عنوان مقاله [English]
Zakaria FARAJZADEH  , Samad ZARE'EI  , and Sohrab MOKHTARI  Received: 10 February, 2016 Accepted: 16 July, 2016 Based on the policies associated with Article 44, Constitutions of Iran, cooperatives have received a central role especially in employment generation, while regarding the government financial limitations, the main challenge is to finance the cooperatives. Thus, this study aimed at evaluating the microfinance potentials throughout cooperatives and their contribution to employment generation. Applied data were gathered through completing questionnaire by 120 agricultural-rural and non-agricultural cooperative members of Iran's Fars province in 2015. Tendency to participation in microfinance program and cooperatives’ fund contribution to employment generation were applied in Likert scale as the central variables. The results showed that the cooperative members with higher tendency to participate in microfinance program were those with small scale activity, lower number of occupations, larger household size as well as lower membership history. Women also were found with higher tendency to participate as compared to men. The findings also showed that men considered lower chance of contribution for cooperatives in employment generation compared to women. Similarly, members with higher household size and higher membership history believed that cooperatives were less likely to contribute employment generation goal; in addition, the chance for employment generation by cooperatives was believed less by those with higher education and higher by those with higher income. Based on the results, rural and agricultural activities might be considered as a business priority for microfinance cooperative establishment.  . Corresponding Author and Assistant Professor, Department of Agricultural Economics, Shiraz University , Shiraz , Iran ( firstname.lastname@example.org ). 2. PhD Student in Natural Resources Economics, Islamic Azad University , Branch of Marvdasht, Iran. 3. PhD Student in Management, Islamic Azad University, Branch of Roodehen , Iran .