nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2011‒11‒14
twenty-six papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
University of Verona

  1. Local Development and Sustainable Periurban Agriculture: New Models and Approaches for Agricultural Land Conservation By Christopher Bryant; Ghalia Chahine
  2. What drives the global"land rush"? By Arezki, Rabah; Deininger, Klaus; Selod, Harris
  3. Local food systems in Walloon Region (Belgium): definition and trends in supply and demand By Samuel Comps; Claustriaux Jean-Jacques; Vandercammen Marc; Horge Eléonore; Lebailly Philippe
  4. Aspects of Rural Development in Greece: Indicators, Policies and New Opportunities By Polixeni Iliopoulou; Panagiotis Stratakis
  5. Determinants of smallholder farmers’ demand for purchased inputs in Lilongwe District, Malawi: evidence from Mitundu extension planning area By Maganga, Assa; Mehare, Abure; Ngoma, Kisa; Magombo, Elizabeth; Gondwe, Paul
  6. Can social safety nets alleviate seasonal deprivation ? evidence from northwest Bangladesh By Khandker, Shahidur R.; Khaleque, M. Abdul; Samad, Hussain A.
  7. The Macroeconomics Shocks and the Brazilian Agricultural Price Evolution – A VAR Analysis Approach By Humberto Spolador; Geraldo Barros; Mirian Bacchi
  8. Tradable Set-Aside Requirements (TSARs): Conserving Spatially Dependent Environmental Amenities By Parkhurst, Gregory M; Shogren, Jason F; Crocker, Thomas
  9. Land deals in Africa: pioneers and speculators By Collier, Paul; Venables, Anthony J.
  10. Long-run relationship between crop-biodiversity and cereal production under the CAP reform: evidence from Italian regions By Elisa Gatto; Guido Signorino
  11. The Effect of Malaria on Settlement and Land Use: Evidence from the Brazilian Amazon By Shufang Zhang; Marcia C. Castro; David Canning
  13. Economic Integration and Welfare: Manufacturing vs. Agricultural Markets By Hajime Takatsuka; Dao-Zhi Zeng
  14. Payments for Ecosystem Services: Mechanisms to Achieve Desired Landscape Patterns By Parkhurst, Gregory M
  15. Estimating the long-term impacts of rural roads : a dynamic panel approach By Khandker, Shahidur R.; Koolwal, Gayatri B.
  16. Urban Development and Urban Deforestation By Sofia Franco; Antonieta Sa; Renato Rosa
  17. The Use of Forest Resources versus Economic Growth in Brazil: is possible to reach a balance? By Carlos Bacha
  18. Spatial planning for Aquaculture: a Special National Framework for resolving local conflicts By Helen Karka; Evagelos Kyriazopoulos; Katerina Kanellopoulou
  19. The Role of Ethanol in the Brazilian Economy: Three Decades of Progress By Joaquim Guilhoto; Cinthia Costa; Marcelo Cunha; Kathleen Araujo
  20. Local Action Groups - a possible solution to the rural problem of Romania By Ailenei Dorel; Mosora Cosmin
  21. Territory branding as a strategy for rural development: experiences from Italy By Eleonora Lorenzini
  22. The investigation into the energy consumption in some Japanese fisheries and the measures to reduce CO2 emissions By Atsumi Furuya; Masahito Fukami; Harald Ellingsen; Seiichi Kagaya
  23. Investment in Rural Broadband Technologies By Peter Stenberg
  24. Fluctuations in the international prices of oil, dairy products, beef and lamb between 2000 and 2008: A review of market-specific demand and supply factors By Phil Briggs; Carly Harker; Tim Ng; Aidan Yao
  25. The regional economic impacts of biofuels: A review of multisectoral modelling techniques and evaluation of applications By Grant Allan
  26. A capability approach to the analysis of rural households' wellbeing in Nigeria By Oni, Omobowale A.; Adepoju, Temitayo A.

