nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2015‒04‒19
37 papers chosen by

  1. Managing Risk with Insurance and Savings: Experimental Evidence for Male and Female Farm Managers in the Sahel By Delavallade, Clara; Dizon, Felipe; Hill, Ruth; Petraud, Jean Paul
  3. Food Security and Productivity: Impacts of Technology Adoption in Small Subsistence Farmers in Bolivia By Lina Salazar; Julián Aramburu; Mario González; Paul Winters
  4. Rethinking yield gaps By Beddow, Jason M.; Hurley, Terrance M.; Pardey, Philip G.; Alston, Julian M.
  5. Mandating Food Insecurity: The Global Impacts of Rising Biofuel Mandates and Targets By Timothy A. Wise; Emily Cole
  6. Financial Accelerator at Work: Evidence from Corn Fields By Nittai K. Bergman; Rajkamal Iyer; Richard T. Thakor
  7. Linkages among Estimated Technological Parameters, Production, Supply and Input Demand Elasticities for Agricultural Production Functions By Pagoulatos, Angelos; Debertin, David L.
  8. International food aid to Indonesia, 1950s-1970s By Pierre van der Eng
  9. Price Transmission in Food Chains: The Case of the Dairy Industry By Bonnet, Céline; Corre, Tifenn; Réquillart, Vincent
  10. Water and irrigation policy impact assessment using business simulation games: Evidence from northern Germany By Buchholz, Matthias; Holst, Gesa; Musshoff, Oliver
  11. Monopolistic markups in the Polish food sector By Justyna Kufel
  12. Can Public Employment Schemes Increase Equilibrium Wages? Evidence from a Natural Experiment in India By Erlend Berg; Sambit Bhattacharyya; D Rajasekhar; R Manjula
  13. Effects of Protected Areas on Forest Cover Change and Local Communities: Evidence from the Peruvian Amazon By Juan José Miranda; Leonardo Corral; Allen Blackman; Gregory Asner; Eirivelthon Lima
  14. Weather insurance savings accounts By Stein,Daniel Kevin; Tobacman,Jeremy
  15. Increasing forest biomass supply in Northern Europe – Countrywide estimates and economic perspectives By Bostedt, Göran; Mustonen, Mika; Gong, Peichen
  16. On the First-Round Effects of International Food Price Shocks: the Role of the Asset Market Structure By Rafael Portillo; Luis-Felipe Zanna
  17. Volunteer and satisfied? Rural households’ participation in a payments for environmental services programme in Inner Mongolia By Sylvie Démurger; Adeline Pelletier
  18. Deforestation, leakage and avoided deforestation policies: a spatial analysis By Philippe Delacote; Elizabeth J.Z. Robinson; Sébastien Roussel
  19. Welfare and sustainability effects of dietary recommendations By Irz, Xavier; Leroy, Pascal; Réquillart, Vincent; Soler, Louis-Georges
  20. The Rise and Fall of U.S. Farm Productivity Growth, 1910–2007 By Alston, Julian M.; Andersen, Matthew A.; Pardey, Philip G.
  21. Niger’s 2005 Food Crisis and Child Malnutrition: the Role of Exogenous and Policy Factors By Giovanni Andrea Cornia; Laura Deotti
  22. Economy-wide impacts of REDD when there is political influence By Timothy Laing; Charles Palmer
  23. Public Food Procurement: A Systematic Literature Review By Gianluca Stefani; Marco Tiberti; Ginevra Virginia Lombardi
  24. PMP and Uniqueness of the Calibrating Solution - Revision By Paris, Quirino
  25. Structural Transformation — How Does Thailand Compare? By Vladimir Klyuev
  26. Agriculture in Brazil´s Southeast Region: Limitations And Future Challenges to Development By César Nunes de Castro
  27. Impact of Commodities Transaction Tax on Indian Commodity Futures By Sinha, Pankaj; Mathur, Kritika
  28. Does social class affect nutrition knowledge and food preferences among Chinese urban adults? By Matthieu CLEMENT; Céline BONNEFOND
  29. World trade and regional trade orientation in the context of forthcoming Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership By Elzbieta Czarny; Pawel Folfas
  30. VINOTHERAPY AND ITS IMPACT ON HEALTH ATTITUDES: THE INNOVATION PERSPECTIVE By Malgorzata Rutkowska-Podolowska; Nina Szczygiel; Grzegorz Podolowski
  31. The Sources of Business Cycles in a Low Income Country By Romain Houssa; Jolan Mohimont; Christopher Otrok
  32. Estimating nutrition-income elasticities in sub-Saharan African:Implication on health By Ogundari, Kolawole; Ito, Shoichi; Okoruwa, Victor
  33. On the Use of Panel Stationarity Tests in Convergence Analysis: Empirical Evidence for the EU Countries By Mariusz Prochniak; Bartosz Witkowski
  34. Niger: 2014 Article IV Consultation and Fourth and Fifth Reviews Under the Extended Credit Facility Arrangement and Request for Waiver of Nonobservance of Performance Criteria-Staff Report; Press Release; and Statement by the Executive Director for Niger By International Monetary Fund
