New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2011‒07‒13
25 papers chosen by

  1. Rising food prices, food price volatility, and political unrest By Bellemare, Marc F.
  2. Ethanol Expansion and Indirect Land Use Change in Brazil By Joaquim Bento de Souza Ferreira Filho; Mark Horridge
  3. Can diaries help improve agricultural production statistics ? Evidence from Uganda By Deininger, Klaus; Carletto, Calogero; Savastano, Sara; Muwonge, James
  4. The formation of offer prices in farmland markets: A hedonic price approach By Temel, Tugrul
  5. Yield Effects of Tissue Culture Bananas in Kenya: Accounting for Selection Bias and the Role of Complementary Inputs By Nassul S. Kabunga; Thomas Dubois; Matin Qaim
  6. Are the economic benefits of Bt cotton sustainable? Evidence from Indian panel data By Jonas Kathage; Matin Qaim
  7. Potential of artificial wetlands for removing pesticides from water in a cost-effective framework By François Destandau; Elsa Martin; Anne Rozan
  8. A q Model of House Prices By Jakob B Madsen
  9. New facts for old debates: Farm size and productivity in US agriculture By Temel, Tugrul
  10. Enhancing Web-Spatial DSS interactivity with parallel computing: The case of bio-energy economic assessment in Greece By Dimitris Kremmydas; M.I. Haque; Stelios Rozakis
  11. Manipulating the rural landscape: Villagisation and income generation in Rwanda By Isaksson, Ann-Sofie
  12. Are the U.S. farm wages equalizing? Markov chain approach By Temel, Tugrul
  13. Price setting in a leading Swiss online supermarket By Martin Berka; Michael B. Devereux; Thomas Rudolph
  14. Estimating demand for food commodities by income groups in Indonesia. By Jensen, Helen; Manrique, Justo
  15. The Dynamics of Energy-Grain Prices with Open Interest By Hammoudeh, S.M.; Sarafrazi, S.; Chang, C-L.; McAleer, M.J.
  16. Malnutrition, subsequent Risk of Mortality and Civil War in Burundi By Philip Verwimp
  17. Competition leverage: How the demand side affects optimal risk adjustment By Michiel Bijlsma; Gijsbert Zwart
  18. Competition leverage: how the demand side affects optimal risk adjustment By Bijlsma, Michiel; Boone, Jan; Zwart, Gijsbert
  20. Unfit for Service: The Implications of Rising Obesity for U.S. Military Recruitment By Cawley, John; Maclean, Johanna Catherine
  21. An analysis of income polarization in rural and urban China By Céline BONNEFOND (GREThA, CNRS, UMR5113); Matthieu CLEMENT (GREThA, CNRS, UMR5113)
  22. Property Rights, Land Disputes and Social Discontent in Sudan By Mohamed, Issam A.W.
  23. Access to Improved Water Sources and Rural Productivity: Analytical Framework and Cross-country Evidence By Youssouf Kiendrebeogo
  24. A matching decomposition of the rural-urban difference in malnutrition in Malawi By Mussa, Richard
  25. Disaggregate fluctuations in the US farm output: Testing for convergence By Temel, Tugrul

  1. By: Bellemare, Marc F.
    Abstract: Do food prices cause political unrest? Throughout history, riots appear to have frequently broken out as a consequence of high food prices. This paper studies the impact of food prices on political unrest using monthly data on food prices at the international level. Because food prices and political unrest are jointly determined, the incidence of natural disasters in a given month is used in an attempt to identify the causal relationship between food prices and political unrest. Empirical results indicate that between January 1990 and January 2011, food price increases have led to increased political unrest, whereas food price volatility has been associated with decreases in political unrest. These findings are consistent with those of the applied microeconomics literature on the welfare impacts of food prices.