  1. By: Christopher Bryant; Ghalia Chahine
    Abstract: Periurban agricultural territories have had to confront many pressures over the last 70 years, ranging from land development pressures emanating from nearby large cities and metropolis to technological change, to the draw of the urban labour market on farmers’ families, to the consequences of climate change and variability. They are also increasingly expected to provide stable supplies of foodstuffs to the nearby urban markets as well as having the potential to respond to many other urban demands for other functions that these agricultural areas can support. Periurban agricultural areas can be considered as strategic components of urban and metropolitan regions. They have much more to offer to their regional economies and societies than simply food production because they are also support multiple functions, both market-based and non market function. Market-based functions include the production of foodstuffs for the urban market as well as functions related to both tourism and leisure activity. Non-market based functions include the conservation of landscape heritage, and water and biodiversity conservation; some of these can also be transformed into functions that generate supplementary income for the farming families. Some functions serve to strengthen the linkages between farming, farm families and nearby urban areas. For this strengthening to occur, it appears essential that: a) farmers and their families become involved in the development of their own multifunctional agriculture-based projects; and b) the significance of the non-agricultural functions must also be appropriated by non-agricultural actors, such as local government, nearby city governments, community and consumer organisations. These points are illustrated by examples drawn from several countries, including research-action projects involving the two authors neat Montréal. These latter projects, appropriated by the local farming communities, involve local development processes that can be modified to deal with periurban agricultural areas in any political and cultural context. These processes involve the development of new models of agricultural development and relatively new approaches to local and community development. These processes reinforce regional and national programs of agricultural land ‘protection’ which, it is argued, need such supportive local and community development processes in order to be effective.
    Date: 2011–09
  2. By: Arezki, Rabah; Deininger, Klaus; Selod, Harris
    Abstract: The 2007-2008 upsurge in agricultural commodity prices gave rise to widespread concern about investors causing a"global land rush". Large land deals can provide opportunities for better access to capital, transfer of technology, and advances in productivity and employment generation. But they carry risks of dispossession and loss of livelihoods, corruption, deterioration in local food security, environmental damage, and long-term social polarization that led some countries to recently pass legislation restricting foreign land acquisition. To stimulate evidence-based debate, this paper explores determinants of foreign land acquisition for large-scale agriculture. It quantifies demand for land deals, showing it focused on Africa where land expansion is about 20 times the level it was in the past. The analysis uses data on bilateral investment relationships, together with newly constructed indicators of agro-ecological suitability in non-protected and forested areas with low population density as well as land rights security. It estimates gravity models that can help identify determinants of foreign land acquisition dedicated to large-scale agriculture. The results confirm the central role of agro-ecological potential as a pull factor. In contrast to the literature on foreign investment in general, the quality of the business climate is insignificant, whereas weak land governance and tenure security for current users make countries more attractive for investors. Implications for policy are discussed.
    Keywords: Banks&Banking Reform,Emerging Markets,Debt Markets,Rural Land Policies for Poverty Reduction,Forestry
    Date: 2011–10–01
  3. By: Samuel Comps; Claustriaux Jean-Jacques; Vandercammen Marc; Horge Eléonore; Lebailly Philippe
    Abstract: Local food systems are one solution to promote local products in different ways and particularly by bringing together producers and consumers. This paper follows different purposes. The term “local food systems†will be defined as systems mobilizing not more than one intermediate person in a local area, where the exchanges must be monetized and where a relationship between the producer and the consumer is established. Then, a classification of the various initiatives of local food systems will be proposed. Thereafter the results of two studies conducted in the Walloon Region will be presented. The first study was conducted in Wallonia and Brussels in 2010 by the CRIOC to assess consumers’ perceptions and expectations of local products marketing using local food systems. The second one was conducted in 2010 to establish an inventory of local food systems in the Province of Namur. It had four main objectives: to describe categories of local food systems used, to give an overview of products supply, to understand main difficulties encountered by producers and to give benchmarks for the installation. The paper concludes that local food systems provide a wide diversity of selling networks which can be used. However, it is not easy for producers to meet consumers’ needs for local agricultural produce. The paper also puts emphasis on the necessity of including many fields of action to develop local food systems.
