nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2009‒01‒10
28 papers chosen by
Quentin Wodon
World Bank

  1. Linkages between land management, land degradation, and poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa: The case of Uganda By Nkonya, Ephraim; Pender, John; Kaizzi, Kayuki C.; Kato, Edward; Mugarura, Samuel; Ssali, Henry; Muwonge, James
  2. Sustaining and accelerating Africa's agricultural growth recovery in the context of changing global food prices: By Badiane, Ousmane
  3. The impact of Ethiopia's Productive Safety Net Programme and its linkages: By Gilligan, Daniel O.; Hoddinott, John; Taffesse, Alemayehu Seyoum
  4. Global carbon markets: Are there opportunities for Sub-Saharan Africa? By Bryan, Elizabeth; Akpalu, Wisdom; Yesuf, Mahmud; Ringler, Claudia
  5. Social learning, selection, and HIV infection: Evidence from Malawi By Yamauchi, Futoshi; Ueyama, Mika
  6. Accelerating Africa's food production in response to rising food prices: Impacts and requisite actions By Diao, Xinshen; Fan, Shenggen; Headey, Derek; Johnson, Michael; Nin Pratt, Alejandro; Yu, Bingxin
  7. Rainfall Shocks, Markets, and Food Crises: Evidence from the Sahel By Jenny Aker
  8. Finding Missing Markets (and a disturbing epilogue): Evidence from an Export Crop Adoption and Marketing Intervention in Kenya By Nava Ashraf; Xavier Giné; Dean Karlan
  9. Does Fertilizer Use Respond to Rainfall Variability? Panel Data Evidence from Ethiopia By Alem, Yonas; Bezabih, Mintewab; Kassie, Menale; Zikhali, Precious
  10. The impact of agricultural extension and roads on poverty and consumption growth in fifteen Ethiopian villages: By Dercon, Stefan; Gilligan, Daniel O.; Hoddinott, John; Woldehan, Tassew
  11. Supply of pigeonpea genetic resources in local markets of Eastern Kenya: By Nagarajan, Latha; Audi, Patrick; Jones, Richard
  12. Projected Destination Images on African Websites: Upgrading Branding Opportunities in the Global Tourism Value Chain By Wijk, J.C.A.C. van; Go, F.M.; Govers, R.
  13. The impact of climate change and adaptation on food production in low-income countries: Evidence from the Nile Basin, Ethiopia By Yesuf, Mahmud; di Falco, Salvatore; Deressa, Temesgen; Ringler, Claudia; Kohlin, Gunnar
  14. It's a small world after all: Defining smallholder agriculture in Ghana By Chamberlin, Jordan
  15. Higher fuel and food prices: Economic impacts and responses for Mozambique By Arndt, Channing; Benfica, Rui; Maximiano, Nelson; Nucifora, Antonio M.D.; Thurlow, James
  16. The future of global sugar markets: Policies, reforms, and impact By Bureau, Jean-Christophe; Gohin, Alexandre; Guindé, Loïc; Millet, Guy; Brandão, Antônio Salazar P.; Haley, Stephen; Wagner, Owen; Orden, David; Sandrey, Ron; Vink, Nick
  17. Accelerating innovation with prize rewards: History and typology of technology prizes and a new contest design for innovation in African agriculture By Masters, William A.; Delbecq, Benoit
  18. Migration and technical efficiency in cereal production: Evidence from Burkina Faso By Wouterse, Fleur S.
  19. The bang for the birr: Public expenditures and rural welfare in Ethiopia By Mogues, Tewodaj; Ayele, Gezahegn; Paulos, Zelekawork
  20. Aid effectiveness and capacity development: Implications for economic growth in developing countries By Sanyal, Prabuddha; Babu, Suresh
  21. Long-term Global Agricultural Output Supply-Demand Balance and Real Farm and Food Prices By Tweeten, Luther; Thompson, Stanley R.