    Keywords: Food Prices; Price Volatility; Political Unrest; Food Riots
    JEL: O11 Q11 D74 Q34 O13
    Date: 2011–06–28
  2. By: Joaquim Bento de Souza Ferreira Filho; Mark Horridge
    Abstract: In this paper we analyze the Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC) effects of ethanol production expansion in Brazil through the use of an inter-regional, bottom-up, dynamic general equilibrium model calibrated with the 2005 Brazilian I-O table. A new methodology to deal with ILUC effects is developed, using a transition matrix of land uses calibrated with Agricultural Censuses data. Agriculture and land use are modeled separately in each of 15 Brazilian regions with different agricultural mix. This regional detail captures a good deal of the differences in soil, climate and history that cause particular land to be used for particular purposes. Brazilian land area data distinguish three broad types of agricultural land use, Crop, Pasture, and Plantation Forestry. Between one year and the next the model allows land to move between those categories, or for Unused land to convert to one of these three, driven initially by the transition matrix, changing land supply for agriculture between years. The transition matrix shows Markov probabilities that a particular hectare of land used in one year for some use would be in an other use next period. These probabilities are modified endogenously in the model according to the average unit rentals of each land type in each region. A simulation with ethanol expansion scenario is performed for year 2020, in which land supply is allowed to increase only in states located in the agricultural frontier. Results show that the ILUC effects of ethanol expansion are of the order of 0.14 hectare of new land coming from previously unused land for each new hectare of sugar cane. This value is higher than values found in the Brazilian literature. ILUC effects for pastures are around 0.47. Finally, regional differences in sugarcane productivity are found to be important elements in ILUC effects of sugar cane expansion.
    Keywords: CGE, ethanol, biofuels, land use, Brazil
    JEL: C68 D58 E47 Q15 Q16
    Date: 2011–06
  3. By: Deininger, Klaus; Carletto, Calogero; Savastano, Sara; Muwonge, James
    Abstract: Although good and timely information on agricultural production is critical for policy-decisions, the quality of underlying data is often low and improving data quality could have a high payoff. This paper uses data from a production diary, administered concurrently with a standard household survey in Uganda to analyze the nature and incidence of responses, the magnitude of differences in reported outcomes, and factors that systematically affect these. Despite limited central supervision, diaries elicited a strong response, complemented standard surveys in a number of respects, and were less affected by problems of respondent fatigue than expected. The diary-based estimates of output value consistently exceeded that from the recall-based production survey, in line with reported disposition. Implications for policy and practical administration of surveys are drawn out.
    Keywords: Rural Development Knowledge&Information Systems,Crops&Crop Management Systems,Food&Beverage Industry,Scientific Research&Science Parks,Science Education
    Date: 2011–06–01
  4. By: Temel, Tugrul
    Abstract: This study develops a game-theoretic framework to examine the preservation and capitalization effects of government farmland preservation policies. More specifically, emphasis is given to the effects of such policies on the number and type of land buyers, the distribution of offer price, and the mean waiting period. The results suggest that, in the context of the agricultural zoning policy, the final impact on the reservation price and mean waiting period depends on the magnitude of changes in the number and spread of the type of buyers.
    Keywords: hedonic price; Bayesian approach; farm land valuation; government farm policy.
    JEL: Q28 C7 Q51 C11
    Date: 2011–06–29
  5. By: Nassul S. Kabunga (Georg-August-University Göttingen); Thomas Dubois (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA)); Matin Qaim (Georg-August-University Göttingen)
    Abstract: We analyze yield effects of tissue culture (TC) banana technology in the Kenyan small farm sector, using recent survey data and an endogenous switching regression approach. TC banana plantlets, which are free from pests and diseases, have been introduced in East Africa since the late-1990s. While field experiments show significant yield advantages over traditional banana suckers, a rigorous assessment of impacts in farmers’ fields is still outstanding. A comparison of mean yield levels between TC adopters and non-adopters in our sample shows no significant difference. However, we find a negative selection bias, indicating that farmers with lower than average yields are more likely to adopt TC. Controlling for this bias results in a positive and significant TC net yield gain of 7%. We also find that TC technology is more knowledge-intensive and more responsive to irrigation than traditional bananas. Simulations show that improving access to irrigation could lift TC productivity gains to above 20%. The analytical approach developed and applied here may also be useful for the evaluation of other knowledge-intensive package technologies and innovations in perennial crops.
