Role identities and pro-environmental behavior among farmers

Pele Cannon, Mihnea Tanasescu

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial

8 Citations (Scopus)


In this exploratory work, we investigate the relationship between the role identity “farmer” and farmers’ land management practices using data from 30 semistructured interviews with farmers in southeastern Idaho. Guided by social identity principles, we examine how farmers’ collective identity influences environmental attitudes and behaviors. Overall, we find that most farmers have implemented some conservation practices on their land, particularly those related to soil and water, and see themselves and other farmers as good environmental stewards. However, we also find that many of their chosen conservation practices required little to no sacrifice, and in addition to benefiting the environment, were also cost-minimizing business decisions. We find that as a group, these farmers’ beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors are largely focused on productive efficiency. We argue that this focus often puts them in competition with other social groups, which ultimately reinforces group saliency and adversely affects relations between farmers and other groups seeking to influence farming practices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-22
Number of pages20
JournalHuman ecology review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019


Dive into the research topics of 'Role identities and pro-environmental behavior among farmers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this