  22. Information flow and acquisition of knowledge in water governance in the Upper East Region of Ghana: By Schiffer, Eva; McCarthy, Nancy; Birner, Regina; Waale, Douglas; Asante, Felix
  23. Investing in early childhood nutrition: By Ruel, Marie; Hoddinott, John
  24. Food and financial crises: Implications for agriculture and the poor By von Braun, Joachim
  25. Corruption and Economic Growth in Nigeria: 1986 -2007 By Aliyu, Shehu Usman Rano , PhD; Elijah, Akanni Oludele
  26. The role of poverty reduction strategies in achieving the millennium development goals By Bezemer, Dirk; Eggen, Andrea
  28. Anatomy of a crisis: The causes and consequences of surging food prices By Headey, Derek; Fan, Shenggen

  1. By: Nkonya, Ephraim; Pender, John; Kaizzi, Kayuki C.; Kato, Edward; Mugarura, Samuel; Ssali, Henry; Muwonge, James
    Abstract: "Agriculture is vital to the economies of Sub-Saharan Africa: two-thirds of the region's people depend on it for their livelihoods. Nevertheless, agricultural productivity in most of the region is stagnant or declining, in large part because of land degradation. Soil erosion and soil nutrient depletion degraded almost 70 percent of the region's land between 1945 and 1990; 20 percent of total agricultural land has been severely degraded. If left unchecked, land degradation could seriously threaten the progress of economic growth and poverty reduction in Africa. Within this context, most African countries strive to achieve poverty reduction and sustainable land management. In designing policies to achieve these objectives concurrently, a clear understanding of their linkage is crucial. Nonetheless, the relationships between poverty and land management are complex, context specific, and resource specific, and empirical evidence to demonstrate their linkage has been limited. This analysis seeks to improve the understanding of this linkage by examining how poverty (broadly defined to include limited access to capital, infrastructure, and services) influences land-management practices, land degradation, crop productivity, and household incomes. In particular, the study focuses on how factors susceptible to policy initiatives—such as education, agricultural technical assistance, and credit— affect households' land management decisions. Uganda was chosen to serve as a case study of these issues, for several reasons. Of all Sub-Saharan African nations, Uganda has some of the most severe soil nutrient depletion in Africa: about 1.2 percent of nutrient stock stored in the topsoil is depleted by farmers each year. Also, the country contains a wide variety of agroecological zones (AEZs), making it an appropriate microcosm of Sub-Saharan Africa. The Ugandan government has also been conducting ambitious poverty-reduction and conservation efforts, and a study such as this one serves to measure those efforts. Working with the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS), the authors drew on Uganda's 2002–03 National Household Survey, as well as a specific survey conducted to collect poverty, land management, and land-degradation data at the household and plot levels." from text
    Keywords: Poverty, Land management, Soil degradation,
    Date: 2008
  2. By: Badiane, Ousmane
    Abstract: "Starting in the mid-1990s, Africa embarked upon its longest period of sustained, positive per capita income growth since the 1960s. This growth recovery has made a dent in poverty and holds out hope that a number of African countries may reach the Millennium Development Goal targets for poverty and food security (MDG 1), if not by 2015, then within the following few years. Agricultural growth has been, and will remain, key to reducing poverty and hunger in Africa. To significantly reduce poverty, Africa needs to sustain, broaden, and accelerate its recent growth performance and boost its investments in agriculture. The recent spike in global food prices represents an opportunity that could support further agricultural sector growth in Africa. The unfolding financial crisis, on the other hand, could have the reverse effect, especially if it leads to lower investments in the sector." from author's abstract
    Keywords: Food prices, Agricultural growth, economic recovery, Development assistance,
    Date: 2008
  3. By: Gilligan, Daniel O.; Hoddinott, John; Taffesse, Alemayehu Seyoum
    Abstract: "This paper assesses the impact of Ethiopia's Productive Safety Nets Programme (PSNP), the largest social protection program in Sub-Saharan Africa outside of South Africa. Using Propensity Score Matching techniques, we find that the program has little impact on participants on average, due in part to transfer levels that fell far below program targets. Beneficiary households that received at least half of the intended transfers experienced a significant improvement in food security by some measures. However, households with access to both the PSNP and packages of agricultural support were more likely to be food secure, to borrow for productive purposes, use improved agricultural technologies, and operate their own nonfarm business activities. For these households, there is no evidence of disincentive effects in terms of labor supply or private transfers. However, estimates show that beneficiaries did not experience faster asset growth as a result of the programs. " from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Productive Safety Net Programme, Impact evaluation, food security, Public works, Social protection,
    Date: 2008
  4. By: Bryan, Elizabeth; Akpalu, Wisdom; Yesuf, Mahmud; Ringler, Claudia
