University of Bonn, Agricultural Policy, Market Research and Economic Sociology, Germany
Agricultural cooperatives are considered to be important social and economic units aimed at developing agriculture. In Egypt, these organizations are expected to play a very important role in dissolving the rural society problems and improve the future development in agricultural production and to stabilize balance between imports and exports. The main objectives of this study are determination of variables affecting the following items: 1) Agricultural cooperatives' ability to mobilize resources for achieving its activities. 2) Agricultural cooperatives' ability to employ the available resources. 3) Contribution of the agricultural cooperatives in agricultural development. 4) Organizational effectiveness of the agricultural cooperatives in agricultural development. To achieve the study objectives, a questionnaire was designed and data were collected through personal interviews with 66 directors of agricultural cooperatives in Menoufiya Governorate, Egypt. The study includes 21 independent variables which affect the previous 4 dependent variables. The Step-wise multiple regression analysis revealed that: only 6 independent variables namely, number of population in the villages, the ribbons areas (both of them are served by the agricultural cooperatives), the cooperation level between agricultural cooperatives and governmental organizations in the village, the extent of agricultural cooperatives building suitability for achieving their activities, the total number of NGO membership of agricultural cooperative directors and governmental organizations were found to have significant and positive effects on the above mentioned 4 dependent variables.
The results indicate that the importance of the small agricultural cooperatives united to form central economic units to increase their incomes and effectiveness. During planning of agriculture development, the government should activate the coordination and cooperation among the roles of both agricultural cooperatives and other organizations in the villages to enhance their importance roles, abilities and the organizational effectiveness in the agricultural and rural development.
Keywords: Agricultural cooperatives, organizational effectiveness, agricultural development, central economic units, Menoufiya governorate, Egypt