    Keywords: Biotechnology; adoption; productivity; impact; endogenous switching regression; Kenya
    Date: 2011–07–05
  6. By: Jonas Kathage (Georg-August-University Göttingen); Matin Qaim (Georg-August-University Göttingen)
    Abstract: While several studies have shown that genetically modified Bt cotton can benefit smallholder farmers economically, the sustainability of these effects is still unclear and debated controversially between biotechnology proponents and critics. We use unique panel data of 533 cotton farmers, collected in India between 2002 and 2008, to analyze Bt impacts on cotton yield, profit, and household living standards. Results from fixed effects models show that the adoption of Bt cotton is associated with a net yield gain of 24% and a profit increase of 50%. These benefits per acre were stable over time; there are even indications that they increased. Given rising adoption rates, the aggregate benefits grew substantially. We further show that Bt cotton adoption raised consumption expenditures, our measure of household living standards, by 18% during the 2006-2008 period. We conclude that Bt cotton has created large and sustainable benefits, which contribute to economic development in India.
    Keywords: biotechnology; Bt cotton; genetically modified crops; farm survey; household living standards; India; technology adoption
    JEL: I31 Q12 Q13 Q16
    Date: 2011–07–05
  7. By: François Destandau; Elsa Martin; Anne Rozan
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to analyze the implication of wetland construction for the cost-effective design of a pesticide charge. A model is developed in order to show that, for a given target, the introduction of wetland construction can reduce overall abatement costs and can lower the input charge asked to the farmers. This result remains true as long as the cost of constructing a wetland is not too high. A numerical illustration is carried out in order to simulate pesticide regulations in a wine catchment in North-East of France.
    Keywords: Water policy, constructed wetlands, agricultural pollution regulation
    JEL: Q25 Q58 K32
    Date: 2011–06–30
  8. By: Jakob B Madsen
    Abstract: This paper develops a Tobin’s q model of house prices which shows that changes in interest rates, demography, and income are likely to have only temporary effects on house prices while house prices in the long run are determined by prices of developed land, value added taxes, stamp duties, and construction costs. Empirical estimates show that agricultural land prices are a proxy for urban land prices, which, together with construction costs are the key determinants of house prices in the long run.
    Keywords: housing market, Tobin’s q, construction costs, land prices
    JEL: E13 E22 G12
    Date: 2011–06
  9. By: Temel, Tugrul
    Abstract: This study examines the relationship between farm size and productivity in U.S. agriculture during 1982-92. A nonparametric regression method is applied to detect ex-post geographical patterns in changes in farm size and productivity. The estimations show that (i) in 1982 productivity per acre was high in the East, West, and South, modest in the middle part of the U.S., and low in the North, and this pattern remained the same during 1987-92, while the level of productivity continously increased over time; (ii) during 1982-92 farm size remained unchanged, large farms in the middle belt stretching from North to South and small ones in the East, West and South; and …nally (iii) during 1982-92 an inverse relationship grew stronger between farm size and productivity. Furthermore, with the application of Markov chains approach, we projected the above patterns into the future. The …ndings suggest: (i) farms are likely to experience ower productivity; (ii) small and large farms are likely to coexist as medium-sized farms to vanish; and (iii) the inverse relationship is likely to show a strong geographical pattern.
    Keywords: farm size; productivity; geography; inverse relationship; U.S. agriculture; nonparametric regression; Markov chains.
    JEL: C14 Q15 Q01 Q12 R14 Q18
    Date: 2011–06–29
  10. By: Dimitris Kremmydas (Agricultural Economics and Rural Development Department, Agricultural University of Athens); M.I. Haque (Agricultural Economics and Rural Development Department, Agricultural University of Athens); Stelios Rozakis (Agricultural Economics and Rural Development Department, Agricultural University of Athens)
    Abstract: A web based Spatial Decision Support System (web SDSS) has been implemented in Thessaly, the most significant arable cropping region in Greece, in order to evaluate selected energy crop supply. The web SDSS uses an optimization module to support the decision process, incorporating user input from the web user interface then launching mathematical programming profit maximizing farm models. Energy to biomass raw material cost is provided in supply curve form incorporating physical land suitability for crops, farm structure and Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) scenarios. In order to generate biomass supply curves the optimization problem is parametrically solved for a number of steps within a price range determined by the user. The more advanced technique used to solve the MP model, the higher the delay of response to the user. We are examining how effectively we can reduce the web SDSS response time to the user requests using parallel solving of the corresponding optimization problem. The results are encouraging, as the total solution time drops significantly as the problem’s size is increased, improving the users’ experience.