    Abstract: "Global climate change poses great risks to poor people whose livelihoods depend directly on the use of natural resources. Mitigation of the adverse effects of climate change is a high priority on the international agenda. Carbon trading, under the Kyoto Protocol as well as outside the protocol, is growing rapidly from a small base and is expected to increase dramatically under present trends. However, developing countries, in particular Sub-Saharan Africa, remain marginalized in global carbon markets, with Africa's market share constituting less than 1 percent (excluding South Africa and North African countries). The potential for mitigation through agriculture in the African region is estimated at 17 percent of the global total, and the economic potential (i.e. considering carbon prices) is estimated at 10 percent of the total global mitigation potential. Similarly, Africa's forestry potential per year is 14 percent of the global total, and the avoided-deforestation potential accounts for 29 percent of the global total. Appropriate climate-change policies are needed to unleash this huge potential for pro-poor mitigation investment in Sub-Saharan Africa. Such policies should focus on increasing the profitability of environmentally sustainable practices that generate income for small producers and create investment flows for rural communities. Pro-poor investments, community development, new research, and capacity building can all help integrate the agriculture, forestry, and land-use systems of developing countries into the carbon trading system, both generating income gains and advancing environmental security. Achieving this result will require effective integration, from the global governance of carbon trading to the sectoral and micro-level design of markets and contracts, as well as investment in community management. Streamlining the measurement and enforcement of offsets, financial flows, and carbon credits for investors is also needed. This review paper begins with an overview of global carbon markets, including opportunities for carbon trading, and the current involvement of developing countries, with a focus on Sub-Saharan Africa. This is followed by an assessment of the mitigation potential and options involving agriculture, land use, and forestry. The major constraints to the participation of Sub-Saharan Africa in global carbon markets are discussed, and options for integrating the region into global carbon markets are proposed." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Climate change, mitigation, carbon markets, Clean Development Mechanism,
    Date: 2008
  5. By: Yamauchi, Futoshi; Ueyama, Mika
    Abstract: "This paper examines social learning regarding HIV infection, using HIV test results and sibling death data from Malawi. In the analysis, we compare hypotheses on social learning, selection. and common factors. Empirical results show that young women are less likely to be HIV-infected if they observed prime-age deaths among their siblings, whereas HIV infection is found to be positively related to prime-age sibling deaths among older women. This supports the social-learning hypothesis. Notably, schooling reinforces the social-learning effect of sibling deaths on HIV infection in women regardless of age. The above findings are robust to age (cohort) effects and unobserved location factors." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Social learning, HIV infection, AIDS (Disease) Africa, Sub-Saharan, siblings,
    Date: 2008
  6. By: Diao, Xinshen; Fan, Shenggen; Headey, Derek; Johnson, Michael; Nin Pratt, Alejandro; Yu, Bingxin
    Abstract: "In Africa the global food crisis threatens the livelihoods of millions of people who because of high rates of poverty, hunger, malnutrition, and food dependency are already exceptionally vulnerable. In better circumstances, Africa's agricultural sector would respond to rising prices by increasing food supply. But such a response is impossible without significant new policy actions on both the production and marketing of African agriculture. This paper assesses the likely impacts of two strategic policy options: doubling African staples production, and improving “market access” through regional integration and lowering transaction costs. Using an economywide multimarket model for 17 African economies and econometrically estimated parameters describing the relationships between growth and poverty and between public spending and growth, we assess the impacts of these two strategic options on Africa's food markets and its broader economic development. Doubling staples production significantly increases food security, reduces consumer food prices by roughly 25 percent, reduces producer prices by 10 percent (thus raising farm revenue), accelerates agricultural growth rates, facilitates broader economic growth through new agroprocessing and export opportunities, and lifts more than 100 million Africans out of poverty. Key policy actions are needed to move from this strategic vision to implementation. The first set of actions requires investing $38 billion from 2009 to 2013, or $7.5 billion per year, in a well-designed package of modern agricultural inputs and provisions. The second requires improving and extending transport infrastructure, especially major transport corridors and rural feeder roads. The third requires reducing tra*de barriers, which still remain much higher in agriculture than in other sectors. All of these actions are technically and financially feasible, but their timely implementation requires urgent initiatives by both national and international policymakers." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Food prices, Green Revolution, Staple foods, Agricultural productivity, Market access, infrastructure, economic modeling,
    Date: 2008
  7. By: Jenny Aker
    Abstract: How do markets respond to extreme rainfall in West Africa? This paper examines the effect of weather on grain market performance in Niger, a country increasingly affected by drought and severe food crises over the past two decades. Using a dataset that combines information on rainfall, agricultural production, prices and transaction costs, I exploit rainfall variation to estimate the impact of drought on grain market performance between 1997 and 2006. Time series tests suggest that grain markets in Niger respond to supply shocks and that markets are more integrated during drought years. Exploiting the exogeneity of extreme rainfall in a difference-in-differences framework supports these findings: drought reduces grain price dispersion across markets. This impact is stronger as a higher percentage of markets are affected by drought, as was the case in 2004/2005, the year of a severe food crisis. The results suggest that early warning systems in West Africa should focus on the spatial impact of drought at the sub-regional level, as well as monitor prices in key forecasting markets during the harvest period.
