Systematic Risk Management on Farms

Jarkko Leppälä

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisCollection of Articles


The objective of this dissertation study was to increase understanding of systematic riskmanagement on farms. Special attention was paid to the development and usability of holistic risk management tools, evaluating the effectiveness of farm safety risk management interventions and sustainability risk management on farms. The management of diverse risks is critical for farm business continuity. More management tools are needed to support farms in systematic risk management in practice. A mixed methods research design was applied in this study. In the literature review (sub-study 1), potential risk management tools applicable to managing farm risks were listed and analysed. The survey in sub-study 2 (n = 130) provided an overview of the management challenges faced by farmers and the importance of various management skills. Sub-study 3 was a survey (n = 591) to analyse the farm risks, farm safety and security risk management practices, and the effectiveness of the Farmers' Occupational Health Service in risk management. The Farm Risk Map framework was constructed and its use was analysed on case farms in sub-study 4. Sub-study 5 was a case study in which risk management tools were applied to farm sustainability management. The dependence on one person, fire risk incidents, machinery damage, infrastructure problems, a larger farm field size and high physical work strain were associated with a higher safety risk on farms. Higher safety risk among the membership of the Farmers' Occupational Health Service (FOHS) is probably biased by other variables. The farmers who carried out regular safety and security risk monitoring on their farm had fewer safety risk incidents. The new Farm Risk Map developed in this dissertation study can assist systematic and holistic risk management on farms. The case study in sub-study 5 presented how the farm sustainability risk management drivers can be monitored and used as risk buffers in farm sustainability management. The new risk management tools developed in this study are being used on farms, research and in education. Changes in agriculture such as the increasing size of farms, farmer ageing and health risks, regional security problems, the adaptation of new technology and new production and business models may increase the need for risk management on farms. Current risk management on farms are not at a sufficient level in relation to the needs for farm safety and security and sustainable management. Improved knowledge of farmer management skills and the advanced use of holistic risk management tools on farms are needed. Cooperation between different research fields and farmer risk management education are required to develop risk management in agriculture.
Translated title of the contributionSystemaattinen riskienhallinta maatalousyrityksissä
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor's degree
Awarding Institution
  • Aalto University
  • Kauranen, Ilkka, Supervising Professor
  • Rautiainen, Risto, Thesis Advisor, External person
Print ISBNs978-952-60-6634-9
Electronic ISBNs978-952-60-6635-6
Publication statusPublished - 2016
MoE publication typeG5 Doctoral dissertation (article)


  • agriculture
  • management
  • farm risk map
  • safety
  • security

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