nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2006‒06‒10
eight papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
Universita degli Studi di Verona

  1. Understanding the Persistent Low Performance of African Agriculture By Sylvain Dessy; Jacques Ewoudou; Isabelle Ouellet
  2. Collective Marketing Arrangements for Geographically Differentiated Agricultural Products: Welfare Impacts and Policy Implications By Lence, Sergio H.; Marette, Stéphan; Hayes, Dermot J.; Foster, William
  3. Increasing the Market Access for Agricultural Products from Bangladesh to the EU By Jorge Nufiez Ferrer
  4. Agriculture-sector Policies and Poverty in the Philippines: a Computable General-Equilibrium (CGE) Analysis By Caesar B. Cororaton; Erwin L. Corong
  5. Energy Production with Biomass: What are the Prospects By Gallagher, Paul W.
  6. Empowering parents to improve education : evidence from rural Mexico By Rubio-Codina, Marta; Patrinos, Harry; Gertler, Paul
  7. How pro-poor are participatory watershed management projects? An Indian case study By Mathew Kurian; Ton Dietz
  8. Inequality in Land Ownership, the Emergence of Human Capital Promoting Institutions, and Great Divergence By Oded Galor; Omer Moav; Dietrich Vollrath

  1. By: Sylvain Dessy; Jacques Ewoudou; Isabelle Ouellet
    Abstract: We explain the persistence of low performances in African agriculture by analyzing the determinants of farmers' decisions to modernize their farming practices. Owing to sociocultural factors specific to Sub-Saharan Africa, farmers' decisions on farming practices are strategic complements. We demonstrate that the modernization game these farmers play admits two pure-strategy, Pareto-ranked, symmetric Nash-equilibria. The equilibrium where all farmers choose to modernize their farming methods is preferred to the one where all of them choose to stick to a traditional method. We argue that scarcity and economic opportunities put forward by neo-Boserupian theories of induced-innovation as determinants of the onset agricultural innovations are, in the context of African countries, only necessary, but not sufficient to generate modernization of farming methods. Deliberate action to enhance aadoption of agricultural innovations must therefore take the African's sociocultural context into consideration, or risk failure.
    Keywords: Sub-Saharan Africa, Agricultural modernization, Fertilizer adoption, Supermodular games
    JEL: O14 C72 O13 Q12
    Date: 2006
  2. By: Lence, Sergio H.; Marette, Stéphan; Hayes, Dermot J.; Foster, William
    Abstract: This paper examines the incentive of atomistic agricultural producers within a specific geographical region to differentiate and collectively market products. We develop a model that allows us to analyze the market and welfare effects of the main types of real-world producer organizations, using it to derive economic insights regarding the circumstances under which these organizations will evolve, and describing implications of the results obtained in the context of an ongoing debate between the European Union and United States. As the anticipated fixed costs of development and marketing increase and the anticipated size of the market falls, it becomes essential to increase the ability of the producer organization to control supply in order to ensure the coverage of fixed costs. Whenever a collective organization allows a market (with a new product) to exist that otherwise would not have existed there is an increase in societal welfare. Counterintuitively, stronger property right protection for producer organizations may be welfare enhancing even after a differentiated product has been developed. The reason for this somewhat paradoxical result is that legislation aimed at curtailing the market power of producer organizations may induce large technological distortions.
    Keywords: agricultural products, collective promotion, geographic indications, supply control, quality.
    Date: 2006–05–31
  3. By: Jorge Nufiez Ferrer
    Abstract: This paper analyses the present developments and future prospects for increased agricultural trade for Bangladesh with the EU. The trade relationship with the European Union (EU) is seeing important changes in recent years. The EU has unilaterally eliminated in 2001 tariff barriers for products originating in Less Developed Countries through the Everything But Arms (EBA) agreement, which includes the highly protected agricultural products. This creates important export opportunities for Bangladesh. The paper analyses in detail the export trends for major agricultural products from Bangladesh and other countries in the region to look for any evidence of an impact from the EBA. Despite the short period analysed, there are indications of some positive impacts. However, these are often rather weak and at times there are none where expected. Analysing the trends of regional competitors, the paper implies that even with EBA Bangladesh lacks price competitiveness in some products, and most importantly a lack of marketing strategy directed towards EU consumers. For the future, the impact of the EBA will also depend on a number of other factors, such as any progress in the farm liberalisation negotiations at WTO, amendments in the Sanitary and Phytosanitary rules and the reform of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy. All of these factors have the potential to erode the benefits of the EBA considerably. The paper also addresses some important strategic aspects to improve import opportunities, from marketing to taking advantage of the trade related assistance offered by the EU to the less developed countries.