    Keywords: Web Spatial Decision Support System, Parallel Computing, Mathematical Programming, Energy Crop Supply
    JEL: C61 C88 Q11
    Date: 2011
  11. By: Isaksson, Ann-Sofie (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: The aim of the present paper is to investigate whether households relocated to governmentbuilt village settlements, as part of Rwanda’s Villagisation programme (‘Imidugudu’), diversify into non-farm income-generating activities to a greater extent than other rural households in Rwanda, and if so, to what extent the variation can be explained by differences in micro-level asset and meso-level access factors. Despite the programme objective to stimulate non-farm activity, the results of empirical estimations drawing on household and community-level data suggest that Imidugudu households differ surprisingly little from other rural households in terms of diversification into non-farm income sources. The slightly greater participation in non-farm income-generating activities observed among the Imidugudu households can be attributed to regional variation and household characteristics mattering for selection into the programme rather than to asset endowments and improved service access.
    Keywords: Income diversification; livelihoods; villagisation; Rwanda
    JEL: O12 O22 O55
    Date: 2011–06–28
  12. By: Temel, Tugrul
    Abstract: This study investigates convergence in hired farm wages in U.S. counties over the period 1978-92. The time-invariant distribution of wages is characterized using Markov chains. This study is concerned with two questions: Are regional hired farm wages moving in the same direction? If so, are they consistent with the direction of the entire U.S. farm wages? Concerning with e¢ ciency in agricultural labor markets, the study approximates it to the extent that it is reected in farm wages. Time-invariant distributions of wages are calculated for the Northeast, Midwest, South, and West region, and for the entire U.S. The results support the hypothesis of convergence at regional level to lower-than-respective regional average wage. Convergence is the strongest in the Northeast and the weakest in the South. Likewise, convergence to lower-than-average wage is present at the U.S. level, but it is stronger than that at the regional level.
    Keywords: farm wage movements; labor markets; convergence; Markov chains; U.S. agriculture.
    JEL: Q15 Q01 Q12 C21 R14 Q18
    Date: 2011–06–29
  13. By: Martin Berka; Michael B. Devereux; Thomas Rudolph
    Abstract: We study a newly released data set of scanner prices for food products in a large Swiss online supermarket. We find that average prices change about every two months, but when we exclude temporary sales, prices are extremely sticky, changing on average once every three years. Non-sale price behavior is broadly consistent with menu cost models of sticky prices. When we focus specifically on the behavior of sale prices, however, we find that the characteristics of price adjustment seems to be substantially at odds with standard theory.
    Date: 2011–07
  14. By: Jensen, Helen; Manrique, Justo
    Abstract: An analysis of the structure of demand was performed on household data, classified into income groups for urban Indonesia. A demographically augmented Linearized Almost Ideal Demand System was used to estimate the structural parameters of the demand equations. Endogenous switching regressions techniques yielded unbiased and consistent demand parameter estimates for the low income group, which had a large number of zeros for some food groups. Standard seemingly unrelated equation techniques were used to estimate the demand parameters for the other income groups. The results showed demands for the medium-high and high income households to be responsive to prices, income and demographic variables. Demands for the medium-low income households were responsive to income and prices only. Demands for lowincome households were responsive to income and prices of rice and fish only.
