Reconciling livelihoods and landscapes: Trade policies, labor markets, and land use in the Philippines
I. Coxhead; A. Rola
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SANREM CRSP, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
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The authors addressed the contribution of national economic development policies to natural resource management and the possibility of achieving higher incomes for rural households while sustaining the productivity of the resource base in a five year research project in the Philippine island of Mindanao.
Their research demonstrates that crop prices and non-farm employment opportunities influence upland farmers’ land use and cropping decisions. This finding has sustainability implications because incentives and constraints in commodity and labor markets may favor crops that call for environmentally damaging management practices over those that ensure greater soil protection and require less chemical inputs. Therefore policies affecting the profitability of various crops or the availability and attractiveness of non-farm employment can help curtail rates of deforestation, soil erosion, and water pollution.
This brief draws from the following article: Coxhead, I., A. Rola and K. Kim. 2001. Philippine development strategies, price policies and national markets: Growth, policies and upland resource use. In: Coxhead I. and G. Buenavista (eds.). Seeking Sustainability: Challenges of Agricultural Development and Environmental Management in a Philippine Watershed. Los Banos, Laguna, Philippines: PCARRD.