    Keywords: Agriculture, Agricultural products, Market Access, Export, Eu, Bangladesh
    JEL: F1 F13 F14
    Date: 2006–04
  4. By: Caesar B. Cororaton; Erwin L. Corong
    Abstract: The Philippines has undertaken substantial trade-policy reforms since the 1980s. However, the poverty impact is not very clear and has been the subject of intense debate, most crucial of which is the likely poverty effects of liberalizing the highly protected agricultural sector. A CGE micro-simulation model is employed to estimate and explain these impacts. Tariff reduction induces consumers to substitute cheaper imported agricultural products for domestic goods, thereby resulting in a contraction in agricultural output. In contrast, the prevalence of cheap, imported inputs reduces the domestic cost of production, benefiting the outward-oriented and import-dependent industrial sector as their output and export increases. The national poverty headcount decreases marginally as lower consumer prices outweigh the income reduction experienced by the majority of households. However, both the poverty gap and severity of poverty worsens, implying that the poorest of the poor become even poorer.
    Keywords: Agriculture, International trade, Poverty, Computable general equilibrium, Micro-simulation, Philippines
    JEL: D58 E27 F13 I32 O13 O15 O24 O53 Q10
    Date: 2006
  5. By: Gallagher, Paul W.
    Abstract: The advantages and limitations of the U.S. ethanol industry have both become apparent during the current period of high petroleum prices. One advantage is that ethanol is cost-reducing as a gasoline additive and as a gasoline replacement using E85 (motor fuel blends of 85 percent ethanol and just 15 percent gasoline). However, corn supply limits ethanol's role in energy markets; ethanol-based corn demand will surpass exports when the 7.5 billion gallon Renewable Fuel Standard is fully implemented; and even if the Midwest were to secede from The Union, the entire Midwestern corn crop could only supply two-thirds of regional gasoline demand with ethanol. Clearly, a broader resource base and other processing technologies are needed if bioenergy is going to expand its role in the national energy scene. There are wide ranging assessments of biomass-energy's potential role in expanding our national energy supplies. Those accustomed to pumping liquid petroleum scoff at the idea that an energy industry could be based on bulky crops or residues from farm land or forest. Or biotechnologists sometimes multiply laboratory processing yields times the physical intensity of biomass on land times land area, resulting in an enormous estimate for biomass energy potential. Somewhere in between zero and the enormous estimates we should find reality. This paper examines the primary factors that limit the potential size of a biomass-energy industry in the United States. First, the fraction of the existing biomass that can be economically harvested from farmland is reviewed. Second, the current and potential processing technologies and practices are discussed. And finally, the unknowns and uncertainties of bioenergy supply that could be shaped by public policy are also reviewed.
    JEL: Q3
    Date: 2006–03–30
  6. By: Rubio-Codina, Marta; Patrinos, Harry; Gertler, Paul
    Abstract: Mexico ' s compensatory education program provides extra resources to primary schools that enroll disadvantaged students in highly disadvantaged rural communities. One of the most important components of the program is the school-based management intervention known as AGEs. The impact of the AGEs is assessed on intermediate school quality indicators (failure, repetition and dropout), controlling for the presence of the conditional cash transfer program. Results prove that school-based management is an effective measure for improving outcomes, based on an over time difference-in-difference evaluation. Complementary qualitative evidence corroborates the veracity of such findings.
    Keywords: Education For All,Primary Education,Teaching and Learning,Secondary Education,Gender and Education
    Date: 2006–06–01
  7. By: Mathew Kurian; Ton Dietz (International Water Management Institute; Dept of Geography Univ of Amsterdam)
    Keywords: Watershed management, Participatory management, Poverty, Farm income, Labor, Households, Women, Forest management, Dams, Irrigated farming, Case studies,
    Date: 2005–06
  8. By: Oded Galor; Omer Moav; Dietrich Vollrath
    Date: 2006

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