nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2007‒08‒18
nine papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
University of Verona

  1. Adjustment Options and Strategies in the Context of Agricultural Policy Reform and Trade Liberalisation By Osamu Kubota
  2. Migration, Risk and the Intra-Household Allocation of Labor in El Salvador By Timothy J. Halliday
  3. The Unresolved Land Reform Debate: Beyond State-Led or Market-Led Models By Saturnino M. Borras; Terry McKinley
  4. Measuring Rural Poverty in China: a Case Study Approach By Xiuqing Wang; Shujie Yao; Juan Liu; Xian Xin; Xiumei Liu; Wenjuan Ren
  5. Economies of Scope in the Management of Mulitple Species Fisheries By Singh, Rajesh; Weninger, Quinn
  6. Consequences of price volatility in evaluating the benefits of liberalisation By Boussard, Jean-Marc
  7. Spatial Determinants of Land Prices in Auckland:Does the Metropolitan Urban Limit Have an Effect? By Arthur Grimes; Yun Liang
  8. The role of landscape amenities in regional development: a survey of migration, regional economic and hedonic pricing studies By Felix Schlaepfer
  9. School Nutrition Programs and the Incidence of Childhood Obesity By Rusty Tchernis; Daniel Millimet; Muna Hussain

  1. By: Osamu Kubota
    Abstract: Reforming agricultural policies by reducing distorting support improves economic efficiency as a whole through a better allocation of resources. This implies that adjustment may have adverse effects on some agricultural households and other people engaged in the sector, in particular in the short term. There may also be negative impacts on upstream and downstream sectors and on regional economies that rely on commodities whose prices and production levels fall with reductions in support and protection. Despite pressures to reform to meet multilateral and bilateral trade commitments and to respond to budgetary constraints, these adverse impacts are a major reason why governments find it difficult to make progress in policy reform.
    Date: 2007–08
  2. By: Timothy J. Halliday (Department of Economics and John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii at Manoa)
    Abstract: We use panel data from El Salvador to investigate the intra-household allocation of labor as a risk-coping strategy. We show that adverse agricultural productivity shocks primarily increased male migration to the US with much smaller effects on female migration. This is consistent with the observation that the bulk of households allocated no women to the agricultural sector. These shocks also increased the number of hours that the household devoted to agricultural activities. These results do not contradict each other if one considers the possibility that the shocks had non-monotonic effects on shadow wages during the survey period. In contrast, damage sustained from the 2001 earthquakes exclusively stunted female migration. We argue that the reasons for this were that the earthquakes increased the demand for home production and that most men in our data are not engaged in domestic production at all.
    Keywords: Migration, Labor Supply, Insurance, Intra-Household Allocation
    Date: 2007–08–08
  3. By: Saturnino M. Borras (Canada Research Chair in International...); Terry McKinley (International Poverty Centre)
    Keywords: Land Reform; Debate; State-Led; Market-Led; Model
    Date: 2006–11
  4. By: Xiuqing Wang; Shujie Yao; Juan Liu; Xian Xin; Xiumei Liu; Wenjuan Ren
    Abstract: This paper measures rural poverty in Hubei Province and Inner Mongolia in China. The poverty lines we derived by Ravallion's method differ from the official Chinese poverty lines. The official pan-country poverty line underestimates rural poverty in Hubei Province and overestimates rural poverty in Inner Mongolia. Poverty determinants are estimated by Logit as well as Probit models. The study notes that factors such as living in a mountainous area, lack of better irrigation conditions, a large family size, few fixed assets, few land owned and sole dependence on agriculture as a livelihood source would make a rural household more vulnerable to poverty. On the other hand, a rural household whose members are either better educated or trained laborers would statistically be less poor. The growth-redistribution decomposition reveals that for all the three FGT indexes in Hubei province, income growth contributed much to the alleviation of poverty, while the redistribution or inequality effects counteracted the growth effects and worsened poverty. The poverty incidence decomposition results reveal that about one third of the growth effects had been counteracted by the redistribution effects. This implies that future anti-poverty programs should pay more attention to solving the inequality problem in China. Poverty dominance analysis also helps us better understand the poverty situation. It reveals that rural poverty in Inner Mongolia is more severe than that in Hubei, and that poverty incidence in Hubei has lessened from 1997 to 2003, which are the same findings as those drawn from deriving poverty lines.
    Keywords: Rural Poverty Line, Poverty Determinants, Growth Redistribution Decomposition, Poverty Dominance, China
    JEL: I32 D33 C43
    Date: 2007
  5. By: Singh, Rajesh; Weninger, Quinn
    Abstract: This paper considers the problem of multiple-species fishery management when targeting individual species is costly and at-sea discards of fish by fishermen are unobserved by the regulator. A dynamic model is developed to balance the ecological interdependencies among multiple fish species, and the technological interdependence which captures costly targeting. Stock conditions, ecosystem interaction, technological specification, and relative prices under which at sea discards are acute are identified. Three regulatory regimes, species-specific harvest quotas, landing taxes, and revenue quotas, are contrasted against a hypothetical sole owner problem. An optimal plan under any of these regimes precludes discarding. For both very low and very high degrees of technological interdependence, first best welfare is close to that achieved through regulation. In general, landing taxes welfare dominate species-specific quota regulation; a revenue quota fares the worst.