    Date: 2011–09
  4. By: Polixeni Iliopoulou; Panagiotis Stratakis
    Abstract: Rural development has attracted the interest of European regional and agricultural policies in the last two decades. This is more evident after the late 1990’s when rural development became the second pillar of Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). In Greece, traditional agricultural programs have given their place to rural development programs. This shift of emphasis in European agricultural policy reflects the change in the way rural development is perceived at an international level. Rural development is no more synonymous to agricultural development and the role of other factors such as alternative employment opportunities and accessibility to urban centers is widely recognized. Greece has a large agricultural sector compared to the European average, although employment in the primary sector has decreased significantly in the last three decades. In terms of rural development great differences are observed among regions which can be attributed to differences in agricultural potential and accessibility to the markets as well as to a differentiated degree of incorporation to international markets. The prospects of the agricultural sector in Greece would not be considered as favorable, especially after the latest CAP reform. Therefore rural development has to be promoted through non-agricultural activities or through some innovative agricultural activities. In this paper a series of indices describing the agricultural potential in the NUTSIII regions in Greece as well as several aspects of rural development will be presented. Statistical analysis, mostly classification techniques, will be employed in order to explore the factors contributing to rural development in Greece. Special attention will be given to the introduction of organic farming in Greece and its potential contribution to rural development. Organic farming is considered as an innovative agricultural activity and it can be a viable alternative for declining rural regions. Finally, rural development policies in Greece, through regional policy programs and the current Rural Development Program, will be presented, with emphasis on the shift from measures for the agricultural sector to measures for rural development. Special consideration will be given to the measures addressed to organic farming and their effectiveness in the development of the sector will be discussed.
    Date: 2011–09
  5. By: Maganga, Assa; Mehare, Abure; Ngoma, Kisa; Magombo, Elizabeth; Gondwe, Paul
    Abstract: The aim of this study was to empirically determine the factors that affect smallholder farmers’ demand for purchased fertilizer and seed using cross section data from 160 farmers. Model solutions, which were created by using Translog Cost Function were carried out by Seemingly Unrelated Regression (SUR). To this end this study revealed that education, field size (plot of land cultivated) and household size have significant negative relationship with the share of fertilizer purchased and positively related with share of seed. Whereas price of output, seed, fertilizer and income of the household are found to be significant and positively related to share of fertilizer and negatively related with share of purchased seed.
    Keywords: Translog; Cost; Purchase inputs; Demand
    JEL: D0
    Date: 2011–01–05
  6. By: Khandker, Shahidur R.; Khaleque, M. Abdul; Samad, Hussain A.
    Abstract: This paper examines the role of social safety-net programs in Bangladesh run by the government and nongovernmental organizations to mitigate seasonal deprivation in the country's highly vulnerable northwest region. Specifically, the paper explores whether social safety nets are limited to averting seasonal deprivation or can also address seasonality of income and employment more generally. Using a recent survey from the greater Rangpur (northwest) region, the paper finds that social safety nets have a positive effect on mitigating both seasonal and non-seasonal food deprivation. The results are robust, owing to the recent expanded coverage of social safety-net programs run by nongovernmental organizations active in the region. But given the annual recurrence of monga (seasonal food insecurity) in the northwest region owing to agricultural seasonality and an overwhelming dependence on agriculture for livelihoods, social safety nets are not a reliable tool for monga eradication. Programs are also needed to promote the income and productivity of the poor through diversification of income and employment.
    Keywords: Safety Nets and Transfers,Rural Poverty Reduction,Food&Beverage Industry,Regional Economic Development,Housing&Human Habitats
    Date: 2011–10–01
  7. By: Humberto Spolador; Geraldo Barros; Mirian Bacchi
    Abstract: The findings presented in this paper come from our study of the effects of Brazilian macroeconomic policy on the Brazilian Farm [product] Price Index using an adapted version of Frankel’s (1986 & 2006) theoretical model. The study examined the connection between Brazilian farm prices and external variables (worldwide importation of agribusiness products, international commodity prices, and foreign real interest rates) and between Brazilian farm prices and domestic variables (GDP, the real exchange rate, and local interest rates).
