The Value of Policies to Conserve Native Bees in Northern Thailand-A Discrete Choice Experiment

This article is an attempt to estimate the economic value of policies aimed at conserving native bees (and their pollination services) in Northern Thailand, by means of a discrete choice experiment. The preferences of 198 longan (Dimocarpus longan) farmers for three conservation strategies in particular, namely “bee-friendly pest management”, “improving native bee habitats within agro-forest ecosystems” and “fostering the husbandry of native bee species”, were analyzed. Thereby, the part-worth utilities of these strategies and of their potential effects on the population of native bees were estimated with conditional logit and random parameter logit models. Furthermore, the contribution of a “cost” attribute to the explanation of the utility associated with the choice alternatives allowed the calculation of willingness to pay estimates for the individual conservation strategies and for changes in the population of native bees. As a result, a positive contribution of the proposed conservation measures to the utility derived from the choice alternatives containing them could be established. Similarly, positive changes in the population of native bees also increased the chances of related conservation policy profiles being chosen. It can be concluded that the population of longan farmers is generally willing to pay for the conservation of native bees in their region, although explaining their preference heterogeneity for the proposed conservation measures will require further analyses.

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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2017-04-26

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