nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2016‒05‒08
eight papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. Diversification, Climate Risk and Vulnerability to Poverty: Evidence from Rural Malawi By Asfaw, Solomon; McCarthy, Nancy; Paolantonio, Adriana; Cavatassi, Romina; Amare, Mulubrhan; Lipper, Leslie
  2. Aspirations and income, food security and subjective well-being in rural Ethiopia By Mekonnen, Daniel Ayalew; Gerber, Nicolas
  3. Consumer willingness to pay for animal welfare attributes in a developing country context: The case of chicken in Nairobi, Kenya By Otieno, David; Ogutu, Sylvester
  4. “As a husband I will love, lead, and provide:” Gendered access to land in Ghana: By Lambrecht, Isabel
  5. Multi-lateral multi-output measurement of productivity: the case of African agriculture By Majiwa, Eucabeth Bosibori Opande; Lee, Boon; Wilson, Clevo
  6. Do Input Subsidies reduce Poverty among Smallholder Farm Households? Panel Survey Evidence from Zambia By Mason, Nicole; Tembo, Solomon
  7. The Challenges of Macroeconomic Management of Natural Resource Revenues in Developing Countries: The Case of Uganda By Tilak, Doshi; Fred, Joutz; Lakuma, Corti Paul; Lwanga, Musa; Baltasar, Manzano
  8. Cost and benefits from regional cooperation on grain reserves: The case of ECOWAS By Kornher, Lukas; Kalkuhl, Matthias

  1. By: Asfaw, Solomon; McCarthy, Nancy; Paolantonio, Adriana; Cavatassi, Romina; Amare, Mulubrhan; Lipper, Leslie
    Abstract: This paper investigates factors that impact cropland, labour and income diversification decisions and subsequent impacts on welfare. We use geo-referenced household data collected in 2011 from Malawi. The results show that measures of climate risk generally increase diversification across labour, cropland and income indicating that rainfall riskiness is a “push” factor for these indices. Our results also reveal that “pull” factors such as household wealth and education status of the household generally increase diversification across labour, land and income. Results also show that vulnerability to poverty is lower in environments with greater climate variability. Availability of services and support from rural institutions tends to increase diversification and reduce vulnerability to poverty. Looking at welfare measures as a function of diversification indices, all three measures of diversification increase consumption per capita, but income diversification has the strongest impacts on current consumption per capita and in reducing vulnerability to poverty.
    Keywords: Climate change, diversification, impact, Malawi, Environmental Economics and Policy, International Development, Q01, Q12, Q16, Q18,
    Date: 2015–08
  2. By: Mekonnen, Daniel Ayalew; Gerber, Nicolas
    Abstract: Despite some improvements in recent years, poverty and food insecurity remain widespread and the main challenges in Ethiopia. Using individual and household level data collected in rural Ethiopia, we examine if aspirations are strongly associated with well-being outcomes, as posited in the aspirations failure framework articulated by Ray (2006) and others. We employ both bivariate and multivariate analyses. We find that aspirations (particularly that of the household head) are indeed strongly associated with the household per-capita income and expenditure and with various triangulating measures of household food (in)security including per-capita calorie consumption, the food consumption score (FCS), the household dietary diversity score (HDDS), and the household food insecurity access scale (HFIAS). Contrary to a few other studies, we also find strong evidence that, in rural Ethiopia, aspirations are positively associated with satisfaction in life and/or happiness. Findings in this study provide suggestive evidence that policies aimed at improving well-being outcomes might benefit from multiple effects (both direct and indirect) if they incorporate aspirations raising strategies.
    Keywords: Aspirations, income, poverty, food security, subjective well-being, Ethiopia, Agricultural and Food Policy, Consumer/Household Economics, Food Security and Poverty, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy, D03, I31, O12,
    Date: 2016–04
  3. By: Otieno, David; Ogutu, Sylvester
    Abstract: In developing countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, policy makers have been reluctant to formulate animal welfare policies. This is despite potential benefits of such policies including increased domestic and global consumers’ demand for products that are compliant with humane treatment of animals. This study employed a choice experiment method to establish consumer willingness to pay (WTP) for animal welfare attributes in chicken. Data were drawn from 200 chicken consumers in Nairobi, Kenya and estimated using a random parameter logit model. The results indicate that consumers were willing to pay a premium for humanely-treated chicken. The consumers had a positive and significant preference for use of certified transportation means, humanely slaughtered chicken and animal welfare labelling. However, the consumers showed a negative preference for use of antibiotics in chicken production. These findings are vital for formulation of product differentiation strategies in the industry as well as food policy.
    Keywords: Animal-welfare, Chicken, Choice Experiment, Kenya, Agricultural and Food Policy, Livestock Production/Industries, D18, D63, F18,
    Date: 2015
  4. By: Lambrecht, Isabel
    Abstract: Improving women’s access to land is high on the agricultural policy agenda of both governmental and non-governmental agencies. Yet, the determinants and rationale of gendered access to land are not well understood. This paper argues that gender relations are more than the outcomes of negotiations within households. It explains the importance of social norms, perceptions, and formal and informal rules shaping access to land for male and female farmers at four levels: (1) the household/family, (2) the community, (3) the state, and (4) the market. The framework is applied to Ghana. Norms on household and family organization and on men’s and women’s responsibilities and capabilities play a key role in gendered allocation of resources. However, these norms and perceptions are dynamic and evolve jointly with the development of markets and changes in values of inputs such as labor and land. Theoretical models that represent the gendered distribution of assets as the result of intrahousehold bargaining should be revised, and extrahousehold factors should be included. From a policy perspective, laws that ensure gender equality in terms of inheritance and a more gender-equitable distribution of property upon divorce can play a key role in improving women’s property rights. Yet, their impact may be limited where customary rights dominate and social norms and rules continue to discriminate according to gender.