    Date: 2011–09
  8. By: Parkhurst, Gregory M; Shogren, Jason F; Crocker, Thomas
    Abstract: In the lab, we examine the effectiveness of two land use conservation policies: a tradable set aside requirements (TSARs), and the TSARs combined with an agglomeration bonus. Evaluated by bioeconomic efficiency, our experimental results suggest: 1) TSARs is a cost-effective land conservation tool; and 2) combining TSARS with the agglomeration bonus increases habitat connectivity but at a price—lower economic efficiency.
    Keywords: Conservation; tradable development rights; spatial conservation; market instruments
    JEL: D02 Q27
    Date: 2011
  9. By: Collier, Paul; Venables, Anthony J.
    Abstract: Much African land currently has low productivity and has attracted investors purchasing (or leasing) land as a speculative option on higher future prices or productivity. If land deals are to be beneficial they need to induce productivity enhancing investments. Some of these will be publicly provided (infrastructure, agronomic knowledge), and some can only be provided by ‘pioneer’ investors who discover what works and who create demonstration effects. Such pioneers can be rewarded (incentive compatibly) for the positive externalities they create by being granted options on large areas of land. However, pioneers must be separated from speculators by screening and by requirements to work a fraction of the land.
    Keywords: Africa; farmland; land deals; lease; rent
    JEL: O13 O55 Q1
    Date: 2011–11
  10. By: Elisa Gatto; Guido Signorino
    Abstract: Biodiversity has a prominent role in defining and preserving ecosystem well-being; the analysis of biodiversity effects on agricultural production is well documented. The paper offers empirical evidence on the role of intra-species biodiversity in sustaining cereal production within Italian regions, covering a time span (1989-2007) which accounts for the important CAP policy reforms. A Cobb-Douglas production function that includes both biodiversity and subsidies as control variables is estimated for 20 Italian regions, controlling for both cross-sectional heterogeneity and the dynamic structure of agricultural production. Different estimation methods are compared, including Mean Group and Pooled Mean Group estimators which allow for the possibility of potential non stationarity of the series and heterogeneous parameters across-groups. We find clear evidence of significant long-run relationships between biodiversity and cereal production; moreover, the evidence on the role of PAC intervention measures is less clear-cut, showing a potentially negative effect on production along the period under analysis that can be attributed to the aforementioned policy shift.
    Date: 2011–09
  11. By: Shufang Zhang; Marcia C. Castro (Harvard School of Public Health); David Canning (Harvard School of Public Health)
    Abstract: We estimate the effect of malaria on settlement and land use patterns in the Brazilian Amazon, where potential settlers were randomly assigned to plots in a newly opened settlement area. The random assignment allows us to estimate the risk of malaria on each plot based only on its characteristics. Using survey data, we find that a high malaria risk significantly reduces the probability that a plot is inhabited. Using satellite images, we find that a high malaria risk does not reduce forest clearance or crop coverage on a plot. Non-resident farming substitutes for physical inhabitation when malaria risk is high.
