Resource Management in the Ecuadorian Andes: An Evaluation of CARE’s PROMUSTA Program
Social Science Department, Working Paper Series, No. 1998-2
67 Pages Posted: 9 Jan 2019
Date Written: 1998
In recent years, development organizations have spent substantial resources on programs to reduce the problems associated with soil erosion. Many programs have focused on the use of incentives to induce conservation and have maintained a top-down approach to conservation. Quite often this is ineffective and farmers abandon conservation measures once incentives are withdrawn. In Ecuador, CARE International has offered an alternative approach that embeds conservation in the agricultural system. By offering agricultural diversification and intensification with a complementary program that enhances short-term benefits of conservation, CARE induces farmers to maintain sustainable practices. Using data from a sample of participant and non-participant Ecuadorian households, we show the success of the CARE approach. Participants in the CARE program are found to have high rates of adoption of conservation practices and to simultaneously change their agricultural system. Results indicate that with a strong extension service and a menu of adaptable technologies, conservation is enhanced when presented with complementary changes in agriculture.
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