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Economic Case Studies

Case studies are a tool to document producer experiences, and a practical method for improving our planning, prioritizing assistance, and reaching out to new agricultural producers. These experiences provide a practical source of information that shows how a prescribed treatment can work.

Case studies or “Producer Experiences” are actual stories developed to present social, economic and environmental information on the conservation effects of implementing NRCS conservation practices. Typically, field conservationists will make observations of conservation treatments applied by one or more land user(s) and record the effects. Case study information may also be available from conservation field trials, Conservation Innovation Grant projects, university research plots or other field demonstration sites.

Case studies are used to evaluate the effects of conservation and do not require the degree of detail or the rigor of analysis used in university level research.  However, they should be much more insightful than casual observation and help us gain a better understanding of the ecological implications of change from current production systems to conservation treatments. 

Agency policy states that case studies should be stored in the Field Office Technical Guide (FOTG), Section V, titled “Producer Experiences” or “Case Studies” for use in future planning efforts and training activities. Different states’ FOTG may place case studies in either “Producer Experiences” or “Case Studies” depending on State policy.

American Farmland Trust - NRCS Case Studies

100 Economic Case Studies from the Soil Health Institute
Economics of Soil Health: Farmer Experiences Across Systems by Dr. Archie Flanders, Soils Health Institute

Below is a listing of Economic Case Studies developed by NRCS Economists