    Keywords: Markets, food crisis, Africa, climate change, vector autoregressive model
    Date: 2008–12
  8. By: Nava Ashraf (Harvard Business School and Jameel Poverty Action Lab); Xavier Giné (The World Bank); Dean Karlan (Economic Growth Center, Yale University)
    Abstract: In much of the developing world, many farmers grow crops for local or personal consumption despite export options which appear to be more profitable. Thus many conjecture that one or several markets are missing. We report here on a randomized controlled trial conducted by DrumNet in Kenya that attempts to help farmers adopt and market export crops. DrumNet provides smallholder farmers with information about how to switch to export crops, makes in-kind loans for the purchase of the agricultural inputs, and provides marketing services by facilitating the transaction with exporters. The experimental evaluation design randomly assigns pre-existing farmer self-help groups to one of three groups: (1) a treatment group that receives all DrumNet services, (2) a treatment group that receives all DrumNet services except credit, or (3) a control group. After one year, DrumNet services led to an increase in production of export oriented crops and lower marketing costs; this translated into household income gains for new adopters. However, one year after the study ended, the exporter refused to continue buying the cash crops from the farmers because the conditions of the farms did not satisfy European export requirements. DrumNet collapsed in this region as farmers were forced to sell to middlemen and defaulted on their loans. The risk of such events may explain, at least partly, why many seemingly more profitable export crops are not adopted.
    Keywords: Field Experiment, Export Crop, Food Safety Standards
    JEL: O12 Q17 F13
    Date: 2008–12
  9. By: Alem, Yonas (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University); Bezabih, Mintewab (Department of Economics, University of Portsmouth, UK); Kassie, Menale (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University); Zikhali, Precious (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: In this paper we use farmers' actual experiences with changes in rainfall levels and their responses to these changes to assess if patterns of fertilizer use are responsive to changes in rainfall patterns. Using plot and farm level panel data from the central Highlands of Ethiopia matched with corresponding village level rainfall data; results show that both the current year’s decision to adopt and the intensity of fertilizer adoption is positively associated with higher rainfall levels experienced in the previous year. Furthermore, we find a concave relationship between previous season rainfall levels and fertilizer adoption, indicating that too much rainfall discourages adoption. Abundant rainfall in the previous year could depict relaxed liquidity constraints and increased affordability of fertilizer, which makes rainfall availability critical in severely credit constrained environments. In light of similar existing literature, the major contribution of the study is its use of plot level panel data, which permits us to investigate the importance of plot characteristics in fertilizer adoption decisions.<p>
    Keywords: Fertiliser adoption; Rainfall; Highlands of Ethiopia; Panel data
    JEL: O12 O33 Q12 Q16 Q54
    Date: 2009–01–05
  10. By: Dercon, Stefan; Gilligan, Daniel O.; Hoddinott, John; Woldehan, Tassew
    Abstract: "This paper investigates whether public investments that led to improvements in road quality and increased access to agricultural extension services led to faster consumption growth and lower rates of poverty in rural Ethiopia. Estimating an instrumental variables model using Generalized Methods of Moments and controlling for household fixed effects, we find evidence of positive impacts with meaningful magnitudes. Receiving at least one extension visit reduces headcount poverty by 9.8 percentage points and increases consumption growth by 7.1 percent. Access to all-weather roads reduces poverty by 6.9 percentage points and increases consumption growth by 16.3 percent. These results are robust to changes in model specification and estimation methods." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Public investment, roads, agricultural extension, income growth, Poverty,
    Date: 2008
  11. By: Nagarajan, Latha; Audi, Patrick; Jones, Richard
    Abstract: "Smallholder producers in marginal and semiarid areas of eastern Kenya have not benefited greatly from research investments made in improvement of crops grown in such environments (sorghum, millet, and legumes, including pigeonpea) either by the international community or the national agricultural research system because of poorly developed seed systems. However, informal and local market purchases are the major sources of seed for non-maize cereals and legumes. In the absence of any formalized seed system for dryland crops, more and more farmers rely on local markets to supply seed during normal and disaster periods. We determined the factors affecting the quantities of pigeonpea traded by vendors during the 2006 short-rains season using simple OLS estimation. We found that the participation of traders and farmers was higher and traded larger quantities of pigeonpea in weekly markets located in areas where seed-based intervention programs in place than in non-intervention areas. Also agro-ecologically, markets located in slightly wetter regions offered more varieties and handled higher sales compared with marketsheds in dry regions. Among the traders, the grain traders dominated through their sheer volume of sales, higher investment, and storage capacity in these markets though the distinction between seeds and grains was poor. Of the vendor characteristics, young, educated vendors traded higher quantities of pigeonpea during the planting season. The amount of time spent selling by different vendors in the village fairs also had a significant influence on the pigeonpea quantity traded. Certain market infrastructure variables such as distance to the local markets and the access to information sources (mobile phones) also significantly influenced the amount of pigeonpea sold among vendors in these markets. The existing pigeonpea value chain in local markets could be improved further, provided proper synergies exist between different actors in the system. This would enhance local crop diversity levels as well as improve access to quality plant materials for farming communities in the marginal environments of eastern Kenya." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Local markets, village markets, Seed systems, Drylands, legumes,
    Date: 2008
  12. By: Wijk, J.C.A.C. van; Go, F.M.; Govers, R. (Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), RSM Erasmus University)
    Abstract: This paper explores whether websites that offer a global audience virtual access to watering holes in game parks afford African nations opportunities to diminish their international isolation as tourism destinations. The present analysis examines a sample of almost 450 tourism websites representing Rwanda, Uganda and Mozambique. Two aspects are studied in particular: the websites’ technical and social infrastructures, including website ownership and networks, and website content, i.e. the projected destination image and opportunities to bridge the main supplier-consumer gaps in the global tourism value chain. The findings indicate that there is substantial foreign involvement in Africa’s online tourism infrastructure; furthermore, that the current projected images tend to reproduce foreign stereotypes. It concludes that the potential for upgrading branding capabilities could be sourced in indigenous African cultural attributes, both high and low culture, and in contexts of the past and the contemporary.
