Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type



Agricultural Economics

Major Professor

Ernest Bazen

Committee Members

Forbes Walker, Seong-Hoon Cho


Voluntary adoption of Best Management Practices (BMPs) has been the foundation among many environmental conservation programs geared towards non-point source pollution. While farmers view BMPs as being both appropriate and problematic, there remain many constraints to BMP adoption on the farm. The objective of this research was to determine the criteria beef and dairy producers used in their decision making process on whether or not to adopt a given BMP or set of BMPs in the Pond Creek and Oostanaula Creek watersheds located in East Tennessee. Results are presented of exploratory sociological research designed to better understand how farmers select agricultural practices with the potential to effect water quality and soil erosion. Data establishes that a variety of economic, institutional, organizational and social factors interact in dynamic ways to influence farmer resource management decisions and that the resulting agricultural practices have the potential for subtle and dramatic effects on water quality in Pond Creek, Oostanaula Creek, and surrounding water bodies.

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Agriculture Commons