    Keywords: malaria, settlement, land use, Brazil, Amazon
    Date: 2011–11
  12. By: Maria Pepeka
    Abstract: ABSTRACT This paper presents a summary on the evaluation of food quality of corn cultivars used in Huambo. Planted in large scale in the whole area of the Province, is usually processed into flour (osema). Corn is stepped to take the tegumneto and then placed in a pot next to the hot ash for two days or more, which causes a slight fermentation, then it will set foot on the stone (ohanda) or pestle (otchine) of who gets the corn flour (osema). The chemical analysis of four cultivars most widespread in Huambo and two regional (Round and White Horse Tooth) and two introduced SAM3 ZM521 demonstrate and the protein, fat, fiber and ash four cultivars distinguished from each other. This time the corn is reflected in a foodstuff of great importance for the promotion of local varieties is an essential element in fighting hunger and contributes to food security and hence to regional development Keywords: cultivars, corn, flour, food security
    Date: 2011–09
  13. By: Hajime Takatsuka; Dao-Zhi Zeng
    Abstract: In the literature of new trade theory, most papers study the industrial location by imposing the assumption of free transportation in the agricultural sector. This paper explicitly incorporates arbitrary transport costs in both the manufacturing and the agricultural sectors into the Helpman-Krugman-Davis model of two countries and one production factor. The following results are obtained. First, we find a necessary and sufficient condition for the home market effect (HME) to be observed. Secondly, we find that integrating manufacturing markets has contrastive impacts on two countries to integrating agricultural markets. Our results are suggestive for the understanding of various international trade agreements.
    Date: 2011–09
  14. By: Parkhurst, Gregory M
    Abstract: This paper evaluates the effectiveness of five payment for ecosystem service (PES) schemes at meeting conservation objectives when the spatial configuration is important in meeting desired landscape patterns. The five PES schemes are: 1) fee-simple acquisition; 2) subsidies; 3) tradable development rights (TDR) with zoning; 4) mitigation banking; and 5) purchased development rights (PDR) easements. Findings are that tradeoffs exist between PES schemes for meeting spatial conservation objectives. The appropriate PES scheme incentive mechanism for a given region will depend upon economic demand as well as the landowner and landscape characteristics of the conservation region.
    Keywords: Landscape; Spatial conservation; payment for ecosystem services; PES
    JEL: Q27 Q30
    Date: 2011–07
  15. By: Khandker, Shahidur R.; Koolwal, Gayatri B.
    Abstract: Infrastructure investments are typically long-term. As a result, observed benefits to households and communities may vary considerably over time as short-term outcomes generate or are subsumed by longer-term impacts. This paper uses a new round of household survey as part of a local government engineering department's rural road improvement project financed by the World Bank in Bangladesh to compare the short-term and long-term effects of rural roads over eight years. A dynamic panel model, estimated by generalized method of moments, is applied to estimate the varying returns to public road investment accounting for time-varying unobserved characteristics. The results show that the substantial effects of roads on such outcomes as per capita expenditure, schooling, and prices as observed in the short run attenuate over time. But the declining returns are not common for all outcomes of interest or all households. Employment in the rural non-farm sector, for example, has risen more rapidly over time, indicating increasing returns to investment. The very poor have failed to sustain the short-term benefits of roads, and yet the gains accrued to the middle-income groups are strengthened over time because of changing sectors of employment, away from agriculture toward non-farm activity. The results also show that initial state dependence -- or initial community and household characteristics as well as road quality -- matters in estimating the trajectory of road impacts.
    Keywords: Transport Economics Policy&Planning,Housing&Human Habitats,Economic Theory&Research,Rural Poverty Reduction,Rural Roads&Transport
    Date: 2011–10–01
  16. By: Sofia Franco; Antonieta Sa; Renato Rosa
    Abstract: Forests can play a major role in climate regulation by reducing levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Forests also provide a range of other ecological goods and services such as biodiversity and watershed protection and amenity benefits. On the other hand, deforestation and suburban sprawl have substantially changed and fragmented our landscape. While the economic importance of open space and forest amenities and the implications of nontimber benefits for harvesting within the traditional Faustmann framework are well understood, the feedback effects between urban development and forest land changes are not. However, the development of a framework to fully exploit the interplay between urban development and deforestation may reinforce the workings of emission reduction programs if co-benefits from land-based mitigation are realized. The purpose of this paper is to offer a first step towards such framework. In particular, this paper has developed a model of a single forest owner operating with perfect foresight in a dynamic open-city environment that allows for switching between alternative competing land uses (forest and urban use) at some point in the future. The model also incorporates external values of an even-aged standing forest in addition to the value of timber when it is harvested. Timber is exploited based on a multiple rotation model a la Faustmann with clear-cut harvesting. In contrast to previous models, our alternative land use to forest land is endogenous. Within this framework, we study the problem of the private owner as well as that of the social planner, when choosing the time to harvest, the time to convert land and the intensity of development. We also examine the extent to which the two-way linkage between urban development and forest management practices (timber production and provision of forest amenities) contributes to economic efficiency and improvements in non-market forest benefits. Finally, we consider policy options available to a regulator seeking to achieve improvements in efficiency including anti-sprawl policies (impact fees and density controls) and forest policies such a yield tax. Numerical simulations illustrate our analytical results.
