Population and Environment

, Volume 20, Issue 3, pp 191–213 | Cite as

The Impact of Community Context on Land Use in an Agricultural Society

  • Ganesh P. Shivakoti
  • William G. Axinn
  • Prem Bhandari
  • Netra B. Chhetri


As an initial step toward new models of the population-environment relationship, this paper explores the relationship between community context and local land use in an agricultural setting. In this type of setting, we argue that aspects of the community context, such as schools and transportation infrastructure, impact important environmental characteristics, such as land use. We provide hypotheses which explain the mechanisms producing these effects. We then use data from a study of 132 communities in rural Nepal to test our hypotheses. These analyses show that community characteristics are strongly associated with land use in this agricultural setting. The results point toward changes in communities as critical determinants of environmental quality. These findings are consistent with the notion that changes in community contexts may also condition the population-environment relationship.


Initial Step Environmental Quality Environmental Characteristic Community Characteristic Critical Determinant 
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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ganesh P. Shivakoti
    • 1
  • William G. Axinn
    • 2
  • Prem Bhandari
    • 3
  • Netra B. Chhetri
    • 4
  1. 1.Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics, School of Environment, Resource and DevelopmentAsian Institute of TechnologyKlong Luang, PathumthaniThailand
  2. 2.Population Studies Center University of MichiganAnn Arbor
  3. 3.Tribhuvan UniversityThailand
  4. 4.Pennsylvania State UniversityUSA

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