  35. SafeTREC Seminar April 10: Creating Space for Bikeways: Road Diets and Parking Removal By Brazil, John
  36. Fertility and rural electrification in Bangladesh By Fujii, Tomiki; Shonchoy, Abu S.
  37. Splitting the Difference: Can Limited Coordination Achieve a Fair Distribution of the Global Climate Financing Effort? By Jonathan Pickering; Frank Jotzo; Peter J. Wood

  1. By: Delavallade, Clara (SALDRU, School of Economics, University of Cape Town and IFPRI); Dizon, Felipe (University of California Davis); Hill, Ruth (The World Bank); Petraud, Jean Paul (IMPAQ International)
    Abstract: Although there is fast-growing policy interest in offering financial products to help rural households manage risk, the literature is still scant as to which products are the most effective. This paper uses a randomized field experiment in Senegal and Burkina Faso to compare male and female farmers who are offered index-based agricultural insurance with those who are offered a variety of savings instruments. The paper finds that female farm managers were less likely to purchase agricultural insurance and more likely to invest in savings for emergencies, even controlling for access to informal insurance and differences in crop choice. It is hypothesized that this finding results from the fact that, although men and women are equally exposed to yield risk, women face additional sources of lifecycle risk—particularly health risks associated with fertility and childcare—that men do not. In essence, the basis risk associated with agricultural insurance products is higher for women. Purchasing insurance increased input spending and use more than savings. Those who purchased more insurance realized higher average yields and were better able to manage food insecurity and shocks. This finding suggests that gender differences in demand for financial products can have an impact on productivity, resilience, and welfare.
    Keywords: risk, insurance, savings, gender
    JEL: O12
    Date: 2015
  2. By: Silvia ZAHARCO (The State Agrarian University of Moldova)
    Abstract: This paper presents a study of the development of foreign trade in agricultural products of the Republic of Moldova under the impact of EU integration. The agricultural sector has been and continues to be, traditionally, the main branch of the national economy. The average share of agriculture generates to12% of GDP; in this sector almost half of the working population works. Thus, the development of the agricultural sector directly affects the living standards of the people employed in agriculture. However, the development of agriculture depends largely on agricultural production possibilities of sale on foreign markets, it depends on foreign trade.
    Keywords: trade; integration; agri-food sector; cooperation agreement; export; import.
    JEL: F15 Q17
    Date: 2015–04
  3. By: Lina Salazar; Julián Aramburu; Mario González; Paul Winters
    Abstract: This paper presents the impact evaluation of CRIAR program, implemented in rural areas in Bolivia. The objective of CRIAR is to increase smallholders' agricultural income and food security through productivity improvements triggered by technological adoption. In this study, we use data from a sample of 1,287 households-817 beneficiaries and 470 controls- interviewed specifically for this evaluation. The econometric approach to estimate the program's impact is an instrumental variable model. This approach addresses possible endogeneity and self-selection issues that might arise from program's implementation. The results present evidence that program participation increased agricultural productivity, household income and improved food security. Overall, this study confirms the importance of considering the role of productive programs as policy tools to address vulnerability to food insecurity.
    Keywords: Technology transfer, Agricultural productivity, CRIAR, Bolivia, Instrumental Variables, Productivity, Food Security, Technology Adoption
    Date: 2015–01
  4. By: Beddow, Jason M.; Hurley, Terrance M.; Pardey, Philip G.; Alston, Julian M.
    Abstract: This is a prepublication version of J.M. Beddow, T.M. Hurley, P.G. Pardey, and J.M. Alston’s “Food Security: Yield Gap” chapter in N. Van Alfen, editor-in-chief, Encyclopedia of Agriculture and Food Systems, Vol. 3, San Diego: Elsevier, 2014, pp. 352-365.
    Keywords: food security, farm productivity, partial factor productivity, technical efficiency, economic efficiency, Crop Production/Industries, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2015–04
  5. By: Timothy A. Wise; Emily Cole
    Abstract: Expanding demand for biofuels, fed significantly by government policies mandating rising levels of consumption in transportation fuel, has been strongly implicated in food price increases and food price volatility most recently seen in 2008 and 2011-2012. First-generation biofuels, made from agricultural crops, divert food directly to fuel markets and divert land, water and other food-producing resources from their current or potential uses for production of feed for animals and food for human consumption. A key policy driver of biofuel consumption is government mandates to increase or maintain rates or levels of biofuel blends in transportation fuel, the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard and the E.U. Renewable Energy Directive being the most prominent cases. In this paper we assess the spread of such mandates and targets, finding that at least 64 countries now have such policies. We estimate the consumption increases implied by full implementation of such mandates in the seven countries/regions with the highest biofuel consumption, suggesting a 43% increase in first-generation biofuel consumption in 2025 over current levels. We compare this to even higher estimates from international agencies. We assess the likelihood of implementation in key countries and regions, which suggests that with reform, particularly in OECD countries, consumption growth could be slowed. We conclude with policy recommendations to reduce the mandate-driven expansion of first-generation biofuels and mitigate their negative social and environmental impacts.
    Date: 2015–02
  6. By: Nittai K. Bergman; Rajkamal Iyer; Richard T. Thakor
    Abstract: This paper tests financial accelerator models. Using a novel dataset on agricultural production, we examine how exogenous productivity shocks arising from variation in temperature are propagated into the future. We find that past weather shocks have persistent effects on land values and productivity up to two years following the shock. Propagation and amplification of productivity shocks are both significantly larger during the farm debt crisis of the 1980s and amongst farms in lower income counties. Finally, we find higher investment in farm equipment and decreased borrowing following a positive weather shock.
    JEL: D24 E22 G31 Q14
    Date: 2015–04
  7. By: Pagoulatos, Angelos; Debertin, David L.
    Abstract: The March, 2015 pdf version is recently-edited from a paper written in the late 1980s. A scanned copy of the paper as written in the late 1980s is also available for download. Students who wish to use their math skills to verify each equation and elasticity calculation may wish to download both versions.