    Date: 2011–09
  17. By: Carlos Bacha
    Abstract: This article analyzes how forest resources have been used in Brazil since 1930, in an attempt to prove two hypotheses. The first hypothesis is that the destruction of our forests and the unsustainable use of the remaining forests have always been linked to the developmental policies adopted in the country. These policies, in their turn, have been based on the main economic models in vogue at the time. The second hypothesis is that, even recognizing the ineffectiveness of only adopting policies to regulate and control deforestation, policy-makers have only broadened and sophisticated this type of policy over time (through the forest legislation), without creating meaningful economic incentives to preserve and conserve forest resources. To prove these hypotheses, this article contains a discussion of the importance of forests to a nation and emphasizes that Brazil is destroying them on a large scale in different intensities among the Brazilian states. The latter has taken place despite the deforestation cannot be justified by the need of new farming land in most of Brazilian states. Finally, the article discusses some policies that allow the rational use of forest resources in Brazil without hindering the growth of other economic activities and considering the Brazilian states differences.
    Date: 2011–09
  18. By: Helen Karka; Evagelos Kyriazopoulos; Katerina Kanellopoulou
    Abstract: During the 25 last years, Greece has registered a spectacular growth of the aquaculture sector. The advantages of its coasts especially favoured marine fish aquaculture that developed into one of the most productive economic sectors in the country. Greece historically dominated production of sea bass and sea bream in the Mediterranean and on EU level. This production is mainly export-oriented and tends to be enriched with other species. The sector’s development took place in absence of a regulatory framework on spatial planning of productive activities. Under these conditions important concentrations have been formed in areas that have been proved to be favourable for aquaculture. Conflicts over the use of the coastal area are usual in many parts of the country and aquaculture development is often resisted, partly as a result of past bitter experience but mainly because the farms location is seen as an impediment to future tourist or second home development. The Council’s of the State rulings have overturned many administrative acts regarding individual location permits on the grounds that they were not granted in accordance to the provisions of formal spatial plans. Under these conditions in which all permits risked to be revoked, the Greek producers have solicited and keenly supported the elaboration of a special spatial plan on national scale. The National Framework regulates the spatial organization of aquaculture in both fresh and marine waters. It covers cultivation of any organism, which lives in the water. The main part reports to marine finfish aquaculture but it also embraces provisions on shellfish cultivation, as well as on other types of aquaculture that take place in the country (fresh water production, fish farming in lagoons etc). It proposes the development of a system for the location of fish farms, based on a zoning principle. However, it recognizes the need for individual location in special cases.
