nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2007‒01‒14
35 papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
Universita degli Studi di Verona

  1. The Importance of Women Farmers for the Development of the Province of Kastoria By Constantina Safiliou
  2. The regional model for Mediterranean agriculture By Lobianco, Antonello; Roberto, Esposti
  3. Analysis of the impact of decoupling on two Mediterranean regions By Lobianco, Antonello; Roberto, Esposti
  4. Young Women and Farming: A Case Study of Active Women Farmers in the West Macedonia Region, Greece. By I. Gidarakou; Eleni Dimopoulou; R. Lagogianni; S. Sotiropoulou
  5. Regional Modelling for Optimal Allocation of Agricultural Crops Considering Environmental Impacts, Housing Value and Leisure Preferences. By Nava Haruvy; Sarit Shalhevet
  6. Market Innovations and Knowledge Transfer in the Agricultural Food Market By Marit Hoven
  7. Rethinking the Role of Agriculture and Agro-Industry in the Economic Development of Thailand: Input-Output and CGE Analyses (Ph.D. Dissertation) By Thaiprasert, Nalitra
  8. Efficiency and Technology Gap in China's Agriculture: A Regional META-Frontier Analysis By Zhuo Chen; Shunfeng Song
  9. Building a Static Farm Level Spatial Microsimulation Model: Statistically Matching the Irish National Farm Survey to the Irish Census of Agriculture By Stephen Hynes; Karyn Morrissey; Cathal O'donoghue
  10. Transformation of Rural Patterns in Greece in a European Regional Development Perspective (The Case of Crete) By Andreas Tsatsaris; Polixeni Iliopoulou; Panagiotis Stratakis
  11. Decentralization Process of Rural Development Policy in Greece By Pavlos Karanikolas; Sofia Hatzipanteli
  12. Intra-Industry Trade, Multilateral Trade Integration, and Invasive Species Risk By Anh Tu; John C. Beghin
  13. Nontariff Barriers By John C. Beghin
  14. Olive Tree Farming in Jaen: Situation With the New Cap and Comparison With the Province Income Per Capita. By Carmen Lopez Martin; Pedro Pablo Perez Hernandez; Araceli Rios Berjillos
  15. Agro-Food Dynamics in a Region's Growth By Anastasios Michailidis; Efstratios Loizou; Konstadinos Mattas; Aikaterini Melfou
  16. Recent International and Regulatory Decisions about Geographical Indications, The By Stephan Marette; Roxanne Clemens; Bruce A. Babcock
  17. Does Agricultural Employment Benefit From Eu Support? By Sandy Dall'erba; Eveline Van Leeuwen
  18. Can Risk-aversion towards fertilizer explain part of the non-adoption puzzle for hybrid maize? Empirical evidence from Malawi By Simtowe, Franklin
  19. The Direction of Technical Change in Capital-Resource Economies By Di Maria, Corrado; Valente, Simone
  20. Mechanism Design for Biodiversity Conservation in Developing Countries By Luca Di Corato
  21. Value chain analysis and market power in the commodity processing with application to the cocoa and coffee sectores By Christopher L. Gilbert
  22. New Approach for Localization, Prediction, and Management of Saline-Infected Soils By Naftaly Goldshlger; Vladimir Mirlas; Eyal Ben Dor; Mor Eshel
  23. Rural Investment and the Cost of Income Uncertainty By T Heikkinen; K Pietola
  24. The Role of Public Infraestructure in Market Development in Rural Peru By Escobal, Javier
  25. Knowledge As a Factor to Improve Competitiveness for a Firm in Rural Norway By Knut Ingar Westeren
  27. Collective Action-A Challenge and an Opportunity for Water Governance By Maria Manuela Castro Silva
  28. EU Market Access for Mediterranean Fruit and Vegetables : A Gravity Model Assessment By Emlinger, C.; Chevassus Lozza, E.; Jacquet, F.
  29. Voluntary Approaches to Food Safety : A Unified Framework By Fares, M.; Rouvière, E.
  31. Spatial Efficiency Analysis of Arable Crops in Greece By Anastassios Karaganis; Antonios Tassoulis
  32. Bioethanol As Basis for Regional Development in Brazil: An Input-Output Model With Mixed Technologies By Marcelo Pereira Da Cunha; Jose Antonio Scaramucci
  33. Rural Development and Wine Tourism in Southern Italy By Donatella Di Gregorio; Elena Licari
  34. Deforestation, Growth and Agglomeration Effects: Evidence From Agriculture in the Brazilian Amazon By Danilo Igliori
  35. The Role of Research in Wine: the Emergence of a Regional Research Area in an Italian Wine Production System By Andrea Morrison; Roberta Rabellotti

  1. By: Constantina Safiliou
    Abstract: According to the 1999-2000 Agricultural Census, while in the entire country 25% of all farm owners were women, in 14 provinces, that is in 27% of all the provinces, the percent of women was 30-51% of all farmers/owners. In the province of Kastoria, the increase in the percent of women farm owners was almost fourfold, from 8.4% in 1987 to 31.3% in 2000. A recent study of these women farm owners showed that the large majority of these women (81%)are not only smallholders but owners of large farms (even with more than 7.5 hectares), cultivate intensive crops and tobacco, are actively involved in farm management and are members of agricultural cooperatives. It is not possible for rural development planning to ignore these women farmers. The increasing feminization of agriculture in this province, and probably as well in other provinces and regions, indicates an endogenous development that needs to be built upon by further development actions in order to improve their competitiveness.
    Date: 2006–08
  2. By: Lobianco, Antonello; Roberto, Esposti
    Abstract: AgriPoliS is a multi-agent mixed integer linear programming (MIP) model, spatially explicit, developed in C++ language and suitable for long-term sim- ulations of agricultural policies. Beyond the mixed integer programming core, the model main feature is the interaction among a set of heterogeneous farm- ers and between them and the environment in which they operate. In this paper we describe an extension of the model allowing AgriPoliS to deal with typical characters of the Mediterranean agriculture. In particular AgriPoliS was extended to allow a generic number of products and soil types, included perennial crops and products with quality differentiation. Furthermore, it can explicitly take into account irrigation.