    Keywords: production function, agricultural production function, production agriculture, agricultural production, Demand and Price Analysis, Production Economics, Teaching/Communication/Extension/Profession, Q12, Q11, D24,
    Date: 2015–03
  8. By: Pierre van der Eng
    Abstract: Indonesia experienced growing shortfalls of food supplies during the 1950s and during the 1960s and 1970s it imported increasing amounts of rice, wheat and wheat flour. This paper investigates the role of food aid in this development. In the 1950s,Indonesia received some US PL480 food aid under concessional loans. Despite occasional famines, and the willingness of countries to supply food aid as grants,Indonesia did not request such food aid until 1966. Donations of wheat flour, rice and other food products started to arrive in Indonesia in 1967 and increased quickly since. During the 1970s one-third of Indonesia’s imports of both rice and wheat arrived as aid. Initially donor countries focused on rice aid in efforts to secure shares in Indonesia’s growing rice imports. But their focus shifted to wheat aid, in response to opportunities for them to grow Indonesia’s market for wheat-based products and secure market share. Food aid helped to alleviate food shortages, but it also strengthened the role of the official food logistics agency in Indonesia’s food markets.
    Keywords: rice trade, wheat trade, food aid, Indonesia
    JEL: F14 N55 O19
  9. By: Bonnet, Céline; Corre, Tifenn; Réquillart, Vincent
    Date: 2015–03
  10. By: Buchholz, Matthias; Holst, Gesa; Musshoff, Oliver
    Abstract: To date, studies dealing with the impact assessment of changing irrigation policies predominately rely on normative rational choice models that are subject to rather restrictive assumptions such as profit-maximizing behavior. However, there is increasing evidence that decision makers pursue multiple goals and could be affected by bounded rationality, the extent of which is likely to vary amongst farmers. Against this background, we apply a business simulations game for the ex ante policy impact assessment of irrigation water policies that has the potential to reveal the 'true' behavior of the participants. To do so, we investigate how real farmers from the northeastern part of Lower Saxony respond to a water pricing scheme and a water quota intending to reduce water withdrawals for irrigation. In the business simulation game, the participants manage a 'virtual' cash crop farm for which they have to choose the crop allocation and irrigation applications during several production periods while facing uncertain product prices and weather conditions. The results from the business simulation game reveal that the applied water quota is more effective in reducing the amount of irrigation than the water pricing scheme. Moreover, we find that the participants' risk attitude affects the applied amount of irrigation in the business simulation game.
    Keywords: business simulation games,impact assessment,water quotas,water pricing schemes,irrigation,GAMLSS,zero-adjusted regression
    Date: 2015
  11. By: Justyna Kufel (Institute of Agricultural and Food Economics – National Research Institute)
    Abstract: Agri-food sectors are commonly considered as highly regulated, traditional and of strategic importance, mainly due to the food security issues. Changes in the related market structures are subject of constant interest because of their importance for competition and economic welfare of food producers and consumers. In Poland, a rising concentration among various branches of the food industry can be observed. The main objective of the article was to depict the changes of the market power execution in the Polish food sector and its branches in the period 2002-2013. As a measure of this phenomenon the markups of price above the marginal cost were applied and for their estimation two methods were used, namely the Roeger method involving primal and dual Solow residuals and the method based on the marginal cost of labor. Yearly data for 32 food sector branches and various accounting categories were used in the calculations. It was found that in the analyzed period the markup over marginal cost on average amounted to 10.4% and it was increasing over time. The labor input category seemed to be not sufficient for the markup calculation. The evolution of the monopolistic power in the Polish food sector appears to be associated not only with the business cycle, but also with the sector developments accelerated by the accession to the EU. Moreover, the differences in results for the branches indicate a considerable heterogeneity in the Polish food industry companies pricing practices.
    Keywords: markups fluctuations; Polish food sector; market power
    JEL: L11 L66
    Date: 2015–04
  12. By: Erlend Berg; Sambit Bhattacharyya; D Rajasekhar; R Manjula
    Abstract: We estimate the impact of the Indian government’s major rural public works programme, the National Rural Employment Guarantee (NREG), on agricultural wages. The rollout of NREG in three phases is used to identify difference-in-difference estimates of the programme effect. Using monthly wage data from the period 2000-2011 for a panel of 209 districts across 18 Indian states, we find that on average NREG boosts the growth rate of real daily agricultural wages 4.8 per cent per year. The effect is concentrated in some states and in the agricultural season. The effect appears to be gender-neutral and biased towards unskilled labour. We argue that rural public employment programmes constitute a potentially important anti-poverty policy tool.
    Keywords: public works; workfare; agricultural wages; NREG; India
    Date: 2014–01
  13. By: Juan José Miranda; Leonardo Corral; Allen Blackman; Gregory Asner; Eirivelthon Lima
    Abstract: Protected areas are a cornerstone of forest conservation in developing countries. Yet we know little about their effects on forest cover change or the socioeconomic status of local communities, and even less about the relationship between these effects. This paper assesses whether 'win-win' scenarios are possible-that is, whether protected areas can both stem forest cover change and alleviate poverty. We examine protected areas in the Peruvian Amazon using high-resolution satellite images and household-level survey data for the early 2000s. To control for protected areas nonrandom siting, we rely on quasi-experimental (matching) methods. We find that the average protected area reduces forest cover change. We do not find a robust effect on local communities. Protected areas that allow sustainable extractive activities are more effective in reducing forest cover change but less effective in delivering win-win outcomes.