    Keywords: scope economies, multiple species fishery management, costly targeting
    JEL: Q2
    Date: 2007–08–09
  6. By: Boussard, Jean-Marc
    Abstract: Many computable general equilibrium models have been set up recently, in order to assess the benefits of trade liberalisation, especially in agriculture. Although figures magnitudes differ from one model to another, they cannot reach any other conclusion than positive benefits. On the other hand, historical experience shows that liberalisation, far from being a new idea, has been tried at several occasions during the two last centuries, repeatedly ending in crisis, and hasty return to various forms of protection. A possible explanation could be in the comparative static approach of most liberalisation proponents, and their neglect of dynamic aspects. Especially, because risk is necessarily tied with unfulfilled expectations, it should play a decisive role in modelling. A new model is developed along this line, showing the possibility of a chaotic price regime, which would prevent full liberalisation to be feasible.
    Keywords: globalisation; risk ; volatility ; modelling ; trade ; agriculture ; Doha ; WTO;
    JEL: F17 F11 F12
    Date: 2006–05–01
  7. By: Arthur Grimes (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research); Yun Liang (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research)
    Abstract: Land prices within monocentric cities typically decline from the centre to the urban periphery. More complex patterns are observed in polycentric and coastal cities; discrete jumps in value can occur across zoning boundaries. Information on these patterns within Auckland is important to understand: (a) the nature of Auckland's development, including the impact of infrastructure investments; and (b) the effects of regulation in causing discrete land valuation changes. One such regulation in Auckland is the metropolitan urban limit (MUL); we specifically examine whether the existence of this growth limit affects land prices. We do so in the context of a model of all Auckland land values over a twelve-year period, finding a strong zoning boundary effect on land prices.
    Keywords: growth limits; zoning restrictions; boundary effects; land value gradients
    JEL: R14 R38 R52
    Date: 2007–08
  8. By: Felix Schlaepfer (Socioeconomic Institute, University of Zurich)
    Abstract: Quality of life factors continue to gain importance in residential location decisions as well as location decisions of firms. One such factor is an attractive local landscape. The aim of this paper is to provide a survey of the empirical literature on the role of landscape amenities in local economic change. Following common amenity definitions, we define landscape amenities as landscape features that are location-specific, latent non-market input goods that directly enter residents’ utility functions. Using this definition we identify thirty-nine relevant studies that use either migration or regional economic models or hedonic pricing techniques. One result from the analysis of migration and regional economic studies is that intra-country migrants were attracted by amenities about as frequently as by a low tax burden. Effects of amenities on employment and income are less well established. However, many of these studies used rather limited amenity variables. The results from hedonic studies show that a wide variety of local amenity attributes are partly capitalized in housing prices and that studies on a larger geographic scale are more likely to identify a significant a role of amenities. Newly available land cover datasets and spatial analysis tools have the potential to overcome important data limitations of many earlier studies. Future research may thus contribute to a better understanding of the role of landscape amenities in economic change and to a better coordination of regional and environmental policies.
    Keywords: landscape amenities, migration, local development, hedonic models, environmental valuation, regional economic modeling, land use
    JEL: Q26 Q51 R11 R23
    Date: 2007–08
  9. By: Rusty Tchernis (Indiana University Bloomington); Daniel Millimet (Southern Methodist University); Muna Hussain (Southern Methodist University)
    Abstract: In light of the recent rise in childhood obesity, the School Breakfast Program (SBP) and National School Lunch Program (NSLP) have received renewed attention, despite the fact that they have existed for decades. The SBP, in particular, is viewed as a potentially important component of any policy reform designed to combat the increased prevalence of overweight children given the importance attributed to a nutritious breakfast. Using panel data on over 13,500 students from kindergarten through third grade, we assess the relationship between SBP and NSLP participation on (relatively) long-run measures of child weight. While we find more mixed evidence on the association between NSLP participation and child weight, we obtain a relatively robust positive association between SBP participation and child weight, particularly for white children, entering kindergarten in the `normal' weight range, with mothers of moderate education.
    JEL: C31 H51 I18 I28
    Date: 2007–07

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