    Keywords: Mediterranean Agriculture; Common Agricultural Policy; Agent-based Models.
    JEL: Q12 Q18
    Date: 2006–01
  3. By: Lobianco, Antonello; Roberto, Esposti
    Abstract: AgriPoliS is a multi-agent mixed integer linear programming (MIP) model, spatially explicit, developed in C++ language and suitable for long-term simulations of agricultural policies. Once extended to deal with typical characters of the Mediterranean agriculture, AgriPoliS is used in this paper to describe the implementation of alternative policy cenarios and to apply them to two regions located in Central and South Italy. Results suggest that the effects of decoupling policies in the Mediterranean agriculture, as implemented in the 2003 reform, are often dominated by effects of structural trends and only a "bond scheme" would substantially change the regional farm structures. In no scenario we observe remarkable agricultural land abandonment.
    Keywords: Mediterranean Agriculture; Common Agricultural Policy; Multi-Agent Model
    JEL: Q12 C61 Q18
    Date: 2006–09
  4. By: I. Gidarakou; Eleni Dimopoulou; R. Lagogianni; S. Sotiropoulou
    Abstract: Retaining young people in rural areas is a crucial factor in regional development since they are considered to be the most important human capital asset especially in promoting endogenous development. Retaining young women is of outmost importance as women leave more often than men rural areas due to factors such as the existing hierarchical structure in agricultural labour and the masculinisation of economic and leisure activities in such areas. The ‘young farmers’ EU programme, managed in Greece by the Ministry of Rural Development & Food, aims at improving the age structure in rural areas, attracting young people (up to 40 years old) to agriculture and, finally, retaining young people in rural areas. For young women, such a programme may provide a chance to empower their position within the household, become professional farmers, participate in decision-making within cooperatives and other bodies involved in agriculture and thus in decisions related to agricultural policy, and to participate as dynamic actors in the rural development process. In the frame of a wider research project concerning young women farmers in the West Macedonia region, Greece, despite a general trend indicating that young women entered the ‘young farmers’ programme as farm managers but do not actually overcome the traditional role as farmer wives or daughters, a nucleus of young women active in agriculture with a positive attitude towards farming is also found. The present paper focuses on the later category. Their occupational trajectories since the time they finished school, their entrance and role in farming, their participation in collective bodies as well as their attitude towards the ‘young farmers’ programme as related to gender are presented and discussed. Data were drawn through a survey and, mainly, in-depth interviews, acquired within the aforementioned research project. The aim of the paper is to develop a critical view of on-going policies and policy instruments and thus to highlight the need for spatially and socially targeted research which would, in turn, facilitate the optimal implementation of the ‘young farmers’ programme along with the empowerment of young women in the family farm and the public image of farming and thus the re-orientation of the attitudes of, no matter how small, a number of women towards agriculture
    Date: 2006–08
  5. By: Nava Haruvy; Sarit Shalhevet
    Abstract: Regional planning should consider the impact of agricultural crops on housing value and leisure, as well as on the local environment. We designed an optimization model for allocating agricultural crops based on farmers profits as well as the impact on these three factors. Each crop creates a different landscape, as well as a different effect on shading and noise reduction. These in turn influence the value of nearby housing and the regional leisure opportunities. Each crop also has a positive and negative environmental impact, including potential use of treated wastewater as well as the effects of pesticides and fertilizers. All these factors were combined with economic considerations to suggest the optimal regional allocation of agricultural crops.
    Date: 2006–08
  6. By: Marit Hoven
    Abstract: Food markets change with increasing wealth and the globalization of the economy. WTO and EU are challenging countries to enhance lower level of national protection and regulation of markets, including the markets for agricultural foods. Thus, the producers of food are continuously exposed for competition. As an answer to this food producers in Norway have looked for different possibilities to keep up the level of production and profitability. To some degree producers have adapted to new markets by either introducing new products for a new set of customers, or by making changes in existing products to satisfy the customers preferences. Export of high quality sheep meat from Norway to Japan can be mentioned as an example of market innovations, one of the five types of innovations described by Schumpeter (1934). In later years we have seen a tendency for groups of customers paying more for food products of certain origin, taste, design or other qualities. Although the cooperatives still are dominant in food processing and marketing in Norway, there are now an increasing number of farmers working with market innovations outside the traditional channels. Possibilities for success might depend on factors as culture, price, design and more. Specialised knowledge in different professions seems to be relevant when handling production, processing and marketing. Questions raised in this paper are: Is there a connection between market innovation success and the farmer’s ability to develop and transfer knowledge? How can we measure, understand and describe such processes?
    Date: 2006–08
  7. By: Thaiprasert, Nalitra
    Abstract: Thailand’s economic development has been quite successful in terms of achieving high growth rate and reasonable per capita income. The country’s economic performance in terms of the transformation of production and exports are tending toward the normal pattern of increasing share of manufactured products. However, the major problems Thailand is still facing are the late reduction of its agricultural labor force, inequality that has occurred as a result of the development process, and problems in potential of manufacturing industrial sectors. These three issues are made the main discussions of this dissertation. In addition, structural transformation in Thailand has posed many difficulties for the development of Thai agriculture, which is closely related to the welfare of the poor in the rural areas. Therefore, to tackle income distribution problems directly requires that farmers be given new opportunities. Agro-industry and high value-added agricultural sectors were proposed as the key sectors to improve inequality problems, smoothen employment transformation, generate high growth and induce high output production, and act as a bridge connecting Thai primary agriculture with the modern sectors. Agro-industry was proposed to be promoted in the rural areas for closer input locations, to shift agricultural workers from primary agriculture, to improve the real wage of farmers, and to prevent extensive urban migration. Qualitative analysis, input-output analysis, SAM analysis, and CGE analysis were applied to aid the discussions, prove the hypothesis, and achieve the objective.