    Keywords: Land management  & registration, Poverty, Biodiversity conservation, Environment & Natural Resources - Biodiversity & Natural Resources Management, Deforestation, Quasi-experimental methods
    Date: 2014–11
  14. By: Stein,Daniel Kevin; Tobacman,Jeremy
    Abstract: Better insurance against rainfall risk could improve the security of hundreds of millions of agricultural households around the world. However, customers have shown little demand for stand-alone insurance products. This paper theoretically and experimentally analyzes an innovative financial product called a Weather Insurance Savings Account (WISA), which combines savings and rainfall insurance. The paper uses a standard model of intertemporal insurance demand to study how customers'demand for a WISA varies with the amount of insurance offered. A laboratory experiment is then used to elicit participants'valuations of pure insurance, pure savings, and intermediate WISA types. Contrary to the standard model, within-subjects comparisons show that many participants prefer both pure insurance and pure savings to any interior mixture of the two, suggesting that market demand for a WISA is likely to be low. Additional experimental and observational evidence distinguishes between several alternative explanations. One possibility that survives the additional tests is diminishing sensitivity to losses, as in prospect theory.
    Keywords: Debt Markets,Financial Intermediation,Insurance&Risk Mitigation,Hazard Risk Management,Emerging Markets
    Date: 2015–04–08
  15. By: Bostedt, Göran (CERE); Mustonen, Mika (Luke); Gong, Peichen (CERE)
    Abstract: Woody biomass is the largest source of renewable energy in Europe and the expected increase in demand for wood was the stimulus for writing this paper. We discuss the economic effects of biophysical capacity limits in forest yield from a partial equilibrium perspective. Opportunities to increase the supply of forest biomass in the short- and long-term are discussed, as well as environmental side effects of intensive forest management. Focusing on northern Europe, national estimates of potential annual fellings and the corresponding potential amounts, simulated by the European Forest Information Scenario model (the EFISCEN model) are then resented, as well as reported fellings. For the region as a whole, there seems to be substantial unused biophysical potential, although recent data from some countries indicate underestimated annual felling rates. There is a need to discuss strategies to ensure that demand for wood resources in northern Europe can be accommodated without large price increases. However, using a larger proportion of the biophysical potential in northern Europe than at present will entail trade-offs with environmental and social values, which means that strategies are needed to protect and account for all the benefits of all forms of ecosystem services.
    Keywords: Forest biomass; biophysical capacity; intensive forest management; European Forest Institute
    JEL: Q23
    Date: 2015–03–31
  16. By: Rafael Portillo; Luis-Felipe Zanna
    Abstract: We develop a tractable small open-economy model to study the first-round effects of international food price shocks in developing countries. We define first-round effects as changes in headline inflation that, holding core inflation constant, help implement relative price adjustments. The model features three goods (food, a generic traded good and a non-traded good), varying degrees of tradability of the food basket, and alternative international asset market structures (complete and incomplete markets, and financial autarky). First-round effects depend crucially on the asset market structure and the different transmission mechanisms they trigger. Under complete markets, inter-temporal substitution prevails, making the inflationary impact of international food prices proportional to the food share in consumption, which in developing economies is typically large. Under financial autarky, the income channel is dominant, and first-round effects are instead proportional to the country's food balance—the difference between the country's food endowment and its consumption—which in developing countries is typically small. The latter result holds regardless of the degree of food tradability. Incomplete markets yield a combination of the two extremes. Our results cast some doubt on the view that international food price shocks are inherently inflationary in developing countries.
    Keywords: Food prices;Commodity price shocks;Inflation;Monetary policy;Developing countries;Econometric models;Food Price Shocks; First-Round Effects; Developing Countries; New-Keynesian Models; Asset Market Structure.
    Date: 2015–02–23
  17. By: Sylvie Démurger (Université de Lyon, F-69007, France; CNRS, GATE Lyon St Etienne, 93, Chemin des Mouilles, F-69130, Ecully, France); Adeline Pelletier (The Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science, Houghton Street, London, WC2A 2AE, United Kingdom ; Instituto de Empresa – IE University, María de Molina, 31 Bis, 28006 Madrid, Spain)
    Abstract: Using survey data from Inner Mongolia, this paper explores the role of stakeholder engagement in the implementation of the Sloping Land Conversion Programme (SLCP), a payments for environmental services programme designed to restore forest in degraded land. Based on the idea that volunteerism and satisfaction with the programme’s outcome are two important components of the programme’s viability, we successively analyse the intensity of households’ participation in the programme and their reported satisfaction with its economic achievement, which we relate to their stated volunteerism. We show that households’ participation intensity in the SLCP is primarily driven by land and location characteristics, and that these findings hold true whether or not the households voluntarily enrolled in the programme. Moreover, as far as participants’ satisfaction can be interpreted as an indicator of potential long-term support for the programme, our findings also support plausible sustainability for the programme.
