This study is based on field survey of households involved in Swidden in Orissa, India. Conventionally, swidden agricultural system has been interpreted as inefficient (economically), destructive (ecologically) and an inflexible static form (institutionally) of agriculture. The economic efficiency in swidden, in particular poses an analytical problem, largely due to the institutional structures and multiple crop situations involved in this system. Conventionally, efficiency of farm performance is understood through the ratio of output and inputs wherein productivity per unit of input is the undercurrent of efficiency. In this context, the paper attempts to clarify some of the concepts relating to economic efficiency in swidden agricultural system, measure technical efficiency and identify the key factors affecting efficiency of swidden agricultural system practiced in the region. Results suggest that swidden in particular is not an inefficient form of agriculture, particularly from energy use point of view.
Dr. Amalendu Jyotishi, “Efficiency of the Small Farm Swidden System: Cases from Orissa”, The IUP Journal of Agricultural Economics, vol. 3, pp. 72-85, 2008.