    Date: 2011–09
  19. By: Joaquim Guilhoto; Cinthia Costa; Marcelo Cunha; Kathleen Araujo
    Abstract: Sustainable energy strategies require decision-makers in government, industry, academia and civil society alike to make choices among tradeoffs. Within the transport sector alone, ethanol has been shown to be the dominant solution among viable, low carbon options to date, yet questions remain over the economic and ecological impacts of this industry. In Brazil - the largest producer of sugarcane-based ethanol and a country with over three decades of ethanol development – we find a strong basis for evaluating the ethanol industry’s role in a national economy. In the mid 1970’s, Brazilian ethanol production received an important boost with the launch of the “Proálcool†program. The ethanol industry has subsequently evidenced flux until its consolidation in the period following 2000. Over the course of three decades, economic, institutional, technological and environmental determinants have factored in the success of Brazilian ethanol diffusion. In economic terms, price tradeoffs for ethanol vs. sugar and ethanol vs. gasoline played a role in scale-up of the biofuel together with balance of payment considerations. From an institutional standpoint, support for the Proálcool program, deregulation of the sugar-cane sector in the 1990’s and fuel pump adaptations also factored. With respect to technology, the development of flex fuel cars, greater use of mechanized harvesting, and launch of domestic, co-generated, electrical power were key drivers. Finally, in environmental terms, challenges associated with pollution and public health in major cities as well as questions related to climate change gained visibility. In this paper, we analyze a set of input-output tables for the Brazilian economy from 1975 to 2008, taking the above factors into consideration. Deriving a series of indicators, such as multipliers and linkages, we study the evolution of the ethanol sector’s role in the Brazilian economy and its relation to the productive structure of the country.
    Date: 2011–09
  20. By: Ailenei Dorel; Mosora Cosmin
    Abstract: Romania has the highest share of EU rural areas (44.9% ), which generates and maintains a long series of regional disparities. Because of these disparities, the economy faces a number of elements that undermine the quality of human and social capital and reduces the potential for growth: precarious social and economic infrastructure, reduced access to markets and thus to goods, a low level of both economic cohesion and living standards, and a difficult access to education and training. During the communist era, a forcefully reduction of the rural share was undertaken through various means, most often destructive . Even the transition to a market economy has failed to improve the situation because, in recent years, the urban-rural migration flows have surpassed the rural-urban flows making the too large rural share problem to block the structural changes needed on one hand to modernize the economy, and on the other hand for the European integration. When analyzing the use structure of work resources we observe even greater differences, especially on account of population employed in agriculture. From this perspective, the authors consider that the program impact of sustaining local action groups, LEADER+, extends beyond the horizon of the National Plan of Rural Development , tending to a medium or even long run, when the rural problem of Romania can be solved. Thus the local action groups can contribute to urban areas revitalization and development, through the promotion of economic activities in adjacent rural areas in a manner similar to Lösch's theory. The authors effectuate a diagnosis of the Romanian rural problem and its negative effects. In this framework the implementation progress of local action groups in Romania will be reviewed by testing the main factors that contributed to the organization of local action groups in certain regions of the country. Key words: local action groups, regional disparities, economic cohesion, structural changes. JEL classification: O18, R11.
    Date: 2011–09
  21. By: Eleonora Lorenzini
    Abstract: Many rural areas make increasing recourse to the use of territorial marks to achieve a development goal, foster reputation as well as preserve their identity, their cultural, social and environmental resources. Despite the growing interest of the literature on the topic, territorial marks have so far been analysed as individual tools, while in many areas a strategy of territory branding can be recognised. Drawing on research from two Italian case studies, the paper shows which are the pillars of such a strategy, which are the territorial conditions allowing its success and which effects this strategy produces under the economic, social, cultural and environmental point of view.
    Date: 2011–09
  22. By: Atsumi Furuya; Masahito Fukami; Harald Ellingsen; Seiichi Kagaya
    Abstract: Japan’s fish production volume in 2008 was 5.59million tons, it accounted for 4% of world’s production and consisted of catch (4.40million tons) and aquaculture (1.19 million tons). For the far sea fishery, its’ fishing grounds are in domestic and foreign countries’ exclusive economic zone and international waters, since the total production volume of this fishery has been declining, offshore and coastal fishery have become mainly in Japan. In this study, the estimation of the energy consumptions in a kelp aquaculture and three types of fisheries, such as squid, fixed net and gill net, is done for comparison to the consumptions of fisheries in foreign countries. The result reveals that the characteristics of these fisheries’ energy consumptions and the measures for reductions of energy use. Furthermore, in Minamikayabe as surveyed fishing village, the carbon dioxide balance in this village is evaluated. The carbon dioxide emissions from the energy (fuel and electricity) use and the escape Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) from freezers, refrigerators and ice manufacture machines in the village are calculated. Meanwhile, as forests and oceans are carbon dioxide sinks, it is possible to estimate the volume of carbon dioxide stored by woods and seaweed along the coast. Finally, several measures for carbon dioxide reductions are shown.
