This study describes the patterns of land control and agrarian structure in 12 rice-producing villages in Indonesia. It also explores the relationship between landholding, farm and non-farm incomes.
The apparent drastic decline in numbers of small farms in the 2013 Agricultural Census is probably caused by changing definitions of ‘farm', and does not apply to the small-scale food production sector. Inequality of landholding in some villages is alarming in terms of social efficiency and approaches polarization. Large-scale land ownership, however, does not lead to large-scale farming; large landowners tend to allocate their land in small parcels to tenants in share-cropping (or, less commonly, rental) arangements. Speculative investment in land is one cause of rapidly rising prices of agricultural land. Young people and women have limited access to land. Classic agrarian studies assumes that land tenure is the main determinant of capital accumulation in farm households. However, this study found much variation in agrarian structures because of the dynamics of agricultural and non-agricultural employment and incomes