    Keywords: Structural transformation; Thai agriculture; Thai agro-industry; Income distribution; Thailand's economic development; Thailand's economic growth; Input-output analysis; SAM analysis; CGE analysis
    JEL: O41 Y4 O4 O21 O11 O24 O13 O1 O14 O2 O18
    Date: 2006–04
  8. By: Zhuo Chen (the Chicago Center of Excellence in Health Promotion Economics, The University of Chicago); Shunfeng Song (Department of Economics, University of Nevada, Reno)
    Abstract: This paper utilizes a unique county-level dataset to examine technical efficiency and technology gap in China’s agriculture. We classify the counties into four regions with distinctive levels of economic development, and hence production technologies. A meta-frontier analysis is applied to the counties. We find that although the eastern counties have the highest efficiency scores with respect to the regional frontier but the northeastern region leads in terms of agricultural production technology nationwide. Meanwhile, the mean efficiency of the northeastern counties is particularly low, suggesting technology and knowledge diffusion within region might help to improve production efficiency and thus output.
    Keywords: China’s grain production, county-level, metafrontier, stochastic production frontier, technical efficiency
    JEL: D24 N55 O13
    Date: 2006–12
  9. By: Stephen Hynes; Karyn Morrissey; Cathal O'donoghue
    Abstract: This paper looks at the statistical matching technique used to match the Irish Census of Agriculture to the Irish National Farm Survey (NFS) to produce a farm level static spatial microsimulation model of Irish agriculture. The match produces a spatially disaggregated population microdata set of farm households for all of Ireland. Using statistical matching techniques, economists can now create more attribute rich datasets by matching across the common variables in two or more datasets. Static spatial microsimulation then uses these synthetic datasets to analyse the relationships among regions and localities and to project the spatial implications of economic development and policy changes in rural areas. The Irish agriculture microsimulation model uses one of many combinational optimatisation techniques - simulated annealing - to match the Census of Agriculture and the NFS. The static model uses this matched NFS and Census information to produce small area (District Electric Divisions (DED)) population microdata estimates for a particular year. Using the matched NFS/Census microdata, this paper will then analysis the regional farm income distribution for Ireland.
    Date: 2006–08
  10. By: Andreas Tsatsaris; Polixeni Iliopoulou; Panagiotis Stratakis
    Abstract: Rural space in Greece is experiencing a significant transformation. During the last four decades the traditional urban-rural dichotomy has given its place to complex spatial patterns which are in a process of continuous change. This change is the result of a variety of factors such as the international economic environment, the emergence of new economic activities in rural areas, mainly the service sector and tourism, the changing urban-rural relations as well as the implementation of national and European policies for the agricultural sector and for rural development. In addition, rural development is not any longer dependent solely on the agricultural sector but also on the rural- urban relationships and the presence of a large variety of economic activities in rural areas. In this paper data concerning demographic, economic and infrastructure characteristics of rural areas are analyzed for the last five population Censuses, describing the transformation of rural space in Greece. A number of typologies of rural areas in Greece are presented for different time periods which demonstrate the significant changes of rural patterns in the last two decades. These typologies are employed in order to suggest policy guidelines for rural development in Greece. The results will be presented in a GIS environment and when appropriate will be compared to similar studies in Europe. Finally policies for agricultural and rural development, in the context of European regional and spatial development, will be examined in relation to rural patterns in Greece and the development perspectives of rural areas.
    Date: 2006–08
  11. By: Pavlos Karanikolas; Sofia Hatzipanteli
    Abstract: The decentralization process of national administrative systems, the continuous evolution of structural policies in the EU and the increasing reinforcement of the second Pillar of the Common Agricultural Policy, create an entirely new setting in the field of rural policy making and implementation. A significant decentralization process of agricultural and rural development policies is taking place in Greece, by means of the establishment of a novel institutional framework and reallocation of administrative competencies. Drawing upon a case study of the farm modernization scheme, a pivotal rural development policy measure, this study aims at critically assessing the decentralization process of rural policy making and delivery in Greece within the new institutional and administrative setting. Research findings indicate that despite remarkable decentralization efforts, rural development in Greece seems to maintain its primarily state-emanated design and implementation, in a centralized logic. Long standing top-down and sectoral orientation in the formulation of this policy still holds, permeating the attitude of a number of actors, whose traditional role is challenged in the new setting. The redistribution of responsibilities and the mere multiplication of competent authorities do not necessarily advance the policy outcomes. What is needed as well is a genuine delegation of competencies and resources, coupled with a renewed awareness of integrated policies from the actors involved at all administrative levels.
    Date: 2006–08
  12. By: Anh Tu; John C. Beghin (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD); Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI))
    Abstract: We analyze the linkage between protectionism and invasive species (IS) hazard in the context of two-way trade and multilateral trade integration, two major features of real-world agricultural trade. Multilateral integration includes the joint reduction of tariffs and trade costs among trading partners. Multilateral trade integration is more likely to increase damages from IS than predicted by unilateral trade opening under the classic Heckscher-Ohlin-Samuelson (HOS) framework because domestic production (the base susceptible to damages) is likely to increase with expanding export markets. A country integrating its trade with a partner characterized by relatively higher tariff and trade costs is also more likely to experience increased IS damages via expanded domestic production for the same reason. We illustrate our analytical results with a stylized model of the world wheat market.
    Keywords: exotic pest, intra-industry trade, invasive species, liberalization, trade cost, trade integration, trade protection, two-way trade.
    Date: 2006–12
  13. By: John C. Beghin (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD); Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI))
    Abstract: Nontariff barriers (NTBs) refer to the wide range of policy interventions other than border tariffs that affect trade of goods, services, and factors of production. Most taxonomies of NTBs include market-specific trade and domestic policies affecting trade in that market. Extended taxonomies include macro-economic policies affecting trade. NTBs have gained importance as tariff levels have been reduced worldwide. Common measures of NTBs include tariff-equivalents of the NTB policy or policies and count and frequency measures of NTBs. These NTB measures are subsequently used in various trade models, including gravity equations, to assess trade and/or welfare effects of the measured NTBs.
    Keywords: externality and trade, nontariff barrier, NTB, protectionism, sanitary and phytosanitary, SPS, standards, TBT, technical barrier to trade.
