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Social Capital and Farmer Welfare in Malaysia

Shigeki Yokoyama and Abu Kasim Ali

No 25323, 2006 Annual Meeting, August 12-18, 2006, Queensland, Australia from International Association of Agricultural Economists

Abstract: Effects of social capital (SC hereinafter) on household welfare (rice yield, income, health) were examined in rice granary area of south peninsula Malaysia. SC is categorized into eight types by its form (structural and cognitive) and function (birding, linking, and bracing). OLS is used for estimation on randomly selected 60 household data. As for self-rated health status, those attending more community activity (bonding structural SC) appear less healthy, seemingly that old farmers normally have more time to spend on community activities and they are more loyal to their organization. Those who highly evaluate bureaucratic organization (linking cognitive SC) are relatively healthier. Frequency of attending community activities (bonding structural SC) and duration of involvement in organization (birding structural SC)) contribute to higher rice yield. Farmers who have wider and longer relationships with organizations seem to perform better farming. Wile official status in formal organization (linking structural SC) and involvement in bureaucratic organization (bracing structural SC) cause a decline in ric e productivity. The finding of bonding/bridging structural social capital has positive effect on productivity suggests that to further improve farming performance, more spontaneous and horizontal farmer-to-farmer connections became increasingly important. At the same time, to alleviate poverty, bracing structural social capital which strengthens both vertical and horizontal human network appears important. The efficacy of networking is also reflected by the positive sign of cognitive linking social capital for income and health.

Keywords: Institutional; and; Behavioral; Economics (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 10
Date: 2006
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DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.25323

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