Agri-Environment Scheme Design: Past Lessons and Future Suggestions

P. Cullen*, P. Dupraz, J. Moran, P. Murphy, R. O'Flaherty, C. O'Donoghue, R. O'Shea, M. Ryan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This article summarises the views of a panel of experts from the areas of agricultural economics, ecology, agri-environmental policy and agricultural extension who were bought together for a novel workshop on agri-environment schemes conducted at the Agricultural Economics Society's 91 st Annual Conference. The panel discussed the past, present and future of European Union agri-environment schemes with emphasis on the movement from top-down action-based schemes to participatory-partnership results-based schemes. Pierre Dupraz, an expert in economic evaluations of agri-environment schemes, pointed out past issues of agri-environment schemes including the conflicting objectives and the growing complexity. James Moran, an ecologist who has been involved in the design of results-based schemes, identified the importance of designing schemes that are adaptable and incentivise farmers to improve. Ronan O'Flaherty, a senior policymaker involved in new scheme design in Ireland, shone a light on the policy behind agri-environment schemes and the importance of stakeholder buy-in. Pat Murphy, a knowledge transfer specialist involved in the implementation of agri-environment schemes, discussed the importance that knowledge transfer must play in the future of agri-environment schemes. Together the speakers identified the challenges faced in designing and implementing agri-environment schemes that improve environmental outcomes whether they be action or results-based.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-30
Number of pages5
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018

JEL classifications

  • o13 - "Economic Development: Agriculture; Natural Resources; Energy; Environment; Other Primary Products"


  • agri-environmental policy
  • agricultural economics
  • complexity
  • European Union
  • future prospect
  • policy analysis
  • policy development
  • top-down approach
  • Europe

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