    Keywords: Endogenous Switching Regressions; Income Groups; Zeros; Indonesia;
  15. By: Hammoudeh, S.M.; Sarafrazi, S.; Chang, C-L.; McAleer, M.J.
    Abstract: This paper examines the short- and long-run daily relationships for a grain-energy nexus that includes the prices of corn, crude oil, ethanol, gasoline, soybeans, and sugar, and their open interest. The empirical results demonstrate the presence of these relationships in this nexus, and underscore the importance of ethanol and soybeans in all these relationships. In particular, ethanol and be considered as a catalyst in this nexus because of its significance as a loading factor, a long-run error corrector and a short-run adjuster. Ethanol leads all commodities in the price discovery process in the long run. The negative cross-price open interest effects suggest that there is a money outflow from all commodities in response to increases in open interest positions in the corn futures markets, indicating that active arbitrage activity takes place in those markets. On the other hand, an increase in the soybean open interest contributes to fund inflows in the corn futures market and the other futures markets, leading to more speculative activities in these markets. In connection with open interest, the ethanol market fails because of its thin market. Finally, it is interesting to note that the long-run equilibrium (cointegrating relationship), speeds of adjustment and open interest across markets have strengthened significantly during the 2009-2011 economic recovery period, compared with the full and 2007-2009 Great Recession periods.
    Date: 2011–05–31
  16. By: Philip Verwimp
    Abstract: The paper investigates the effect of child malnutrition on the risk of mortality in Burundi, a very poor country heavily affected by civil war. We use anthropometric data from a longitudinal survey (1998-2007). We find that undernourished children, as measured by the height-for-age z-scores (HAZ) in 1998 had a higher probability to die during subsequent years. In order to address the problem of omitted variables correlated with both nutritional status and the risk of mortality, we use the length of exposure to civil war prior to 1998 as a source of exogenous variation in a child’s nutritional status. Children exposed to civil war in their area of residence have worse nutritional status. The paper finds that one year of exposure translates into a 0.15 decrease in the HAZ, resulting in a 10% increase in the probability to die for the whole sample as well as a 0.34 decrease in HAZ per year of exposure for boys only, resulting in 25% increase in the probability to die. We show the robustness of our results. Food and income transfer programs during civil war should be put in place to avoid the long-term effects of malnutrition.
    Keywords: malnutrition; mortality; children; war; Africa; instrumental variables
    Date: 2011–06
  17. By: Michiel Bijlsma; Gijsbert Zwart
    Abstract: <p>In this paper, the authors study optimal risk adjustment in imperfectly competitive health insurance markets when high-risk consumers are less likely to switch insurer than low-risk consumers.</p><p align="left"><font face="CMR10" size="3"><font face="CMR10" size="3">First, they find that insurers still have an incentive to select even if risk adjustment perfectly corrects for cost differences among consumers. Consequently, the outcome is not efficient even if cost differences are fully compensated. To achieve first best, risk adjustment should<br />overcompensate for serving high-risk agents to take into account the difference in markups among the two types. Second, the difference in switching behavior creates a trade off between efficiency and consumer welfare. Reducing the difference in risk adjustment subsidies to high and low types increases consumer welfare by leveraging competition from the elastic low-risk market to the less elastic high-risk market. Finally, mandatory pooling can increase consumer surplus even further, at the cost of efficiency.</font></font></p>
    JEL: I11 I18 G22 L13
    Date: 2011–06
  18. By: Bijlsma, Michiel; Boone, Jan; Zwart, Gijsbert
    Abstract: We study optimal risk adjustment in imperfectly competitive health insurance markets when high-risk consumers are less likely to switch insurer than low-risk consumers. First, we find that insurers still have an incentive to select even if risk adjustment perfectly corrects for cost differences among consumers. Consequently, the outcome is not efficient even if cost differences are fully compensated. To achieve first best, risk adjustment should overcompensate for serving high-risk agents to take into account the difference in mark-ups among the two types. Second, the difference in switching behavior creates a trade off between efficiency and consumer welfare. Reducing the difference in risk adjustment subsidies to high and low types increases consumer welfare by leveraging competition from the elastic low-risk market to the less elastic high-risk market. Finally, mandatory pooling can increase consumer surplus even further, at the cost of efficiency.
