Date of Award

5-1-2011

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

Environmental Resources & Policy

First Advisor

Moon, Wanki

Abstract

There is a growing consensus that agricultural and rural lands contribute more than just commodity outputs; they also contribute non-market or non-commodity outputs as well. These non-market attributes of agriculture are well documented; ecosystem services, rural heritage, rural economic validity, and domestic food security to name a few. Increasingly, countries want to compensate producers of agricultural commodities for providing these non-market externalities as well. Policy decision makers in the United States need adequate information about the attitudinal, demographic, and economic preferences of the public for financially supporting these non-market commodities. Our research, using the contingent valuation research method, found that select attitudinal and demographic variables were significant in the public's decision to support a willingness to pay question regarding the compensation for the provision of such non-market goods. In addition, mean household willingness to pay for the non-market provisions from agricultural and rural lands was calculated for the U.S.

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