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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2023

Farmers’ intention towards intercropping adoption: the role of socioeconomic and behavioural drivers

Ha, Thi Thanh Mai; Manevska Tasevska, Gordana; Jäck, Ortrud; Weih, Martin; Hansson, Helena


The adoption of intercropping, a sustainable agricultural technology, is limited in Europe. This  paper  investigates factors driving the  intention to  intercrop in Sweden. Factors included in the analysis are participation in private certification schemes, interactions with  peers  and  agricultural advisors, attitude, knowledge, innovativeness, perceived intercropping attributes and  perceived behavioural control. The  first  two  reflect  potential socioeconomic determinants and  the  last four  are  possible behavioural drivers. For  the  first  time,  the  theory  of  planned behaviour (TPB) and diffusion of innovation theory were integrated to understand farmers’ adoption of  sustainable farming practices like  intercropping .  Structural equation modelling was applied to understand the behavioural drivers, whereas logit  regression was  employed to  identify the  socioeconomic determinant of adoption intention. The  paper  highlights the  important role  of  knowledge in fostering intercropping adoption. Knowledge was associated with innovativeness (B = 0.18, p < 0.001)  and  influenced perceived attribute (B = 0.395, p < 0.001)  and attitude (B = 0.268, p < 0.001) towards intercropping. Sufficient knowledge strengthens farmers’ confidence in implementing intercropping and subsequently facilitates adoption intention (B = 0.287, p < 0.05).  Participation in  private certification schemes and  interactions with  peers,  a  bonding social  capital, also stimulates adoption intention (β = 0.91 and β = 0.70, p < 0.05). Policy implications to support intercropping were discussed.


Intercropping; agricultural innovations; knowledge social interaction; theory of planned behaviour; diffusion of innovation

Published in

International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability
2023, Volume: 21, number: 1, article number: 2270222