Impact of land conservation technologies on agricultural productivity in Tanzania

Onesmo Selejio


Land management and conservation have been considered the most
important aspects of sustainable productivity in economically developing
countries where land degradation is a major challenge. In Tanzania, both
the government and international organizations have been promoting
adoption of land management and conservation technologies (LMCTs) for
a long time. This paper establishes the impact of three LMCTs – soil water
conservation technologies and erosion control (SWCEC), organic and
inorganic fertilizers – on maize crop yields in different rainfall zones,
using national panel survey data. The study employs static panel models to
analyse the two-period data sets for 2008-2009 and 2010-2011. The
results indicate that adoption of LMCTs do contribute significantly to
maize yield. The greatest effects of organic and SWCEC methods on crop
yield were realized in low rainfall zones, while that of inorganic fertilizers
was observed in high rainfall zones. These findings support previous
cross-sectional data analyses, suggesting for policy makers that a blanket
land management and conservation programme applied uniformly to all
agro-ecological zones is not strategically beneficial. The advisability of a
technology employed in a given zone should be supported by local
knowledge and research findings culled from that particular area.
Key words: land management, conservation technologies, maize yield,
panel data, static panel analysis

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