    Date: 2006–12
  14. By: Carmen Lopez Martin; Pedro Pablo Perez Hernandez; Araceli Rios Berjillos
    Abstract: Jaén (province belonging to European Union) represents more than 15% of the Spanish production of olive oil, around 7% of European Union olive oil and more than 5% of the world production. Olive oil represents more than 90% of the income in Jaen agricultural sector and agricultural sector contributes with 15% of GDP province in 2003. The aims of this paper is to show the evolution of the main socioeconomic variables of this farming during the nineties decade in one province belonging to the most significant region in the world and compare during the nineties the income per capita in this province with the income in the olive oil. The variables analysed in each plantation are: productivity or cultivation yield on Hectare; labour work; cultivation expenses without including labour work; Agriculture Common Policy subventions; standar gross margin (according to directions of the European Union Agriculture General Board) and net margin. On the other hand, the main macroeconomics variables used are: Gross Internal Product, Population, labour work and productivity of labour. The information farms reflected in this paper is based upon four investigations and previous research carried out by the same authors. The secondary data has been got from Institutions and Public Statistics from Andalusian Regional Government. The original investigations were funded by the Department of Agriculture of the Andalusian Regional Government -Consejería de Agricultura y Pesca de la Junta de Andalucía- and La General (one of the savings bank in Spain). It has consisted in four surveys during the years 1991, 1994, 1999 and 2000. The first step in the methodology has been to design the sample and questionaires, after that, field camp was implemented and data processing, creating for that purpose an information system pattern (simulator-programme). Results files, ordered according to user’s likes, can be incorporated to other systems or be analysed with conventional statistics software (SPSS for instance). Main results are shown in charts and tables. After getting results we project the predictable Common Organisation of the Market (CMO) reform on olive tree farming. The recent reform of olive oil will reduce the subventions and the income of the farmer. And we also show the impact of that reduction on farming margins and the consecuences in the income per capita province.
    Date: 2006–08
  15. By: Anastasios Michailidis; Efstratios Loizou; Konstadinos Mattas; Aikaterini Melfou
    Abstract: Regional development depends highly in the allocation of developing funds -through development policies- among the various sectors of regional economies. In order to safeguard the most efficient use of investments analytical tools visualizing the economy as a whole in the form of a general equilibrium should be adopted. In this paper the role of agro-food sectors and agriculture in regional economic growth is examined. Despite the diminishing contribution of agriculture and agro-food sectors in the formation of an economy’s gross output and employment, their indirect influence upon the rest of the economy most of the times is not completely cast up. It is evidence that over the last two decades the share of agriculture in Greece’s GDP is substantially dropped. This fact many times used as a guide to support decisions in directing regional developing funds far from agriculture. On the other side, food sector’s share in processing industries is growing and its contribution and interrelation with other sectors has not been well assessed. Thus in the present paper, the indirect contribution of agro-food sectors in a region’s economy is measured and compared to non-agricultural sectors. Linkage relationships and interdependencies between food and non-food sectors are sought and their role in strengthening the regions growth is contemplated. The identification of such relationships is very important, as the path to development in some regions is very sensitive to sectoral interdependencies. To accomplish the aforementioned objectives, an Input-Output framework was employed in a regional level (Thessalia, Greece). Utilizing an employment based Location Quotient (LQ), developed by Flegg et al (1995) -the FLQ- the national I-O table is regionalized for the Greek (NUTS 2) region. The regionalization procedure was performed by following the hybrid GRIT technique. Employing the regional I-O table, linkage coefficients, that identify the dynamics of key sectors, were estimated. In addition the regional output generated due to food sector and non-food sector activity traced out to compare the relative dynamics. Results clearly demonstrate that the nexus of food non-food sectors is determinant in regional growth plans and the particular interdependencies, in every particular region, must carefully considered.
    Date: 2006–08
  16. By: Stephan Marette (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD); Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI)); Roxanne Clemens (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD); Midwest Agribusiness Trade Research and Information Center (MATRIC)); Bruce A. Babcock (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD); Midwest Agribusiness Trade Research and Information Center (MATRIC))
    Abstract: As worldwide consumer demand for high-quality products and for information about these products increases, labels and geographical indications (GIs) can serve to signal quality traits to consumers. However, GI systems among countries are not homogeneous and can be used as trade barriers against competition. Philosophical differences between the European Union and the United States about how GIs should be registered and protected led to the formation of a WTO dispute settlement panel. In this paper we discuss the issues behind the dispute, the World Trade Organization (WTO) panel decision, and the EU response to the panel decision leading to the new Regulation 510/2006. Given the potential for GI labels to supply consumer information, context is provided for the discussion using recent literature on product labeling. Implications are drawn regarding the importance of the panel decision and the EU response relative to GI issues yet to be negotiated under the Doha Round.
    Keywords: geographical indications, product labels, trade barriers.
    Date: 2007–01
  17. By: Sandy Dall'erba; Eveline Van Leeuwen
    Abstract: Studies dealing with the impact of public support on employment have given varying results, depending on the estimation process, sample and type of subsidy. In this paper, we investigate the impact of support from the Common Agricultural Policy and Objective 5 funds on agricultural employment changes in European regions. We use a spatial econometric approach to consider the fact that employment dynamics in one region also depend on the dynamics of its neighbors. Our conclusions raise interesting issues for the ongoing debate on the role of support to the agricultural sector and provide several policy perspectives for the new member countries where this sector still influences economic performance.
    Date: 2006–08
  18. By: Simtowe, Franklin
    Abstract: This study investigates the linkage between attitudes towards risk and adoption. We empirically examine the relative risk premium related to fertilizer-use among 404 farmers from Malawi and examine the relationship between risk aversion on fertilizer-use and the adoption of hybrid maize. Results show that Malawian farmers exhibit absolute Arrow-Pratt risk aversion towards the use of fertilizer. The findings also reveal that risk aversion towards the use of fertilizer is strongly associated with low intensity of hybrid maize adoption and that other than the safety net programs, human and financial capital variables such as age, household size, land size and off-farm income can be helpful in explaining the non-adoption puzzle. While safety net programs such as the free input distribution increase the likelihood of adoption, they are associated with low adoption intensity for hybrid maize. A key lesson is that when considering promoting a technology, it is important to assess the profit distribution associated with the use of complementary inputs and its implications for risk preference among technology users in order to avoid formulating misguiding policies.
