A team at CCRI, led by Jane Mills, and in collaboration with the University of Exeter has developed a set of indicators that can be used to assess the quality of land managers’ engagement with agri-environment schemes and the social outcomes from schemes.  In gaining a better understanding of these engagement factors and social outcomes we can better understand land managers’ experience of engaging with their agreement and how this affects:

  • their motivation to engage,
  • the environmental outcomes delivered,
  • whether they decide to participate in future schemes,
  • as well as contribute to a broader understanding of how we assess the social sustainability of schemes.

The 2-year Natural England and Defra funded project involved a systematic literature review of 142 documents to identify a set of social indicators that are empirically and conceptually sound.  A data collection method (focused on survey questions) was then developed that can operationalise the monitoring and evaluation of these social indicators.  Finally, small-scale testing of the proposed method was undertaken on 19 farms with existing agri-environment schemes to provide a ‘ground truth’ of its practicality and validity.

The project produced the following list of 20 high-level social indicators and their sub-indicators (see below).

The reports have now been published on the Defra website and can be downloaded via the following links:
Final Report: LM0478_Social_Indicators_FRP   (2475k)
Literature Review: LM0478_Social_Indicators_Evidence_Review_Report   (942k)
Two Page Summary: LM0478_Social_Indicators_TPS   (828k)

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