Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Applied Economics

Department name when degree awarded

Agricultural Economics

Committee Chair(s)

B. Delworth Gardner


B. Delworth Gardner


This study was undertaken to determine which factors, if any, are responsible for inter-county variation in the percent of farm operators residing off the farm in California, Iowa, Kansas, Texas, and Utah.

These states were selected for this study because of their wide representation of the various types of agricultural and sectional differences. These states vary significantly in type of farm, tenure conditions, off-farm employment opportunities, cultural patterns, remoteness of farms from town, and other variables.

Forward step-wise regression analysis was utilized in each of the states to correlate percent of farm operators residing off the farm with type of farm, farm sales, tenancy, non-commercial farms, off-farm employment, remoteness, college education, and average off-farm income. In addition to the above variables, percent of Mormon farm operators and percent of non-white farm operators were used only in the Utah and Texas analyses respectively.

Using the results of the regression analyses, it was possible to determine those variables, which a priori, were considered to be important determinants of the trend toward greater off-farm residence of farm families.