    Keywords: tourism industry;global value chain;dynamic image formation;Rwanda;Uganda;Mozambique;upgrading
    Date: 2008–12–02
  13. By: Yesuf, Mahmud; di Falco, Salvatore; Deressa, Temesgen; Ringler, Claudia; Kohlin, Gunnar
    Abstract: "This paper presents an empirical analysis of the impact of climate change on food production in a typical low-income developing country. Furthermore, it provides an estimation of the determinants of adaptation to climate change and the implications of these strategies on farm productivity. The analysis relies on primary data from 1,000 farms producing cereal crops in the Nile Basin of Ethiopia. Based on monthly collected meteorological station data, the thin plate spline method of spatial interpolation was used to interpolate the specific rainfall and temperature values of each household. The rainfall data were disaggregated at the seasonal level. We found that climate change and climate change adaptations have significant impact on farm productivity. Extension services (both formal and farmer to farmer), as well as access to credit and information on future climate changes, affect adaptation positively and significantly. Farm households with larger access to social capital are more likely to adopt yield-related adaptation strategies." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Adaptation, Climate change, farm level productivity, rainfall,
    Date: 2008
  14. By: Chamberlin, Jordan
    Abstract: "Strategies for boosting the agricultural economies of developing countries usually focus on small farms, attempting, for example, to link smallholders with markets through production chain development. However, such strategies often fail to differentiate between different types of small farmers or to investigate the distribution of assets within the group—efforts that are important because unequal distributions of assets can restrict pro-poor growth. Further, strategies to develop production chains favor some small farmers over others (i.e., those already participating in targeted chains and those with relatively more productive assets). Using landholding size as an organizational filter, we performed a basic descriptive analysis of smallholder traits in Ghana, using data from the 2005–2006 Ghana Living Standards Survey (GLSS5). We found strong inequalities in landholding distributions within Ghana's small-farm sector in all regions of the country. Using a classification of smallholders we derived based on landholding size, we examined a variety of small-farm traits and found that many of the broadly perceived defining characteristics of smallholder agriculture—such as low input use and low market engagement—are negatively correlated with landholding size. The crowding of farms at the smaller end of the small-farm spectrum in Ghana suggests that rural development strategies based on expanding existing market chains will face challenges in connecting with the bulk of small producers, who are less well endowed than average statistics indicate." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: small farms, Smallholder production, Agricultural development,
    Date: 2008
  15. By: Arndt, Channing; Benfica, Rui; Maximiano, Nelson; Nucifora, Antonio M.D.; Thurlow, James
    Abstract: "Rising world prices for fuel and food represent a negative terms-of-trade shock for Mozambique. The impacts of these price increases are analyzed using various approaches. Detailed price data show that the world price increases are being transmitted to domestic prices. Short-run net benefit ratio analysis indicates that urban households and households in the southern region of the country are more vulnerable to food price increases. Rural households, particularly in the northern and central parts of Mozambique, often benefit because they sell more food goods than they consume (i.e., net seller). Long-term analysis using a computable general equilibrium model of Mozambique indicates that the fuel price shock dominates rising food prices from both macroeconomic and poverty perspectives. Here again, negative impacts are greater in urban areas than in rural areas. The importance of agricultural production response in general, and export response in particular, are highlighted in this discussion. Policy analysis reveals difficult trade-offs between short-run mitigation and long-run growth. Improved agricultural productivity has powerful positive impacts, but remains difficult to achieve and may not address the immediate impacts of higher prices. " from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Price transmission, Terms-of-trade shocks, food security, Food prices, Development strategies,
    Date: 2008
  16. By: Bureau, Jean-Christophe; Gohin, Alexandre; Guindé, Loïc; Millet, Guy; Brandão, Antônio Salazar P.; Haley, Stephen; Wagner, Owen; Orden, David; Sandrey, Ron; Vink, Nick
    Abstract: "Sugar is one of the most highly protected agricultural commodities worldwide. This protection depresses trade opportunities and the prices received by exporters without preferential market access. For this reason, dialogues about sugar policy are often polarized and short sound bites caustic. Yet today's sugar markets are being driven by a complex array of dynamic and emerging supply, demand, and policy forces that need to be understood. A number of these forces have the potential to reshape the global market scene. Recent sugar policy reforms in the European Union (EU) have received little attention in North America but may turn the EU into a net importer, with substantial compensation paid to its farmers and displaced processing facilities. High oil prices and the related ethanol boom place Brazil at the fulcrum of new market developments. In the United States, corn sweetener and sugar markets are being integrated with Mexican markets under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), raising the question of whether the EU reforms provide a template for new policies. And among developing countries in Africa and elsewhere there are low-cost producers that would benefit from more open trade but others who would be disadvantaged by the loss of preferential markets. This discussion paper presents the proceedings of a one-day conference that served as a forum for the discussion of these and other critical issues affecting global sugar markets, policies, and reform options. The conference was attended by 60 representatives of governments, research institutions, producers and processors from the sugar sector, and other groups interested in sugar markets and policies. The four papers were presented by internationally recognized experts from the EU, Brazil, the United States, and South Africa. Discussion openers and general discussion at the conference added further policy insights, and the papers were edited and revised after the conference to reflect the dialogue that had occurred." