A Comparative Study of Environmental Awareness of Public and Private Extension Agents

Suha S. Bitar, Ahmed Shukri Al-Rimawi


This study aimed at comparing the degree of environmental awareness of public and private extension agents, and examining the association between these degrees and the agents’ characteristics. A 62-item, 4-point Likert-type scale, which comprises four sub-scales, was utilized to survey 119 agents. Cronbach’s alpha coefficients ranged between 0.75 and 0.93, which indicated the internal consistency of the study scales. Parametric and non-parametric tests were used to analyze the data. The degree of awareness of the agents in both sectors was found to be quite close, but it was relatively higher for the public agents. The highest degree in both sectors was toward the impact of non-agricultural activities on agriculture, and the lowest degree was toward the threat of agricultural practices on environment. Statistically significant differences were observed between the degrees of awareness of the public agents, but not for private agents, by specialty, time allocated to field work, participation in training activities, and following environmental issues in television. Effective coordination need to be established between public research and extension organizations; to promote public awareness of environmental issues; to develop environment friendly technologies and to make them accessible to the private extension; and to train extension agents with special attention to the young, field agents, and those with agricultural economics background.

الكلمات المفتاحية

Environmental awareness, public and private extension, environment threats, environmentally sound production, sustainable agriculture

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