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Decomposing the Value of Agricultural Multifunctionality: Combining Contingent Valuation and the Analytical Hierarchy Process

Zein Kallas (), José A. Gómez‐Limón and Jesús Barreiro-Hurlé

Journal of Agricultural Economics, 2007, vol. 58, issue 2, 218-241

Abstract: Agricultural multifunctionality is the recognition of the joint exercise of economic, environmental and social functions by this sector. Nevertheless, not all these contributions to society are valued in markets, moreover a large share of them are public goods. For this reason, in order to make this concept of multifunctionality operative for the design of public policies, it is necessary to estimate the social demand of such functions. The objective of this article was to implement an empirical application along these lines. For this purpose, the agricultural system of cereal steppes in Tierra de Campos in Spain is taken as a case study. The economic valuation technique used relies on a combined implementation of contingent valuation and the analytical hierarchy process. The results obtained demonstrate the existence of a significant demand for the different attributes included in the multifunctionality concept, although this demand is heterogeneous and is based on the socioeconomic characteristics of individual persons.

Date: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:bla:jageco:v:58:y:2007:i:2:p:218-241