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Tropentag, October 5 - 7, 2004 in Berlin

"Rural Poverty Reduction
through Research for Development and Transformation"

Incomes and Rural Differentiation: An Empirical Study in the Pelarco and San Rafael Community, VII Region, Chile

Inés Soto Reyes1, Alvaro Rojas Marin2

1Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Environmental and Resource Economics, Institute for Agricultural Economics, Germany
2University of Talca, Agricultural Economics, Chile


This investigation was carried out in Pelarco and San Rafael community, VII Region of Chile, between 1999 and 2000 years. These two communities from the central Chile have a high level of agricultural activities and rural population. The target population included small farmers associated to the “Centro de Gestion Empresarial Pelarco,” which is rural self-help organisations to the small farmers. This mainly transfers soft technology innovations to its peasant target group.

Data were collected from both secondary and primary sources. The secondary sources included published and unpublished information about the study area. The primary data were collected from a sample of 43 peasants, (on which the study was largely based). The instrument applied was a structured questionnaire.

The central hypothesis sought to show that the differences of incomes of the small farmers could be explained mainly through indicators related to differences in the production factors endowment, socio-cultural and psycho-social elements of the farmers.

The results emphasise the high correlation among the indicators used to present the level of income of the small farmers. The Total Gross Income of the farmers presented an average of 11.944.442 Chilean pesos (807.3 UF). The variables that most contributed to explain the difference of the income are; the capital, the land, the production structure orientation, the family labour availability, the level of training, the innovative conduct, the management and the enterprise capacity. Through the multiple regression analysis, it was found a R2= 0.45 between the depending variable “Gross Income” and seven explanatory variables considered in this study.

Keywords: Income, peasants, small farmers

Contact Address: Inés Soto Reyes, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Environmental and Resource Economics, Institute for Agricultural Economics, Göttingen, Germany, e-mail: isoto@gwdg.de

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