Determining Irrigators Preferences for Water Allocation Criteria Using Conjoint Analysis

DOI: 10.4236/jwarp.2012.45027   PDF   HTML     3,782 Downloads   6,464 Views   Citations


Water allocation based on multiple criteria has the potential to maximize the total benefits to be gained from the use of a single unit of water. However most of the multi-criteria methods inherently include a considerable degree of subjectivity. In this study, we have attempted to reduce the subjectivity factor from water allocation decision-making process by introducing a conjoint analysis method. Opinions on the importance of a number of water allocation criteria were sought from a large number of irrigation farmers. The opinion survey data were then analyzed using the traditional conjoint analysis method which is widely used to analyze marketing surveys. The analysis allowed objective determination of the relative importance of five water allocation criteria (i.e. net farm income, percent of family working on the farm, amount paid to irrigation agency for canal water share). Each water allocation criteria was divided into three levels and utility values for each criteria level were estimated from the farmers’ preferences on five water allocation criteria (attributes). The conjoint survey results revealed that the respondents prefer that “annual net farm income” be the most important attribute in water allocation decisions. As would be expected the vast majority of the respondents overwhelmingly placed the “water price” in the last position.

Share and Cite:

N. Ul Hassan Zardari and I. Cordery, "Determining Irrigators Preferences for Water Allocation Criteria Using Conjoint Analysis," Journal of Water Resource and Protection, Vol. 4 No. 5, 2012, pp. 249-255. doi: 10.4236/jwarp.2012.45027.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] R. Ali, J. Byrne and T. Slaven, “Modelling Irrigation and Salinity Management Strategies in the Ord Irrigation Area,” Natural Resources, Vol. 1, 2010, pp. 34-56. doi:10.4236/nr.2010.11005
[2] D. J. Bandaragoda, “Institutional Conditions for Effective Water Delivery and Irrigation Scheduling in Large Gravity Systems: Evidence from Pakistan,” Proceedings of the ICID/FAO Workshop on Irrigation Scheduling, Rome, Italy, 1996.
[3] N. H. Zardari and I. Cordery, “Water Productivity in a Rigid Irrigation Delivery System,” Water Resources Management, Vol. 23, No. 6, 2009, pp. 1025-1040. doi:10.1007/s11269-008-9312-2
[4] M. V. Pol and M. Ryan, “Using Conjoint Analysis to Establish Consumer Preferences for Fruit and Vegetables,” British Food Journal, Vol. 98, No. 8, 1996, pp. 5-12. doi:10.1108/00070709610150879
[5] JTEP, Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, Vol. 22, Special Issue, 1988.
[6] W. H. Desvousges, V. K. Smith and M. P. McGivney, “A Comparison of Alternative Approaches for Estimating Recreation and Related Benefits of Water Quality Improvements,” Office of Policy Analysis, US Environmental Protection Agency, Washington DC, 1983.
[7] J. Opaluch, S. Swallow, T. Weaver, C. Wessels and D. Wichelns, “Evaluating Impacts from Noxious Facilities: Including Public Preferences in Current Sitting Mechanisms,” Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Vol. 24, No. 1, 1993, pp. 59-67. doi:10.1006/jeem.1993.1003
[8] J. Hair, R. Anderson, R. Tatham and W. Black, “Multivariate Data Analysis,” 6th Edition, Pearson Prentice Hall, 2006.
[9] J. Hair, R. Anderson, R. Tatham and W. Black, “Multivariate Data Analysis with Readings,” 5th Edition, Pearson Prentice Hall, 1998.
[10] D. G. Regulwar and J. B. Gurav, “Fuzzy Approach Based Management Model for Irrigation Planning,” Journal of Water Resource and Protection, Vol. 2, No. 6, 2010, pp. 545-554. doi:10.4236/jwarp.2010.26062
[11] SPSS Inc., “SPSS 11.5 for Windows,” Chicago, IL, USA, 2002.
[12] B. K. Orme, “Getting Started with Conjoint Analysis: Strategies for Product Design and Pricing Research,” Research Publishers, LLC, Madison, 2005.

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2020 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.