    Keywords: gender, women, land rights, households, customary land rights, customary law, marriage, social norms, household model, female farmers,
    Date: 2016
  5. By: Majiwa, Eucabeth Bosibori Opande; Lee, Boon; Wilson, Clevo
    Abstract: Total factor productivity (TFP) of agriculture for eighteen African countries is measured using panel data from Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations database for the period 1980 to 2007. Using the Färe-Primont productivity index, TFP was decomposed into measures of technical and efficiency change. The efficiency change was further decomposed into measures of technical, mix and scale efficiency changes. The results reveal TFP and technical change growth rates of 0.85% and 1% respectively. In the same period there is a decline in total technical productivity efficiency, mix efficiency, residual scale efficiency and scale mix efficiency change of 0.15%, 0.23%, 0.02% and 0.25% respectively while technical efficiency improved by 0.1%. From the results it is evident that the main driving force of TFP growth is technological progress while negative efficiency levels are contributing to reduced average productivity growth. Promotion of irrigation facilities, improving governance, improving mechanization and reducing land fragmentation are identified as necessary measures to improve TFP growth.
    Keywords: Färe-Primont TFP index, technical efficiency, scale, mix efficiency changes, technical change, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2015–08
  6. By: Mason, Nicole; Tembo, Solomon
    Abstract: Many of the ‘new’ agricultural input subsidy programs (ISPs) in sub-Saharan Africa include among their objectives raising farm incomes and reducing rural poverty, but there is a dearth of empirical evidence on whether ISPs are achieving these objectives. Focusing on the case of Zambia, where ISPs account for approximately 50% of all agricultural sector poverty reduction program expenditures, we use nationally-representative panel survey data to estimate the effects of ISP fertilizer on smallholder farm household incomes, poverty incidence, and poverty severity based on the US$2 and US$1.25/capita/day poverty lines. Panel data (fixed effects and correlated random effects) and instrumental variables/control function methods are used to correct for the potential endogeneity of subsidized fertilizer to household incomes and poverty status. Results suggest that although ISP fertilizer raises incomes, the increase is not large enough or widely distributed enough to substantively reduce poverty incidence or severity among smallholder farm households in Zambia.
    Keywords: Consumer/Household Economics, Farm Management,
    Date: 2015
  7. By: Tilak, Doshi; Fred, Joutz; Lakuma, Corti Paul; Lwanga, Musa; Baltasar, Manzano
    Abstract: Recent natural resource discoveries in East Africa provide an enormous opportunity for development. We focus on oil discoveries in Uganda and their expected impact on government revenues. We analyze alternative spending policies of natural resource revenues using a calibrated dynamic, stochastic, general equilibrium model (DSGE). We use detailed publicly-available information on the upstream oil sector and the fiscal regime to derive realistic cost and government revenue profiles across a range of oil price scenarios. This enables us to project annual production, fixed and variable costs, and government revenues for given global oil price paths. We compare the potential effects of income transfers versus public investment spending, as well as front-loaded versus gradual public investment policies. We also assess the impacts of alternative assumptions on the efficiency of public investment due to constraints on absorptive capacity. In terms of economic welfare, income transfers dominate public investments (whether gradual or front-loaded) given the typically low discount factors for households in low-income developing countries. Similarly, front-loaded investment policies dominate gradual investment policies given the low discount factors. However, our simulations show that as individuals care more about the future (i.e. have a lower discount rate), the welfare order of policies change, as the productivity effect of public investment produces a higher increase in consumption and welfare even though this increase is lagged in time.
    Keywords: Environmental Economics and Policy, Farm Management, Land Economics/Use, Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies,
    Date: 2015–10
  8. By: Kornher, Lukas; Kalkuhl, Matthias
    Abstract: In the wake of the 2007/2008 international food crisis, public food reserve re-gained the attention of policy makers. However, they come at high economic and fiscal costs. On the other hand, the imperfect correlation of supply shocks across neighboring countries entails the potential to reduce regional market volatility through intra-regional trade integration and storage cooperation. In this chapter, optimal reserve levels are theoretical derived in order to assess costs and benefits from regional storage cooperation. The model is then applied to the West African region which is in the process of establishing a region-wide reserve. Accordingly, regional stocks under cooperation in an emergency reserve can be 40 percent less than without cooperation. Limited intra-regional trade reduces the need for stock releases significantly. Full market integration would diminish regional consumption variability to 3.4 percent, less than for every other individual West African country, but is not effective in dampening severe supply shortfalls. Cooperation in a stabilization reserve in addition to trade integration has only limited impact on consumption stability, and thus storage cooperation shall be restricted to an emergency reserve.
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Crop Production/Industries,
    Date: 2015

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