    Keywords: health insurance; imperfect competition; leverage; risk adjustment
    JEL: G22 I11 I18 L13
    Date: 2011–06
  19. By: Kamaladin Rahmani (Assistant Professor of Management, Department of Economics and Management, Tabriz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz, Iran); Masoud Behravesh (Economics Researcher, Department of Management, Bonab Branch, Islamic Azad University, Bonab, Iran); Nayere Karegar (M.Sc Student of Economics Sciences, Department of Management, Bonab Branch, Islamic Azad University, Bonab, Iran); Samira Rahmani (B.Sc of Business Management, Department of Management, Tabriz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz, Iran)
    Abstract: Policy-making and appropriate economic planning in every country requires the recognition of its various regions productive capabilities and potentials. This research deals with the status of food industry in the province of Eastern Azerbaijan and the evaluation of comparative advantage in the main subdivisions of this industry. To achieve this, the productive potential of each of these subdivisions has been studied by making use of the ten comparative advantage subdivisions following the rating of the results by the help of the location coefficient index and indirectly has been obtained based on the issuance ability. Finally, the final prioritization of the subdivisions and their status in relation with their comparative advantage for the aforesaid industry by the application of numerical taxonomy has been presented. Ultimately, with the help of the spider diagram, and by due consideration of the results of location coefficient index, the amount of the structural changes of food industries of the province has been demonstrated during the years 2001 till 2006
    Keywords: Comparative advantage, Productive and Commercial benefit, Regional planning, International commerce, Province of Eastern Azerbaijan
    JEL: M00
    Date: 2011–06
  20. By: Cawley, John (Cornell University); Maclean, Johanna Catherine (Cornell University)
    Abstract: This paper contributes to the literature on the labor market consequences of unhealthy behaviors and poor health by examining a previously underappreciated consequence of the rise in obesity in the United States: challenges for military recruitment. Specifically, this paper estimates the percent of the U.S. military-age population that meets, and does not meet, current active duty enlistment standards for weight-for-height and percent body fat for the U.S. Army, using data from the series of National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys that spans 1959-2008. We calculate that the percentage of military-age adults ineligible for enlistment because they are overweight and overfat doubled for men and tripled for women during that time. We document disparities across race, education, and age in meeting the standards, and finds that a further rise of just 1% in weight and body fat would further reduce eligibility for military service by over 600,000 men and 1 million women of military age. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications for military recruitment and military policy.
    Keywords: obesity, military, labor
    JEL: I1 H56 J11 J18 J2 J45 N32
    Date: 2011–06
  21. By: Céline BONNEFOND (GREThA, CNRS, UMR5113); Matthieu CLEMENT (GREThA, CNRS, UMR5113)
    Abstract: The purpose of this article is to contribute to the analysis of Chinese income inequality by focusing more specifically on income polarization, which captures both alienation (i.e. heterogeneity between income groups) and identification (i.e. homogeneity within groups). The empirical investigations conducted as part of this research are based on the China Health and Nutrition Survey data from 1989 to 2006 and indicate that Chinese household income is strongly polarized. After a period of stagnation between 1989 and 1997, the degree of polarization increased significantly between 1997 and 2006, indicating the constitution of identified groups in middle and upper income ranges. Although the level of income polarization is higher in rural areas, the increase in polarization is far more conspicuous in urban areas, suggesting that the risk of social tensions is more pregnant in Chinese cities. The analysis of the sources of income polarization in rural areas shows that the increase in polarization is closely linked to non agricultural opportunities. In urban areas, the emergence of identified groups in middle and upper income classes can be explained both by the sharp decline in subsidies and by the liberalization of the urban labor market and state enterprises.
    Keywords: inequality, polarization, kernel density, China
    JEL: D31 D63 O15 P36 R20
    Date: 2011
  22. By: Mohamed, Issam A.W.
    Abstract: Under the present civil Sudanese conditions, the country endures many hardships which are manifested in economic retraction, inflation, recession and stagflation. However, those are not the sole reasons for the sporadic conflicts that infest the people. Illegitimate property and economic hoardings seem to be inflaming the Sudanese societies. Social conflicts are manifested in simple man's daily complaints to open rebellions. Most academicians agree on one point, that the society endures abnormal conditions. The current paper delves into land disputes in the South Kordofan region and displays anomalies affecting the Sudanese state of affairs. The economic and social structures are affecting the civil society which is drained of the basic available capital and livelihood, land. The study concluded that it is necessary to promote new ways of protecting land rights. If not more civil mutinies will erupt.