    Keywords: Adoption; hybrid maize; fertilizer; risk-aversion; Malawi
    JEL: Q01
    Date: 2006–09–20
  19. By: Di Maria, Corrado; Valente, Simone
    Abstract: We analyze a multi-sector growth model with directed technical change where man-made capital and exhaustible resources are essential for production. The relative profitability of factor-specific innovations endogenously determines whether technical progress will be capital- or resource-augmenting. We show that convergence to balanced growth implies zero capital-augmenting innovations: in the long run, the economy exhibits purely resource-augmenting technical change. This result provides sound microfoundations for the broad class of models of exogenous/endogenous growth where resource-augmenting progress is required to sustain consumption in the long run, contradicting the view that these models are conceptually biased in favor of sustainability.
    Keywords: Endogenous Growth; Directed Technical Change; Exhaustible Resources; Sustainability
    JEL: Q32 O33 O31 O32
    Date: 2006–03–07
  20. By: Luca Di Corato (University of Padua and University of York)
    Abstract: In this paper the theory and practical limits of a voluntary incentive program for the conservation of biodiversity are presented. The design of conservation contracts in the context of still forested areas in developing countries is considered. The aim of the governmental agency implementing the conservation program is to induce the landowners to set aside a part of their land from agriculture conversion, compensating them for the resulting profit loss. The optimal contract scheme needs to deal with information asymmetry on the opportunity cost of conservation and reduces the information rents due to the landholder incentive to misreport her "type". I show how information asymmetry can seriously impact on the optimal mechanism design and may lead to contracts by which types cannot be separated and/or landholders may receive some payments even if they are conserving the same extent of land they would have conserved without contract.
    JEL: D82 D86 Q57 Q58
    Date: 2006–12
  21. By: Christopher L. Gilbert
    Abstract: Value chain analysis extends traditional supply chain analysis by locating values to each stage of the chain. This can result in a “cake division” fallacy in which value at one stage is seen as being at the expense of value at another. Over the past three decades, the coffee and cocoa industries have witnessed dramatic falls in the producer (i.e. farmer) share in rental price. Both industries are highly concentrated at the processing stage. Nevertheless, developments in the producer and retail markets are largely unconnected and there is no evidence the falls in the producer share are the result of exercise of monopoly-monopsony power. The explanation of declining producer shares is more straightforward – processing, marketing and distribution costs, incurred in consuming countries have tended to increase over time while production costs at the origin have declined.
    Date: 2006
  22. By: Naftaly Goldshlger; Vladimir Mirlas; Eyal Ben Dor; Mor Eshel
    Abstract: Numerous cultivated fields are prone to salinization processes, mostly as a result of the use of low quality irrigation water. The degradation of soils in the Jezra’el Valley, one of Israel's most important agricultural areas, is a good example to this phenomenon. In this area, increasing salinity caused by irrigation with domestic effluent water was observed. An increase in the soil salinity is followed with an increase in the soil SAR, that deteriorate soil structure and infiltration rate. The main reason of soil salinization near local water reservoirs is the transition from seasonal reservoirs of winter flood water to an annual water reservoir that collect domestic effluents as well. As a result an increase of the fields water table in the vicinity of the reservoir is evident. This complicated phenomenon emphasizes the importance of testing and mapping the changes in the soil properties caused by irrigation with low water quality to improve the soil and water management in arid regions and prevent the adverse effect to the environment. Soil sampling to determine changes in soil salinity is time consuming. An alternative method is suggested based on remote sensing methodology. In each of the research sites chemical data such as, EC and SAR were acquired from analysis of soil samples and from remote sensing data, using Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR), Electromagnetic Conductivity & Susceptibility (EM). All the mentioned data were applied to GIS analysis. Within the agricultural land, a geo-referenced data base of the changes in the soil's salinity was built, allowing us to map and predict the salinization phenomena for optimal management of the soil salinization processes. The primary spectroscopic results showed that the main mineral found in the soil profile (0-60 cm) were gypsum and sodium chlorite. The primary GPR and EM results showed that there is a possibility to identified buried layers and to observed lateral and vertical changes in the soils profiles.
    Date: 2006–08
  23. By: T Heikkinen; K Pietola
    Abstract: This paper studies optimal investment decision in agriculture under diminishing income expectations. The goal is to study the cost of income uncertainty and its implications to the efficiency of investment subsidies. Investment decision is modelled as a Markov decision process, extended to account for risk. Applying a stochastic programming approach, the cost of imperfect information is evaluated as the difference between the profitability of investment under stable income and under uncertain income. Computational experiments demonstrate that the cost of imperfect information can be high, deteriorating the efficiency of investment subsidies. Also, examples suggest that the optimal timing of the investment can be sensitive to risk.
    Date: 2006–08
  24. By: Escobal, Javier
    Abstract: This Study provides a conceptual framework to study the impact of rural infrastructure investment in market development and in the enhancement of income generating opportunities for the poor in rural Peru. The study uses descriptive methods and regression analysis together with relatively new impact evaluation techniques, like propensity score matching, to understand the causal paths through which the access to new or improved infrastructure services affect the livelihood strategies and livelihood outcomes of rural households. The data sources included in this study include regional time series data, several cross-section household level data sets coming from rural representative Living Standard Measurement Surveys; a household panel data set coming from the same source, together with specialized surveys developed by the author. The analysis shows that there are important complementarities in rural infrastructure investment. That is, even if any particular infrastructure investment (related to roads, electricity, telecommunication, water, or sanitation services) may be subject to diminishing returns, if done in isolation, this effect can be overcome if it is done in combination with other investments. In this way it is possible to get a sustained growth effect on rural incomes from infrastructure investment. The study shows that infrastructure investments reduce transaction costs and enhances the opportunities for spatial arbitrage, paving the way for improving market efficiency. However, the study warns that efficiency and equity gains may not occur simultaneously, because those that are better off in rural areas may obtain higher returns to infrastructure investments because of a larger private asset base or because of a better access to other public infrastructure.