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: sugar, Ethanol, NAFTA, WTO, Trade policy,
    Date: 2008
  17. By: Masters, William A.; Delbecq, Benoit
    Abstract: "This paper describes how governments and philanthropic donors could drive innovation through a new kind of technology contest. We begin by reviewing the history of technology prizes, which operate alongside private intellectual property rights and public R&D to accelerate and guide productivity growth towards otherwise-neglected social goals. Proportional “prize rewards” would modify the traditional winner-take-all approach, by dividing available funds among multiple winners in proportion to measured achievement. This approach would provide a royalty-like payment for incremental success. The paper provides concludes with a specific example for how such prizes could be implemented to reward and help scale up successful innovations in African agriculture, through payments to innovators in proportion to the value created by their technologies after adoption. " from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Productivity growth, Technology adoption, intellectual property, Agricultural R&D, Innovation,
    Date: 2008
  18. By: Wouterse, Fleur S.
    Abstract: "This paper uses data envelopment analysis and new data from Burkina Faso to test the impact of intercontinental and continental migration on technical efficiency in the production of two cereals—millet and sorghum—by rural households. Econometric evidence supports our theoretical expectation that the impact of emigration varies by migrant destination. I find evidence of a positive relation between continental migration and technical efficiency and a negative relation between intercontinental migration and technical efficiency. In an imperfect market environment, continental migration is associated with greater efficiency because it removes a male labor surplus; explanations for the negative relationship between intercontinental migration and technical efficiency should be sought in a surplus of female labor supply. Overall, findings suggest that migration does not lead to a transformation of cereal production from traditional to modern, because in an imperfect market environment, liquidity received in the form of remittances cannot compensate for labor shortfalls." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Migration, Rural households, Data envelopment analysis, Science and technology, Agricultural innovation, Cereal production, Institutional change, Innovation systems,
    Date: 2008
  19. By: Mogues, Tewodaj; Ayele, Gezahegn; Paulos, Zelekawork
    Abstract: "During the past decade and a half, Ethiopia's approach to promoting development and improving the lives of the country's rural population has been driven by a government strategy called Agricultural Development–Led Industrialization (ADLI). This strategy's main goal is to encourage fast, broad-based development within the agricultural sector in order to power economic growth. While ADLI considers regulatory, trade, market, and other policies to be key engines of agricultural growth, it also focuses on increasing public expenditure in agriculture and road infrastructure, as well as in social sectors that are perceived as contributing to agricultural productivity. Thus, Ethiopia's public expenditure policy is at the heart of the policy measures emerging from ADLI. Given budget constraints, it is essential to examine the relative contributions that different types of public investments make to welfare. An improved understanding of investment outcomes will have important implications for expenditure policy, especially in terms of the portfolio composition of public resources. This research report explores and compares the impacts of different types of public spending on rural household welfare in Ethiopia. Most previous studies examining the link between public expenditure and development outcomes either explore how the size of overall public expenditure or public investment affects growth or poverty, or they correlate spending in one economic sector with outcomes in that sector or with broader measures of welfare. Both types of studies can provide useful input into policymaking decisions. However, there is a striking lack of research aimed at examining how the composition of public spending affects key development outcomes—a particularly policy-relevant question. This study fills that gap. It compares the impact of different types of public spending through a three-stage analysis. The first stage assesses the impact of access to different sector-specific services on rural household consumption and the productivity of households' private assets, differentiating these effects by geographic region. The second stage determines the contribution of different types of public spending to key sector-specific outcomes. The final stage of the analysis draws on the first two to estimate the effect on rural welfare of a unit increase in public spending across different sectors." from text
    Keywords: Public investments, Public spending, Rural welfare,
    Date: 2008
  20. By: Sanyal, Prabuddha; Babu, Suresh
