The effects of government intervention behavior in farmland transfer on farmers’ livelihood capital: an empirical analysis based on PSM-DID

ZHAI Liming1 XIA Xianli1 WU Aidi1

(1.College of Economics & Management, Northwest Agriculture & Forestry University)

【Abstract】This paper studies the government intervention behavior during the process of farmland transfer, and its effect on farmers’ livelihood capital, using differences-in-differences propensity score matching (PSM-DID) approach with survey data collected in the Guanzhong-Tianshui economic zone. According to the role differences, process management, and security regulation, the paper divides government intervention behaviors into ten different types as treated variables and takes farmers’ livelihood capital as the output variable. Results show that the current government intervention behavior in farmland circulation can barely improve the livelihood capital of farmers but with a slight negative effect. While farmers rent out their land, the increase in their physical and social capital owing to public goods provision under the government planning programs can offset the decrease in their natural capital. The farmland transfer led by the government can reduce farmers’ physical and social capital and increase their natural capital; farmland transfer programs for farmers who have a formal, revisable contract have a significant positive effect on safeguarding their livelihood. Farmland transfer in which the rent is paid in kind can significantly reduce farmers’ physical capital, and transfer programs for farmers who own a land use certificate have a significant negative effect on the accumulation of their natural capital.

【Keywords】 farmland transfer; government intervention; sustainable livelihood capital; PSM-DID;


【Funds】 Humanities and Social Sciences Project, Ministry of Education (15YJA790068) Subsidiary Subject of National Key R&D Plan (2016YFC0501707-03)

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(Translated by Wei Yang)


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This Article


CN: 11-1262/F

Vol , No. 02, Pages 2-15

February 2017


Article Outline


  • 1 Introduction
  • 2 Theoretical analysis based on the literature review
  • 3 Model design
  • 4 Data description and variable settings
  • 5 Assumption test, measurement results and discussions
  • 6 Conclusion and policy enlightenment
  • References