    Keywords: Peru; rural infrastructure; poverty; economic geography; rural roads; impact evaluation; non-agricultural employment
    JEL: I38 D23 R12 Q13 O18
    Date: 2005–04
  25. By: Knut Ingar Westeren
    Abstract: Aker Verdal produces steel jackets for the offshore industry and is situated in Trøndelag in peripheral Norway. The firm has about 600 employees and a yearly production value of about 200 mill. $. The main competitors are in the southern part of Europe, for example Dragados in Spain. The wage level at Dragados is about 50% lower than at Aker Verdal, but Aker has won several contracts in the later years. One reason for this is that Aker has a knowledge component that contributes to the compensation for higher wage costs. The firm wants to analyze how it acquires and develops knowledge capital by looking at: · Identification: What are the central knowledge processes that take place · Measurement: What kind of indicators can be used · Management: How is management of knowledge integrated in the general management of the firm In this paper we will look at a case study and see how that can be understood in a theoretical framework. We will also analyze the advantages and disadvantages of peripheral location and its influence on knowledge creation and development.
    Date: 2006–08
  26. By: Justin Quear; Wallace E. Tyner (Department of Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture, Purdue University)
    Abstract: The federal government currently subsidizes ethanol with a fixed payment of $.51/gallon of ethanol blended with gasoline. Ethanol profitability is closely linked to the prices of corn and ethanol. The purpose of this paper was to develop a variable subsidy based on corn and ethanol prices and then to compare that variable subsidy with the fixed subsidy. This analysis proceeded in several distinct steps: • First, we estimated ethanol profitability over a wide range of ethanol, corn, and distillers grains prices. • This data was used in a regression analysis to estimate the ethanol profitability from the set of corn and ethanol prices. The regression coefficients became the basis for the variable subsidy. • A version of the subsidy that used gasoline prices instead of ethanol prices was also developed. • Administratively, it would be burdensome to have a subsidy that changed every month, so we implemented both variable subsidies using quarterly data. • We then compared the average annual government cost and monthly private profitability using historical data and assuming the variable subsidy and the $0.51 fixed subsidy was applied. When using historic gasoline and corn prices from the last ten years, the variable rate subsidy cost the government nearly 40% less than the flat rate subsidy. Profit received by producers on average is a little less; however, producer’s risk is lower with the variable subsidy than the flat rate subsidy.
    Keywords: Ethanol, variable subsidy, energy policy, ethanol economics
    JEL: Q48 Q42 Q28
    Date: 2006
  27. By: Maria Manuela Castro Silva
    Abstract: This paper addresses the motivations that drive participation in groups concerning water protection and provides a review of the key role collective action plays in accessing and managing water resources. It also analyses the conditions and factors which make such organizations effective in solving shared problems and in faciliting and institutionalizing negotiation platforms. Collective action heavily relies on the social capital existing in a community to accomplish goals and objectives. These social networks allow for flow of information, serving not only to criticize but also to purpose a different course in environmental and particularly, water management. The vital role of collective action and other "major groups" in sustainable development was recognized in Chapter 27[2] of Agenda 21, leading to revised arrangements for consultative relationship between the United Nations and non-governmental organizations which are, indeed, collective voluntary action. The coalition building capacity suggesting the mobilization of civil society in the sense of organized interests can supplement the ultimate responsibility of the traditional democratic institutions according to the implementation of the Aarthus Principles. Modern governance calls for consensus, seeking processes with organized interests, a good culture of consultation and participation. Collective action meets these goals, as offers the chances for environmental effectiveness, contributing to information generation and creation of relevant knowledge. These factors may relieve the legislator, affecting the way in which powers are exercised at European level, particularly as regards the five principles of good governance, namely openness, participation, accountability, effectiveness and coherence. Most problems with water resource management are felt at the lowest levels and changes in water management are required down to the individual action, reasons why the development strategies call for extensive pro-active participation (at different levels, sectors and scales) upholding the principles of subsidiarity. Finally, this paper also highlights the role performed by collective action in increasing advocacy skills and capacity, contributing to strengthening governance at the local level through favoring the enabling environment for water protection and conservation.
    Date: 2006–08
  28. By: Emlinger, C.; Chevassus Lozza, E.; Jacquet, F.
    Abstract: Since 1995, a liberalization process - the so-called Barcelona Process - has taken place in the Mediterranean area. Its aim is to establish by 2010 a free trade area in the Mediterranean Basin. For the moment full liberalization concerns trade in industrial products, but agriculture remains sensitive. Among agricultural products, the fruit and vegetables (F&V) sector is essential for Mediterranean countries, and the EU is their major trading partner. In this context, two questions arise: firstly, to what extent does protection influence trade for the Mediterranean countries compared to other countries? Secondly, what impact would greater liberalization in the F&V trade between the EU and Mediterranean Countries have? Our model, based on the new developments of the gravity trade model, focuses on the difficulties Mediterranean countries face in entering the EU market, compared to other EU partners, considering the relative impact of the different trade costs. The model is estimated at the product level, in a sector which is highly specific: some products may be very perishable and thus particularly time-sensitive. The Mediterranean basin appears as a highly heterogeneous country bloc. Beside the actual level of preferences allowed by the EU, two main elements vary according to the exporting country: its tariff sensitivity and its "non-tariff" trade resistance. Thus, with respect to Euromed liberalization, the higher the tariff sensitivity, the higher the impact liberalization has on trade, and this impact can be limited by a high trade resistance (NTB, logistic constraints...). ...French Abstract : Depuis 1995, le processus de Barcelone est à l'origine d'une libéralisation progressive des échanges de part et d'autre de la Méditerranée. Alors que ce processus a pour objectif l'établissement en 2010 d'une zone de libre échange dans le bassin Méditerranéen, cette libéralisation est pour l'instant assez restreinte en ce qui concerne les produits agricoles. Malgré certaines préférences, ceux-ci se heurtent encore à des protections importantes et complexes, tout particulièrement pour les fruits et légumes (F&L) (prix d'entrée, contingent, calendriers). L'importance de ces produits dans ces échanges et leur rôle dans l'économie des Pays Tiers Méditerranéens (PTM) nous amène à nous poser la question du rôle des protections dans la détermination des échanges. Dans quelle mesure ces protections influencent elles le commerce de F&L en provenance des PTM, comparé aux autres pays ? Plus généralement, quels seraient les impacts d'une plus grande libéralisation des échanges de F&L entre l'Union Européenne et les PTM ? Notre modèle, basé sur les récents développements du modèle de gravité mesure l'accès au marché européen pour les PTM, comparé aux autres fournisseurs de l'Union Européenne, en considérant en particulier l'impact relatif des différentes " résistances " aux échanges. Le modèle est estimé à un niveau désagrégé (niveau " produit ") et prend en compte une des principales caractéristiques du secteur des fruits et légumes qui est la périssabilité des produits. Cette spécificité joue un rôle essentiel dans la détermination des coûts de transport pour les différents produits. Les résultats mettent en évidence une importante hétérogénéité du bassin Méditerranéen en ce qui concerne l'accès au marché Européen. En effet, si le niveau des préférences accordées par l'UE pour les différents PTM est variable, la sensibilité des exportations aux protections ainsi que les barrières aux échanges autres que tarifaires sont également très variables selon les pays. Ainsi, si les impacts d'une libéralisation des échanges sont d'autant plus élevés que la sensibilité des échanges aux protections est importante, ces impacts peuvent être limités par les autres résistances aux échanges (BNT, contraintes logistiques...).