    Abstract: "Although adequate country capacity is considered to be one of the critical missing factors in development outcomes, a lack of understanding of how capacity contributes to economic development and of how to account for the contribution of capacity development to economic growth remains a challenge. The purpose of this paper is to provide an understanding of how capacity strengthening as an input in the development process affects economy-wide growth. In this paper, we present a stylized model for understanding the relationship between capacity strengthening and economic growth in an endogenous growth framework. Endogenous growth theory provides a starting point for combining individual, organizational, and enabling environmental issues as part of attaining the capacity-strengthening goal. Our results indicate that although donors can play an important role in aiding countries to develop their existing capacities or to generate new ones, under certain conditions, the potential also exists for uncoordinated and fragmented donor activities to erode country capacities. From the policy exercises, we demonstrate that improving economy-wide learning unambiguously increases the rate of growth of output, technology, capital stock, and capacity. Moreover, a donor's intervention has the maximum impact on the above variables when the economy's capacity is relatively low. In contrast, donor intervention can lead to “crowding-out effects” when the economy's capacity is moderately high. Under such a situation, the economy never reaches a new steady state. Our results not only lend support to diminishing returns to aid but also to an S model of development aid and country capacity relationship. " from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Capacity strengthening, Development aid, economic growth, Learning,
    Date: 2008
  21. By: Tweeten, Luther; Thompson, Stanley R.
    Abstract: Global food demand is estimated from population projections of the United Nations and food supply is projected from Food and Agriculture Organization yield data to quantify the global food supply-demand balance for 2025 and 2050. The eight food categories examined account for 95 percent of global food consumption. Results indicate that the historic era of secularly falling real food prices is over. The real price of corn, for example, is not expected to fall over the next four decades at the annual rate of 1.3 percent that it fell annually from 1960 to 2006. The analysis foresees future real food prices fluctuating around a flat or rising trend. Slowed national economic growth from flat or rising real food prices may be little more than an irritant for consumers in affluent countries, but will entail severe hardship for consumers in the many countries currently troubled by poverty and hunger. Opportunities exist to expand food output by adding cropland in Brazil and irrigation in Africa, for example, but in the long term such developments will be offset by cropland removed from production by urban and industrial development, soil degradation, and the like. Although cropland can be expanded through higher real farm and food prices, higher yields rather than added cropland offer the most attractive opportunities for farm output expansion at low cost to consumers and the environment. The slowing rate of increase in crop and livestock yields corresponds with a slowing rate of increase in public and in private agricultural research and development spending. The world will not have the luxury of curtailing spending on agricultural technology and rejecting promising technologies such as genetically modified organisms (GMOs) if is to keep real food costs from rising. Productive new cropland, irrigation, genetically modified varieties, and other technologies will be hard pressed indeed to match the massive historic gains from hybrid varieties, irrigation, synthetic fertilizers, and mechanization. On the demand side, subsidies to expand demand for farming resources such as biofuels will need revisiting if rising food costs are to be contained.
    Keywords: World Food Supply-Demand, Food Prices, Agricultural Markets, Crop and Livestock Yields, Agricultural and Food Policy, Demand and Price Analysis, International Development, Q11, Q18,
    Date: 2008–12
  22. By: Schiffer, Eva; McCarthy, Nancy; Birner, Regina; Waale, Douglas; Asante, Felix
    Abstract: "This paper provides an assessment of information flows and the acquisition of knowledge in water governance of the Upper East Region, Ghana. These flows are patchy, often parallel, disconnected or slow. In many cases a great deal of information is gathered but for a number of reasons not transferred into knowledge that impacts on decision making and action. An analysis of knowledge flows can serve as guidance for research projects and capacity building endeavours to allow tackling the gap between data collection and knowledge for action." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Water governance, Irrigation, drinking water, information flow,
    Date: 2008
  23. By: Ruel, Marie; Hoddinott, John
    Abstract: "It has long been known that good nutrition is essential to children's physical and cognitive development, but recent evidence sheds new light on the optimal timing of interventions to improve child nutrition and the long-term effects of such interventions. Recent studies have shown that undernutrition has a whole range of effects that impede not only children's nutrition and development in the short term, but also their cognitive abilities and productivity in adulthood, with measurable economic impacts. They have also shown that the window of opportunity for addressing child nutritional needs in ways that produce healthy, productive adults lasts from conception through age two. After that, the effects of undernutrition are largely irreversible. By addressing the large and severe problem of early childhood undernutrition in many poor countries, policymakers could maximize the effectiveness of investments designed to achieve overall development goals." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Children, Nutrition, malnutrition, Undernutrition, Nutrition policy Developing countries,