    Keywords: Payments for environmental services, Sloping Land Conversion Programme, Household participation, Life satisfaction, China
    JEL: Q15 Q57 Q58 O53
    Date: 2015
  18. By: Philippe Delacote; Elizabeth J.Z. Robinson; Sébastien Roussel
    Abstract: This paper analyses the impact of several avoided deforestation policies within a patchy forested landscape. Central is the idea that deforestation choices in one area influence deforestation decisions in nearby patches. We explore the interplay between forest landscapes comprising heterogeneous patches, localised spatial displacement, and avoided deforestation policies. Avoided deforestation policies at a landscape level are respectively: two Payments for Environmental Services (PES) policies, one focused on deforestation hotspots, the second being equally available to all agents; a conservation area; and, an agglomeration bonus. We demonstrate how the "best" policy, in terms of reduced leakage, depends on landscape heterogeneity. Agglomeration bonuses are shown to be more effective where there is less landscape heterogeneity, whilst conservation areas are most effective where there is more spatial heterogeneity.
    Keywords: Avoided deforestation, Leakage, Payments for environmental services, Conservation area, Spatial analysis
    Date: 2015
  19. By: Irz, Xavier; Leroy, Pascal; Réquillart, Vincent; Soler, Louis-Georges
    Abstract: The paper develops a framework combining a model of rational behaviour under dietary constraints, an epidemiological model of diet-related mortality, and a life-cycle-analysis model of environmental impact, which permits the ex-ante assessment of dietary recommendations in multiple sustainability dimensions (i.e., taste cost, welfare effect, deaths avoided, reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and acidification). It is applied to compare in a French context the relative effects and efficiency of six popular sustainable diet recommendations. The results confirm the synergies between the health and environmental dimensions: healthy-eating recommendations usually have a positive effect on the environment, although some exceptions exist. Most of the sustainable diet recommendations appear highly cost-effective, but those most commonly promoted on health grounds (e.g., targeting consumption of salt, fruits and vegetables and saturated fat) rank highest in terms of overall efficiency. Moreover, the valuation of benefits indicates that in most cases health benefits are significantly larger than environmental benefits. Overall, the analysis reveals some under-investment in the promotion of sustainable diet recommendations in France. The general lack of enthusiasm in policy circles for informational measures promoting behavioural change may reflect unrealistic expectations about the speed and magnitude of dietary change rather than an objective assessment of the efficiency of those measures.
    Keywords: food choice; rationing; norms; healthy; nutrition; cost-benefit
    JEL: D1 D6 I1
    Date: 2015–03
  20. By: Alston, Julian M.; Andersen, Matthew A.; Pardey, Philip G.
    Abstract: Some studies have reported a slowdown in U.S. farm productivity growth, but the prevalent view among economists is to reject or downplay the slowdown hypothesis, implying that the rates of productivity growth experienced over the past half century can be projected forward. We set out to resolve this issue, which matters both for understanding the past and anticipating the future. Using newly compiled multifactor and partial-factor productivity estimates, developed for the purpose, we examine changes in the pattern of U.S. agricultural productivity growth over the past century. We detect sizable and significant slowdowns in the rate of productivity growth. Across the 48 contiguous states for which we have very detailed data for 1949–2007, U.S. multifactor productivity (MFP) growth averaged just 1.18 percent per year during 1990–2007 compared with 2.02 percent per year for the period 1949–1990. MFP in 44 of the 48 states has been growing at a statistically slower rate since 1990. Using a longer-run national series, since 1990 productivity growth has slowed compared with its longer-run growth rate, which averaged 1.52 percent per year for the entire period, 1910–2007. More subtly, the historically rapid rates of MFP growth during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s can be seen as an aberration relative to the long-run trend. A cubic time-trend model fits the data very well, with an inflection around 1962. We speculate that a wave of technological progress through the middle of the twentieth century—reflecting the progressive adoption of various mechanical innovations, improved crop varieties, synthetic fertilizers and other chemicals, each in a decades long process—contributed to a sustained surge of faster-than-normal productivity growth throughout the third quarter of the century. A particular feature of this process was to move people off farms, a one-time transformation of agriculture that was largely completed by 1980.
    Keywords: Production Economics, Productivity Analysis,
    Date: 2015–01
  21. By: Giovanni Andrea Cornia (University of Florence); Laura Deotti (Save the Children Italia)
    Abstract: Between March and August 2005 Niger was hit by a doubling of millet prices and a sharp rise in the number of severely malnourished children admitted to feeding centres. The extent and causes of such crisis remain controversial. The paper reviews the evidence in this regard in the light of the main famine theories. It concludes that the decline in food output recorded at the end of 2004 explains little of the food crisis which was due to the entitlements failure of several household groups, the malfunctioning of the regional and domestic millet markets, and policy mistakes in the fields of food security, food relief and health financing.
    Keywords: child malnutrition, food prices, famine, food security, public policy failure
    JEL: I O Q Q
    Date: 2015–03
  22. By: Timothy Laing; Charles Palmer
    Abstract: National-level strategies for reducing emissions from deforestation and degradation (REDD), financed by international transfers, have begun to emerge. A three-sector model is developed to explore the economy-wide effects of two policies implemented by a government participating in REDD that differ in how they bring together incentives and benefit sharing: an incentive payment scheme where these are intrinsically linked and taxes where they are separated. Two sectors utilise forest as an input to production, one in which forest is substitutable for labour, producing a carbon externality, and one in which forest and labour are complements and where forest is used sustainably. Two important effects determine model outcomes. First, the government factors in general equilibrium effects when determining the efficient payment level. This implies that the level of international transfers is not fully passed through to the forest-using sectors. Second, even though the sustainable sector receives no incentive payment it can increase in size through the effect of REDD payments on markets. With political influence, where incentives and benefit sharing are linked the forest-using sectors may lobby for lower payment rates for themselves in order to create a larger international transfer. Where there is a separation between incentives and benefit-sharing this effect disappears. The findings indicate that REDD may be less cost-effective than envisioned at the international level.