    JEL: F13 F17 Q17 Q18
    Date: 2006
  29. By: Fares, M.; Rouvière, E.
    Abstract: The emergence and the multiplication of safety quality management system within the food supply chain were extensively analyzed in the food safety literature. Some papers deal more specifically with the voluntary implementation by firms of these systems (Segerson, 1999; Venturini, 2003; Noelke & Caswell, 2000). Our paper develops a unified analytical framework of this burgeoning literature. We show three original results: (i) when the mandatory threat is strong, the voluntary adoption of safety measures can be implemented without the need of a cost differential assumption (Segerson, 1999), or a reputation effect (Venturini, 2003); (ii) when the mandatory threat is weak, the reputation effect and the liability rule may induce the voluntary adoption only when there is a "hard" response from the consumers; (iii) when the response from consumers is "soft", a well designed contract offered by the retailer in the supply chain can induce the firm to implement voluntary safety measures. ...French Abstract : Ces dernières années en économie agro-alimentaire, la multiplication et le développement de systèmes de management de la qualité (SMQ) au sein de l'offre alimentaire ont fait l'objet un intérêt particulier. Cependant, seules quelques recherches traitent formellement de l'adoption volontaire de tels systèmes par les entreprises (Segerson, 1999; Venturini, 2003; Noelke & Caswell, 2000). Dans cet article, nous proposons un cadre analytique unifié de cette littérature émergente. Premièrement, nous relâchons les hypothèses d'existence d'un différentiel de coût entre des SMQ volontaire et réglementaire (Sergerson, 1999) ou d'un stock de réputation (Venturini, 2003). Nous montrons ainsi qu'une menace réglementaire forte est une condition nécessaire et suffisante à l'adoption volontaire par les entreprises d'un SMQ. Deuxièmement, nous distinguons deux situations lorsque la menace réglementaire est faible. D'une part, suite à une contamination sanitaire quand la réponse des consommateurs ou du marché est " forte ", les effets de réputation et le " design " de la règle de responsabilité jouent comme des incitations à l'adoption volontaire. D'autre part, quand la réponse des consommateurs (du marché) est " molle ", seul le contrat qu'offre le distributeur à l'entreprise peut induire une adoption volontaire.
    JEL: Q18 L51 L81
    Date: 2006
  30. By: Francisco J. Más (Universidad de Alicante); Ricardo Sellers (Universidad de Alicante)
    Abstract: The objective of this paper is to estimate technical efficiency in retailing; and the influence of inventory investment, wage levels, and firm age on this efficiency. We use the output supermarket chains¿ sales volume, calculated isolating the retailer price effect on its sales revenue. This output allows us to estimate a strictly technical concept of efficiency. The methodology is based on the estimation of a stochastic parametric function. The empirical analyses applied to panel data on a sample of 42 supermarket chains between 2000 and 2002 show that inventory investment and wage level have an impact on technical efficiency. In comparison, the effect of these factors on efficiency calculated through a monetary output (sales revenue) shows some differences that could be due to aspects related to product prices. El objetivo de este trabajo se centra en la estimación de la eficiencia técnica en distribución comercial minorista, así como en analizar la influencia que la inversión en existencias, el nivel de salarios y la edad de la empresa tienen sobre dicha eficiencia. A tal efecto, se utiliza un output que pretende aislar el efecto de los precios de cada cadena de supermercados analizada, lo que permite estimar un concepto de eficiencia estrictamente técnico. La metodología se basa en la estimación de una frontera paramétrica de naturaleza estocástica. Los resultados de la aplicación empírica sobre una muestra de 42 cadenas de supermercados que operan en España entre 2000 y 2002 muestran que la inversión en existencias y el nivel de salarios ejercen una influencia positiva sobre la eficiencia. Por comparación, el efecto de estos factores sobre la eficiencia económica muestra algunas diferencias que podrían ser atribuidas al efecto de los precios aplicados por los distribuidores.
    Keywords: Eficiencia, distribución comercial minorista, supermercados efficiency, retailing, supermarkets.
    JEL: L25 L81 M11
    Date: 2006–12
  31. By: Anastassios Karaganis; Antonios Tassoulis
    Abstract: This paper aims at the analysis of determinants of efficiency of arable crops in a spatial context in Greece. Moreover it suggests policy interventions in order to diminish regional inequalities in efficiency and to raise the average level of efficiency, so as Greek arable crops will follow the new CAP framework which imposes single area payment scheme (SAPS). Efficiency will be estimated within the production function framework using a quasi-production function. In empirical analysis production functions are specified as spatially seemingly unrelated regression equations (spatial SURE). In the paper spatial lag and spatial error specifications as well as common SURE estimations are tested. Data come from National Statistical Service.
