Effect of personality traits on smallholders’ land renting behavior: Theory and evidence from the North China Plain

Chen Qian, F. Li, G. Antonides, N.B.M. Heerink, Xianlei Ma, Xiande Li*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study investigates the effect of smallholders’ personality traits on their land rental market decisions. We develop a conceptual framework and show that these internal factors could affect smallholders’ land rental market participation beyond institutional and socio-demographic factors. Our empirical analysis is based on a survey of 2119 rural households collected in the North China Plain. We find that smallholders with a higher level of openness are more active in participating in the farmland rental market. Moreover, internal locus of control plays a significant role in explaining smallholders’ land renting behavior. We further show that need for achievement mediates the link between internal locus of control and smallholder’s intention to rent land, indicating that fostering a higher level of internal locus of control—and subsequently achievement desire—could play an important role in promoting smallholders’ land-renting behavior. More generally, our results imply that taking rural smallholders’ personality traits into account in designing land rental policies may increase the effectiveness of policies aimed at promoting land rental market participation among smallholders and incubating crop farm scale enlargement in rural China.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101510
JournalChina Economic Review
Volume62
Early online date2 Jul 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020

Keywords

  • Land rental market
  • Personality traits
  • Locus of control
  • Causal mediation analysis
  • Rural China

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