    Keywords: REDD; political influence; general equilibrium; climate change; sustainable forest management
    JEL: Q15
    Date: 2015
  23. By: Gianluca Stefani (Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa); Marco Tiberti (Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa); Ginevra Virginia Lombardi (Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa)
    Abstract: The use by governments of their purchasing power to achieve social objectives is a practice that dates back to the 19th centuries when regulations were issued in both the USA and England establishing fair wages or maximum working hours per day for firms working under public contracts (McCrudden,2004). Public food procurement (PFP) is another example of how a policy instrument has been used to “link” different objectives at once. We attempted to undertake a first systematic review of the scientific literature that deals with PFP. The first striking evidence is that the number of papers per year shows an almost exponential growth during the last decade providing support to the relevance of this review. Differently from the literature on Public procurement where the themes of contracting and cost minimisation are prevalent, the literature on PFP is centred on the concepts of localisation and structured demand and its impacts on food chain actors as well as citizen-consumers and on sustainability at large. We provide a conceptual scheme of the PFP literature largely based on the concept of linkage that has been first proposed in law and regulation studies and is declined in a rather specific fashion in this field of public procurement.
    Keywords: Public procurement, Food, Sustainability, Health
    JEL: H42 I38 M21
    Date: 2015
  24. By: Paris, Quirino
    Abstract: This paper demonstrates the existence of a unique solution of the PMP problem when both observed output quantities and limiting input prices are taken as calibrating benchmarks. This version of PMP avoids the use of a user-determined small positive number ε originally introduced for guaranteeing that the dual (shadow) price of binding input constraints be positive. Furthermore, the paper shows how to obtain endogenous output supply and input demand elasticities that match available information about them in the form of previously estimated parameters for an entire region or sector. The framework is applied to a sample of farms also for the case that admits no production for some of the crop activities. The calibrating solution is very close to the observed values of output quantities and input prices. The calibrating model does not use the matrix of fixed technical coefficient and reproduces identical calibrating solutions.
    Keywords: positive mathematical programming, solution uniqueness, supply elasticities, calibrating model, Productivity Analysis, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods, C6,
    Date: 2015–04–02
  25. By: Vladimir Klyuev
    Abstract: Thailand stands out in international comparison as a country with a high dispersion of productivity across sectors. It has especially low labor productivity in agriculture—a sector that employs a much larger share of the population than is typical for a country at Thailand’s level of income. This suggests large potential productivity gains from labor reallocation across sectors, but that process—which made a significant contribution to Thailand’s growth in the past—appears to have stalled lately. This paper establishes these facts and applies a simple model to discuss possible explanations. The reasons include a gap between the skills possessed by rural workers and those required in the modern sectors; the government’s price support programs for several agricultural commodities, particularly rice; and the uniform minimum wage. At the same time, agriculture plays a useful social and economic role as the employer of last resort. The paper makes a number of policy recommendations aimed at facilitating structural transformation in the Thai economy.
    Keywords: Labor productivity;Thailand;Agricultural sector;Migrant labor;Nonmetropolitan areas;structural transformation; industrialization; agricultural price support
    Date: 2015–03–04
  26. By: César Nunes de Castro
    Abstract: Much of the recent dynamism of the Brazilian agricultural sector occurred in activities developed in Brazil´s South, Southeast and Midwest regions. Specifically, the Southeast region was responsible in 2006 for approximately 34% of the value of agricultural production according to data from the 2006 Agricultural Census. The aim of this study is to assess the recent situation of agriculture in the Southeast, based on data from the 2006 Agricultural Census. Based on this diagnosis, the study aims to identify constraints to agricultural development in the region and discuss measures that can contribute to the expansion of regional agricultural production with the generation of jobs and income for the population. Among these may be mentioned some measures: improvement in logistics infrastructure; social development of rural areas through mechanisms of generating income for family farmers; the agricultural research in the region needs to provide solutions for further development of farming, promotion of productive associations, among others. Grande parte do dinamismo recente do setor agropecuário brasileiro ocorreu em atividades agropecuárias desenvolvidas nas regiões Sul, Sudeste e Centro-Oeste. Especificamente, a região Sudeste foi responsável em 2006 por aproximadamente 34% do valor da produção agropecuária de acordo com dados do Censo Agropecuário 2006. O objetivo deste estudo é avaliar a situação recente da agricultura na região Sudeste, com base nos dados do Censo Agropecuário 2006. A partir desse diagnóstico, o estudo objetiva identificar limitações ao desenvolvimento da agricultura na região e debater medidas que possam contribuir para a ampliação da produção agrícola regional com geração de empregos e renda para a população. Entre essas medidas algumas podem ser citadas: melhoria na infraestrutura logística; desenvolvimento social do meio rural por meio de mecanismos de geração de renda para os agricultores familiares; e a rede de pesquisa e inovação agropecuária na região precisará fornecer soluções para o desenvolvimento da atividade agropecuária como um todo num cenário de crescente escassez de determinados recursos naturais essenciais para a atividade, como provavelmente será o caso da água, a promoção do associativismo produtivo, entre outros.