    Date: 2011–09
  23. By: Peter Stenberg
    Abstract: Internet use has grown rapidly over the last two decades and so has the digital economy’s integration into the rural economy. Connecting to the Internet via high-speed technology such as DSL lines, cable, satellite, and wireless networks increases bandwidth and makes the Internet much more useful to businesses, households, and governments. Rural communities have not been left out of the ever changing Information economy, though there has been an issue of equal access across the rural-urban milieu, but what is driving the investment of broadband Internet technologies in rural areas. We use recently collected data on broadband availability and historical economic and demographic data in our exploration of causal relationships. We use logistic regressions and the geographic levels of measurement are county and sub-county areas. Our analysis, consistent with profit-maximizing firm behavior, clearly shows the effect of population density and per capita income levels have on industry investment and indicate the challenges rural communities have in obtaining and maintaining modern Internet access.
    Date: 2011–09
  24. By: Phil Briggs; Carly Harker; Tim Ng; Aidan Yao (Reserve Bank of New Zealand)
    Abstract: This paper looks at the boom period between 2000 and 2008 in the international prices of four internationally-traded commodities: oil, dairy products, beef and lamb. All are important drivers of macroeconomic dynamics in New Zealand. Our aim is to provide overviews of the demand and supply factors specific to each market and product, thus adding colour to more general analyses of the macroeconomic and financial drivers of the cycles in world commodity markets over the period. For each commodity market we examine here, we set out the structures of the markets and the major drivers of world demand and supply, and discuss the apparent relative strength of each of the drivers.
    JEL: F31 G14
    Date: 2011–05
  25. By: Grant Allan (Department of Economics, Fraser of Allander Institute, University of Strathclyde)
    Abstract: The regional economic impact of biofuel production depends upon a number of interrelated factors: the specific biofuels feedstock and production technology employed; the sector’s embeddedness to the rest of the economy, through its demand for local resources; the extent to which new activity is created. These issues can be analysed using multisectoral economic models. Some studies have used (fixed price) Input-Output (IO) and Social Accounting Matrix (SAM) modelling frameworks, whilst a nascent Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) literature has also begun to examine the regional (and national) impact of biofuel development. This paper reviews, compares and evaluates these approaches for modelling the regional economic impacts of biofuels.
    Keywords: biofuels; economic modelling; input-output; social accounting matrix; computable general equilibrium.
    JEL: D57 D58 R13 R11
    Date: 2011–10
  26. By: Oni, Omobowale A.; Adepoju, Temitayo A.
    Abstract: Rural households in Nigeria have been characterized as poor, and with little opportunity for development. Many studies have equated poverty with well being, however empirical literature on well being is less researched. This paper attempts bridge the knowledge gap in the empirical literature of well being studies and specifically the use of the capability approach in its application in the Nigerian well being context which is not as well researched as poverty studies. The study made use of the Nigerian Core welfare indices survey questionnaires of 2006 to provide data relevant to capability well being dimensions. The dimensions include housing, health, nutrition, education, asset ownership/economic, information flow and security. The first part of the study involve developing indices of well being using the fuzzy set in order to generate a composite well being index by the elementary indicators of the well being dimensions. The second part of the study used a logistic regression to explore the variability in achieving the composite well being index value by a set of Conversion factors. The fuzzy set result revealed that the capability to attain a desired state of well being is highest with respect to asset ownership and lowest with respect to security. The logistic analysis shows that the predicted probability of attaining the mean capability well being level increases for male headed rural households, increasing educational level and age of the head, increasing household size, employment in the public sector and residence in any other geopolitical zone except the Northwestern zone.
    Keywords: Well being; Capability; Rural Households; Nigeria
    JEL: D69 I31
    Date: 2011–08

This nep-agr issue is ©2011 by Angelo Zago. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.