    Keywords: Sudan; Conflicts; Recession; Property Rights; Disputes
    JEL: H4 Q34 H41 P14 H56 Q3 P1 N4
    Date: 2010
  23. By: Youssouf Kiendrebeogo (GED, Université Montesquieu Bordeaux IV)
    Abstract: In this paper we address the issue of access to drinking water in rural areas related to the productivity of the agricultural workforce. Considering an agricultural household model as our basic conceptual framework, we analyze the theoretical aspects of increasing the access rate to drinking water on the productivity of the agricultural workforce. First, we show that the increased access rate to drinking water is conducive to agricultural productivity due to increased intrinsic productivity of individuals and additional gain in time for agricultural production. Second, it comes out that the constraints on the access to drinking water may be costly costs in terms of decreased productivity and well-being of rural people. Moreover, the results of econometric estimates do not reject our theoretical implications. On a sample of 27 African countries, these results show mainly that access to clean water improves agricultural productivity. This positive effect is reinforced by the presence of a better sanitation system, even after controlling for country-specific effects and for the characteristics of rural areas. Nous abordons la question de l’accès à l’eau potable en milieu rural en relation avec la productivité de la main d’œuvre agricole. Sur la base du cadre d’analyse des ménages agricoles, nous analysons les aspects théoriques des effets d’un accroissement du taux d’accès à l’eau potable sur la productivité de la main d’œuvre agricole. En premier lieu, nous montrons qu'une augmentation du taux d'accès à l’eau potable est propice à la productivité agricole du fait de l'accroissement de la productivité intrinsèque des individus et du gain additionnel de temps pour la production agricole. D’autre part, il ressort que les contraintes d’accès à l’eau potable sont susceptibles d’imposer des coûts en termes de baisse de productivité et de bien-être aux populations rurales. En outre, les résultats économétriques ne rejettent pas ces arguments théoriques. Sur un échantillon de 27 pays africains, ces résultats montrent principalement que l’accès à l’eau potable améliore la productivité agricole. Cet effet favorable est renforcé par la présence d’un meilleur système d’assainissement, même après avoir contrôlé pour les effets spécifiques pays ainsi que pour les caractéristiques du milieu rural.(Full text in english)
    JEL: Q12 Q52 Q53
    Date: 2011–04
  24. By: Mussa, Richard
    Abstract: This paper applies a nonparametric matching method to decompose the rural-urban malnutrition gap in Malawi. The results show that 90 per cent and 89 per cent of the stunting and underweight gaps respectively would be eliminated if there were no urban children with combinations of characteristics which positively influence child nutrition that remain entirely unmatched by rural children. Further to that, 4 per cent and 6 per cent of the stunting and underweight gaps respectively would disappear if there were no rural children with combinations of characteristics which negatively affect child nutrition that remain entirely unmatched by urban children.
    Keywords: Matching; malnutrition; Malawi
    JEL: I12
    Date: 2011–06–29
  25. By: Temel, Tugrul
    Abstract: This study examines movements in per farm real output in the US counties, and tests for convergence of output at the aggregate, regional, and divisional levels. The estimations are carried out for the period 1982-1992 and for its two constituent sub-periods, 1982-87 and 1987-92. For the period 1982-92, results show weak convergence at aggregate and regional levels. For the first sub-period 1982-87 (the second sub-period 1987-92) weak convergence (strong divergence) takes place at aggregate and regional levels, except the Northeast region showing strong divergence (weak convergence). These results indicate the Northeast region having distinct movements in farm output compared to the rest of the US. This can, in part, be attributed to the type of farming prevailing in Northeast. At divisional level the estimates are not robust neither for the entire period nor its sub-periods. Overall, the conjecture of the neoclassical growth model is supported at aggregate and regional levels, with unclear pattern at the divisional level.
    Keywords: Convergence of farm output; US farm policy
    JEL: R58 R12 R11
    Date: 2011–06–29

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