    Date: 2015–01
  27. By: Sinha, Pankaj; Mathur, Kritika
    Abstract: The Commodity Futures Market is an instrument to achieve price discovery of commodities. The Government of India introduced the Commodities Transaction Tax of 0.01 per cent payable on seller for derivative transactions on 1 July 2013. This tax in line with the earlier tax imposed on transactions in the Securities Market, the Securities Transaction Tax. The difference between the two taxes (STT and CTT) in India is that STT is imposed on both buyers and sellers whereas CTT is levied on non-farm commodity derivatives and the tax is payable by the seller. The aim of imposition of these taxes is to reduce the price volatility and increase tax revenue, whether it will actually be able to achieve the objectives is debatable. It is debatable since the levy of the tax adversely affects the traded volume of the contracts. Currently, the CTT is applicable to non-farm commodity derivatives traded in commodity exchanges of India. The current study uses bootstrap methodology to assess the impact of commodities transaction tax on the trading volume on commodity exchange (overall) and trading volume of chosen commodities. A first order autocorrelation model is also utilised to study the impact of the imposition of CTT on returns and volatility of commodity portfolios.
    Keywords: Commodity Futures, tax, trading volume, portfolios
    JEL: G12 Q02
    Date: 2015–02–16
  28. By: Matthieu CLEMENT; Céline BONNEFOND
    Abstract: The purpose of this article is to analyse the influence of social class on nutrition knowledge and food preferences among Chinese urban adults with an emphasis on the middle class. The empirical investigations conducted as part of this research are based on data from the China Health and Nutrition Survey for 2009. First, we propose a multidimensional definition of social class that combines income, occupation and education to highlight the heterogeneity of the Chinese middle class. We identify four distinct groups: the elderly and inactive middle class, the old middle class, the lower middle class and the new middle class. In a second step, we assess the influence of social class on nutrition knowledge and food preference indices. Our results show that adults belonging to the elderly and inactive middle class and to the new middle class have better nutrition knowledge and healthier food preferences than their poorer counterparts.
    Keywords: nutrition knowledge, food preferences, social stratification, middle class, China
    JEL: I12 O53 Z13
    Date: 2015–04
  29. By: Elzbieta Czarny (Warsaw School of Economics); Pawel Folfas (Warsaw School of Economics)
    Abstract: We analyse potential consequences of the forthcoming Trade and Investment Partnership between the European Union and the United States (TTIP) for trade orientation of both partners. We do it with the short analysis of the characteristics of the third wave of regionalism and the TTIP position in this process as well as the dominant role of the EU and the U.S. in the world economy – especially – in the world trade. Next we study trade orientation of the hypothetical region created in result of TTIP. We use regional trade introversion index (RTII) to analyze trade between the EU and the U.S. that has taken place until now to get familiar with the potential changes caused by liberalization of trade between both partners. We analyze RTII for mutual trade of the EU and the U.S. than we apply disaggregated data to analyze and compare selected partial RTII (e.g. for trade in final and intermediate goods as well as goods produced in the main sectors of economy like agriculture or manufacturing). The analysis of the TTIP region’s orientation of trade based on the historical data from the period 1999-2012 revealed several conclusions. Nowadays trade between the EU and the U.S. is constrained by the protection applied by both partners. Trade liberalization constituting one necessary part of TTIP will surely help to intensify this trade. Of special concern is trade with agricultural products which is most constrained and hardly will be fully liberalized even in a framework of TTIP. Simultaneously, both parties are even now trading relatively intensively with intermediaries, which are often less protected than the average of the economy for the sake of development of final goods’ production. The manufactured goods are as well relatively often traded, mainly in consequence of their poor protection after many successful liberalization steps in the framework of GATT/WTO. Consequently, we point out that in many respects the TTIP will be important not only for its participants but for the whole world economy as well. TTIP appears to be an economic and political project with serious consequences for the world economy and politics.
    Keywords: international trade, the European Union, the United States, TTIP
    JEL: F14 F15
    Date: 2015–04
  30. By: Malgorzata Rutkowska-Podolowska (Wroclaw University of Technology); Nina Szczygiel (University of Aveiro); Grzegorz Podolowski (Gestamp Wroc³aw sp. Z o.o.)
    Abstract: Evidence from research has not only excluded negative consequence related to moderate consumption of wine, but associated consumption of skin, juice and seeds of grapes in any stage with a protective impact on health. Compounds of wine demonstrate anti-cancer, antioxidant and a defensive for the cardiovascular system results. The “French paradox” proves that the French suffer from 40% less heart attacks than the Americans consuming 30% more fat what is due to diet including regular modest amounts of wine. The central aspect of this logic is to turn a growing interest in wine consumption for health benefits into innovative solutions with different approaches and make for this purpose also use of areas that have undergone significant transformations over last decades as a results of global dynamical change which offer new consumption patterns seen now as driving forces for stagnating economies of the XXI century. In an attempt to face this interesting tendency, we conducted a study aiming at determining wine consumption patterns in light of overall alcohol consumption and the dimension of health attitudes with perception and awareness of positive effects of moderate amounts of wine consumption on human health. Results demonstrate a still limited consumption of wine in Poland, also for health-related purposes, although a high consciousness of its benefits and application in medicine indicating an increasing awareness in this matter.
    Keywords: vinoteraphy; wine consumption; health attitudes; cardiovascular system; innovation
    JEL: I12 O13 O30
    Date: 2015–04
  31. By: Romain Houssa; Jolan Mohimont; Christopher Otrok
    Abstract: We examine the role of global and domestic shocks in driving macroeconomic fluctuations for Ghana. We are able to study the impact of exogenous shocks including productivity, credit supply, and commodity price shocks. We identify the shocks with a combination of sign and recursive restrictions within Bayesian VAR models. As a benchmark we provide results for South Africa to document the difference between two economies with similar structures but different levels of development. We find that global shocks play a more dominant role in South Africa than in Ghana. These shocks operate through three channels: trade, credit and commodity prices.
