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Journal of Integrative Agriculture  2018, Vol. 17 Issue (08): 1888-1899    DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(18)62006-4
Agricultural Economics and Management Advanced Online Publication | Current Issue | Archive | Adv Search |
What determines irrigation efficiency when farmers face extreme weather events? A field survey of the major wheat producing regions in China
SONG Chun-xiao1, Les Oxley2, MA Heng-yun1 
1 College of Economics and Management, Henan Agricultural University, Zhengzhou 450002, P.R.China
2 Department of Economics and Finance, University of Waikato, Hamilton 3240, New Zealand
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摘要  Received  12 December, 2017    Accepted  24 May, 2018

Water availability is a major constraint on grain production in China, therefore, improving irrigation efficiency is particularly important when agriculture faces extreme weather events.  This paper first calculates irrigation efficiency with a translog stochastic frontier production function and then investigates what happens when extreme weather events occur via a Tobit model.  The estimated results reveal several important features of irrigation practices: i) irrigation efficiency is lower when extreme weather events occur; ii) large variations in irrigation efficiency occur across irrigation facilities; iii) the farm plots exhibit an extreme distribution across efficiency levels; and iv) water-saving techniques, technology adoption, and the maintenance of farmers’ economic resilience are major determinants of irrigation efficiency.  Based on these results we propose the following recommendations: i) farmers should balance crop yield and water use; undertake relevant training programs and adopt water-saving techniques; ii) local governments and researchers should help farmers to find the optimal level of irrigation water use based on their own circumstances and provide better water-saving techniques and training programs rather than simply encouraging farmers to invest in irrigation facilities in the most extreme weather years; and iii) the income level of farm households should be increased so as to improve their resilience to natural disasters.
Keywords:  irrigation efficiency ')" href="#">  
Received: 12 December 2017   Accepted:
Fund: This study was supported by the State Social Science Funds of China (14BGL093), the Specialized Research Fund for the Jointed Doctoral Program of Higher Education of China (20124105110006), and the International Development Research Center (107093-001).
Corresponding Authors:  Correspondence MA Heng-yun, Tel: +86-371-56990018, Fax: +86-371-56990014, E-mail:    
About author:  SONG Chun-xiao, Tel: +86-371-56990018, Fax: +86-371-56990014, E-mail:; Les Oxley, Tel: +64-7-8384466, Fax: +64-7-8384063, E-mail:;
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SONG Chun-xiao, Les Oxley, MA Heng-yun. 2018. What determines irrigation efficiency when farmers face extreme weather events? A field survey of the major wheat producing regions in China. Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 17(08): 1888-1899.

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