    Date: 2008
  24. By: von Braun, Joachim
    Abstract: "High food prices from 2007 through mid-2008 had serious implications for food and nutrition security, macroeconomic stability, and political security. The unfolding global financial crisis and economic slowdown have now pushed food prices to lower levels. Yet the financial crunch has also decreased the availability of capital at a time when accelerated investment in agriculture is urgently needed. The food and financial crises will have strong and long-lasting effects on emerging economies and poor people. A synchronized response is needed to ease the burden on the poor and allow agriculture to face new challenges and respond to new opportunities. Three sets of complementary policy actions should be taken: (1) promote pro-poor agricultural growth, (2) reduce market volatility, and (3) expand social protection and child nutrition action. Agriculture requires strategic investment action, and the food-insecure poor need a bailout now." from Text
    Keywords: food security, Nutrition security, Pro-poor growth, Agricultural growth, Food prices, Social protection, Global financial crises,
    Date: 2008
  25. By: Aliyu, Shehu Usman Rano , PhD; Elijah, Akanni Oludele
    Abstract: Abstract The World Bank (2000) asserts that corruption is the single greatest impediment to economic growth in third world countries. This study was set out to investigate the impact of corruption on economic growth in Nigeria from 1986 to 2007. A Barro-type endogenous growth model was adopted and reconditioned to suit the purpose of the paper. The Engle-Granger (1987) cointegration and error correction mechanism (ECM) techniques were employed to unit root properties of the variables, their long run relationship and to determine values of long run parameters. The results show that corruption exerts significant direct effect on economic growth and indirectly via some critical variables examined by the paper which include Government Capital Expenditure, Human Capital Development and Total employment. The paper discovers that about 20% of the increase in government capital expenditure ends up in private pockets. It is, therefore, recommended that the government should consolidate on its efforts to fight corruption to a standstill in the country.
    Keywords: corruption; economic growth; cointegration
    JEL: H50 O50 H52
    Date: 2008–10–10
  26. By: Bezemer, Dirk; Eggen, Andrea (Groningen University)
    Abstract: We provide a literature overview of the linkages between Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs) and the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) and use novel data to examine their relation. We find that introduction of a PRSP is associated with progress in four of the nine MDG indicators we study. PRSP are effective in respect of implementing defined policies (immunization, school enrolment) but not broader measures of MDG achievement (mortality, literacy, gender equality). Less speedy PRSP development and better quality of formulated policy actions in a PRSP are both helpful in achieving child health targets. Setting clearly defined targets and indicators improves progress in education targets. We discuss these findings in the context of other PRSP assessments in the literature and propose future research avenues.
    Date: 2008
  27. By: Kang, Hyunsoo; Kennedy, P. Lynn; Hilbun, Brian
    Abstract: This analysis presents the determination of an import demand function for the world rice market using annual data from 1994 to 2007. In the specification and analysis of a world rice market import demand function, Ordinary Least Square (OLS), Instrumental Variables (IV) with Generalized Method of Moments (GMM), and Seemingly Unrelated Regression (SUR) methods have been used. Social welfare effects have been obtained using consumer surplus and compensated variation for the top four rice importing countries (Indonesia, Philippines, Nigeria, and Saudi Arabia). Empirical results suggest that economic growth, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), and importing countries’ population positively affect national income, thus, positively affecting rice consumption. Oil price has a strong effect on the domestic rice prices in importing countries. This paper also estimates the social effects arising from increased rice export prices and examines how consumer surplus is affected in major rice importing countries.
    Keywords: rice export and import, consumer surplus, trade, import demand function, International Relations/Trade,
    Date: 2009–01
  28. By: Headey, Derek; Fan, Shenggen
    Abstract: "Although the potential causes and consequences of recent increases in international food prices have attracted widespread attention, many existing appraisals are superficial and/or piecemeal. This paper attempts to provide a more comprehensive review of these issues based on the best and most recent research, and includes fresh theoretical and empirical analysis. We first analyze the causes of the current crisis by considering how well standard explanations hold up against relevant economic theory and important stylized facts. Some explanations, especially rising oil prices, the depreciation of the US dollar, biofuel demand, and some commodity-specific explanations, hold up much better than some others. We then provide an appraisal of the likely macro- and microeconomic impacts of the crisis in developing countries. We observe a large gap in the effects of macro and micro factors, and note that when these factors are used to identify the most vulnerable countries, the results often point in different directions. We conclude with a brief discussion of what ought to be learned from this crisis." from authors' abstract
    Keywords: Food prices, global food crisis, oil prices, Biofuels, poverty impacts, macroeconomic impacts,
    Date: 2008

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