Ph.D. in Economics from Michigan State University (2012) and is Research Fellow at IZA and the Tax and Transfer Policy Institute.

Event details

Date: Friday 20 October 2023
Time: 12:00pm – 1:30pm ACDT
Location: Room 6.01 Level 6 Nexus 10 Building, 10 Pulteney Street, University of Adelaide, North Terrace Campus, SA 5000
Cost: FREE for AARES members and non-members
RSVP: by Wednesday 18 October 2023

For any queries, please contact Alec Zuo.

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