Factors Influencing Farmers’ Attitudes toward Participation in Water Users’ Associations (Case Study: Markazi District of Zanjan County)



The objective followed in this descriptive-survey research was to investigate factors influencing farmers’ attitudes toward participation in Water Users’ Associations. The statistical population of the study consisted of 1435 farmers of Markazi District of Zanjan County out of whom 329 were selected as sample using Cochran formula. Random sampling technique was used for the study. A questionnaire was developed to collect the data. The reliability of the main scales of the questionnaire was examined thuough Cronbach alpha Coefficients ranging from 0.87 to 0.91 the validity of the questionnaire was approved by a group of the faculty members of the University of Tehran and as well by a number of experts. The data were analyzed through SPSS software. The findings revealed the existence of positive significant relationships between farmers’ attitudes toward participation in Water Users’ Associations and formal participation, non formal participation, farmers’ willingness to participate in water users’ associations, educational level, irrigated land size as well as period of membership in rural production cooperatives (at one and five percent levels of significance). In addition there were negative significant relationships observed between farmers’ attitudes towards participation in Water Users’ Associations and farmers’ age, job experience as well as annual income at one percent level. Step-wise Regression Analysis indicated the five variables of: non formal participation, farmers’ age, formal participation, job experience and irrigated land size explaining 77.8 percent of variations in the extent of farmers’ attitudes toward participation in water users’ associations.