    Date: 2006–08
  32. By: Marcelo Pereira Da Cunha; Jose Antonio Scaramucci
    Abstract: Many issues of strategic importance that have emerged in recent years are contributing to the formulation of national policies for promoting biofuels worldwide. In the developed countries, such initiatives result mainly from concerns on energy security and greenhouse gases emissions. Developing countries envisage biofuels as a potential means to improve access to energy, increase income and employment, alleviate poverty, spur rural development, reduce oil imports and enhance exports of biomass products. These interests converge as to render bioethanol trade a unique opportunity for sustainable development. Despite its simplicity and ease of use, the basic input-output (i-o) model does not allow the representation of technology-differentiated sectors producing the same good or service. For instance, in Brazil, sugarcane can be collected manually or via harvesting machines and alcohol can be produced in plants appended to a sugar mill or in autonomous distilleries. An i-o model with mixed technologies was constructed for the purposes of the study. A linear technology is used to represent the sugarcane and ethanol sectors, whereas the remaining industries are characterized by the usual Leontief production function. Activity levels for the linear-technology sectors are set by a scenario analysis, avoiding the use of much more complicated mathematical tools, such as a computable general equilibrium (cge) model. The construction of the database was done in two stages. Firstly, an i-o table containing 42 sector and 80 commodities was estimated for the base year of 2002. Secondly, the sugarcane and ethanol industries were disaggregated from the sectors they appear in IBGE economic tables, based on detailed engineering information obtained from experts and specialized publications. The extended input-output model with mixed technologies was used to analyze the socioeconomic impacts of a large-scale expansion of bioethanol production in Brazil so as to replace 5% of the estimated global demand for gasoline in 2025. The resulting direct, indirect and induced effects indicate that if ethanol production is augmented in nearly 800%, GDP would increase by a factor of 11.4%, equivalent to approximately the entire economy in the Northeast region of Brazil, and more than 5 million of jobs would be created.
    Date: 2006–08
  33. By: Donatella Di Gregorio; Elena Licari
    Abstract: Tourism provides communities with an opportunity to display their region’s distinct and unique cultural and natural assets while creating employment and diversifying the regional economy. A diverse economy is one that can cope with the changes experienced in our current environment. Tourism is an industry like any other and requires sound planning and a firm commitment from the community to make it work. Like all economic activities the benefits of tourism may create social and environmental impacts which need to be managed through a partnership approach and appropriate planning at a local level. Wine sector has shown significant growth in the last decade and the related tourism activity has also increased, particularly in the Mediterranean countries. Wine tourism is defined as tourism in which the opportunity for wine related experiences contributes significantly to the reason for travel to the destination or to itinerary planning while at the destination. Wine tourism has been identified as sector that could be drivers for increased tourism in the Mediterranean region, both by attracting more visitors and extending the length of stay and spending of current visitors. The general purpose of the paper is to undertake a review of existing wine tourism activities, identify areas for growth and make recommendations with respect to an action plan that will develop wine, tourism and expand tourism growth in the Mediterranean region. Historically, in fact, in southern Italy viticulture has had role of great importance in agricultural field. From over 2000 years wine is made by traditional methods and especially in this area have place most of the autochthonous grape varieties. The development of wine tourism in conjunction with the spread of the industry has become important to the viability of regional economies and the industry's many smaller businesses. The policies that lie behind the development of the wine industry have important implications for the development of other industries in the Mediterranean area, notably: - as a model for the development of high-value industries on a sustainable basis in the agricultural sector; - as a model of collaborative development for other manufacturing industries
    Date: 2006–08
  34. By: Danilo Igliori
    Abstract: The role of population growth and migration has been emphasized as a key variable to explain deforestation and land conversion in developing countries. In early studies a ‘Malthusian’ process is put forward to associate the growing demand for resources caused by larger populations in frontier areas. Recent empirical research has also focused on the role of population primarily as a measure for local demand and pressure over natural resources. The spatial distribution of human population and economic activities is remarkably uneven. At any geographical scale we find that different forms of agglomerations are pervasive. On the one hand, in central countries or regions, agglomeration is reflected in ‘large varieties of cities as shown by the stability of urban hierarchy within most countries’. On the other, less developed regions faces a dynamic process where new agglomerations form and develop as a result of frontier expansion. The recent literature on spatial economics has emphasized the role of agglomeration and clustering of economic activities as fundamental causes of an enhanced level of local economic performance, creating externalities that cause firms to grow faster and larger than they otherwise would do. However, very little has been done to examine the presence of agglomeration economies on economic performance of agricultural activities. The Brazilian Amazon is perhaps one of the most interesting regions for analysing eventual relationships between agglomeration economies, economic growth and deforestation. In this paper we empirically examine whether an initial level of agglomeration impacts the subsequent economic growth and deforestation rates in the Brazilian Amazon. We also test whether congestion effects at the higher levels of agglomeration limit these impacts by a non-linear relationship. The regression estimates indicate that there is a significant non-linear association between the initial intensity of agglomeration with both growth and land conversion in subsequent periods. We also find evidence of other factors associated with growth and land conversion.
    Date: 2006–08
  35. By: Andrea Morrison; Roberta Rabellotti
    Abstract: The process of technological modernisation of the wine industry has increasingly become a global phenomenon involving both traditional wine producing countries – such as France, Italy and Portugal – as well as new emerging producers –as the US, Australia, South Africa, Chile and Argentina. At this respect, the literature (Aylward, 2003; Unwin, 1991) remarks that in the industry the process of technological renovation has been spurred by the consistent investment of new producer countries, as California, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, in creating or strengthening research institutions. These efforts have led to the creation of a specialised wine research system. Conversely, it seems that producers in traditional wine producing areas have often been locked in old technologies and methods of production, due to path dependency. The aim of this paper is to shed some light on how old producing countries have reacted to the increased technological competition by emerging producers. In particular we focus on role played by research organisations (e.g. universities, public research centres) and intermediate institutions (e.g. sectoral associations, extension agencies, technological transfer centres) in generating and diffusing knowledge within the industry. The paper is based on first and second hand information collected in Piemonte, where it is located one of the most important Italian wine cluster. There, we have conducted an extensive fieldwork and interviewed several key informants working at research organisations; extension agencies, associations of producers and other associations acting as opinion/lobbying groups. The information collected are elaborated to reconstruct a detailed picture of actors, linkages and processes underpinning the regional innovation and production wine system.
    Date: 2006–08

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