Measuring the Rate of Fragmentation and Dispersion of Arable Lands in East Azarbaijan province, Iran

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Ph.D. Graduated of Agricultural Development, Department of Agricultural Development and Management, Faculty of Agricultural Economics & Development, University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran.

2 Professor, Department of Agricultural Development and Management, Faculty of Agricultural Economics & Development, University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran.


The rate of land fragmentation refers to a problem in land management that can limit agricultural development and reduce the opportunities for sustainable rural development. The purpose of this research was to identify land fragmentation and dispersion variables and to develop indices to measure those variables. The statistical population of the research consisted of agricultural land holders in East Azarbaijan province (N = 212926). A sample size of 380 people was determined by using Cochran's formula. They were selected by stratified random sampling. The data gathering tool was a questionnaire whose validity was examined by using the comments of the researchers and the experts at the Land Affairs Organization. Some local information about the land was obtained and analyzed by using the cadastre database of Land Administration of East Azarbaijan province. The results showed that Bonab and Bostan Abad counties, with the average land area of 2.28 and 13.71 hectares respectively, have the smallest and the largest pieces of land. In terms of dispersion, the lands in Bonab and Oscou counties, with the average distance of 3.8 and 1.4 kilometers from each other and from the village center, had the highest and the lowest rate of dispersion respectively. In terms of land fragmentation and dispersion rates, obtained through the chemok index, Shabestar and Bostan Abad counties, with the rate of 3.8 and 1.3 km / ha, had the most and the least fragmented and dispersed agricultural lands respectively.


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