    Keywords: Business cycles;Ghana;South Africa;External shocks;Commodity price shocks;Regional shocks;Low-income developing countries;Cross country analysis;Vector autoregression;Econometric models;Credit Shocks, Developing Countries, Macroeconomic Stabilization Policies, Sign Restrictions, Bayesian VAR.
    Date: 2015–02–25
  32. By: Ogundari, Kolawole; Ito, Shoichi; Okoruwa, Victor
    Abstract: The study estimates calories, proteins and fats-income elasticities in sub Saharan Africa (SSA). Annual time series data for 43 countries covering 1975-2009 that yields a balanced panel was employed for the analysis. The nutrient-income elasticities are estimated based on the aggregate Engel Curve framework using Feasible Generalized Least Square (FGLS) technique that is robust to autocorrelation and non-parametric plot. The empirical results show that a 10% increase in income will lead to about a 0.90%, 0.87%, and 0.73% rise in fats, proteins and calories supply, respectively in the region. This shows that the estimated nutrient-income elasticities are of small size. Other results show that the relationship between calorie and protein-income was found to be non-linear at higher income and diminished, as revealed by the estimated aggregate Engel Curve and non-parametric plot.
    Keywords: Nutrition, health, income elasticity, cross-country, and SSA
    JEL: E0 E00 I1 I10
    Date: 2014–07–16
  33. By: Mariusz Prochniak (Warsaw School of Economics); Bartosz Witkowski (Warsaw School of Economics)
    Abstract: The study examines the concept of stochastic convergence in the EU28 countries over the 1994-2013 period. The convergence of individual countries’ GDP per capita toward the EU28 average per capita income level and the pair-wise convergence between the GDP of individual countries both are analyzed. Additionally, we introduce our own concept of conditional stochastic convergence which is based on adjusted GDP per capita series in order to account for the impact of other growth factors on GDP. The analysis is based on time series techniques. To assess stationarity, ADF tests are used. The study shows that the process of stochastic convergence in the EU countries is not so widespread as the cross-sectional studies on ? or ? convergence indicate. Even if we extend the analysis to examine conditional stochastic convergence, the number of converging economies or pairs of countries rises but not as much as it could be expected from the cross-sectional studies.
    Keywords: economic growth; convergence; catching up; stationarity; ADF test
    JEL: C22 C23 O47 O52
    Date: 2015–04
  34. By: International Monetary Fund
    Abstract: This 2014 Article IV Consultation highlights that Niger’s overall macroeconomic performance has been broadly satisfactory. After the economic slowdown in 2013 owing to the regional security situation and adverse climatic conditions, economic growth has rebounded in 2014. Inflation has been contained, in part owing to the government’s efforts to improve food security and the functioning of food markets. However, program performance has been mixed, as a combination of unexpected security and food expenditures and a shortfall in external financing have strained fiscal management. In the near term, containing the fiscal deficit through measures to improve tax policy and administration, reform customs administration, and reduce exemptions is essential to ensure sustainability.
    Keywords: Article IV consultation reports;Fiscal policy;Natural resources;Budgets;Debt management;Economic indicators;Extended Credit Facility;Letters of Intent;Debt sustainability analysis;Staff Reports;Press releases;Performance criteria modifications;Performance criteria waivers;Niger;
    Date: 2015–03–11
  35. By: Brazil, John
    Abstract: The City of San Jose's Active Transportation Program is in the midst of a ten-year plan to complete a 400-mile on-street bikeway network. With more than 250 miles implemented to date, most of the easier projects have been completed. Increasingly, remaining projects are faced with constrained right-of-way without enough space to accommodate a quality bicycle facility. To create space for new bikeways, San Jose has turned to the use of road diets (removal of a travel lane to create space for other features) and/or removal of on-street parking.  These projects create a number of challenges including design, outreach, environmental clearance, and funding. John Brazil will share lessons learned from several recent projects including Hedding Street, Lincoln Avenue, Park Avenue, and Monterey Road.
    Keywords: Engineering, bikeways, road diet, parking removal
    Date: 2015–04–10
  36. By: Fujii, Tomiki; Shonchoy, Abu S.
    Abstract: We use a panel dataset from Bangladesh to examine the relationship between fertility and the adoption of electricity with the latter instrumented by infrastructure development and the quality of service delivery. We find that the adoption of electricity reduces fertility, and this impact is more pronounced when the household already has two or more children. This observation can be explained by a simple household model of time use, in which adoption of electricity affects only the optimal number of children but not necessarily current fertility behavior if the optimal number has not yet been reached.
    Keywords: Bangladesh, Fertility, Family planning, Electric power, Rural societies, Infrastructure, Time use, Panel data, Ordered probit regression
    JEL: J13 O20
    Date: 2015–03
  37. By: Jonathan Pickering (Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance, University of Canberra); Frank Jotzo (Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University); Peter J. Wood (Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University)
    Abstract: Mobilizing climate finance for developing countries is crucial for achieving a fair and effective global climate regime. To date developed countries retain wide discretion over their national contributions. We explore how different degrees of international coordination may influence the fairness of the global financing effort. We present quantitative scenarios for (i) the metrics used to distribute the collective effort among countries contributing funding; and (ii) the number of contributing countries. We find that an intermediate degree of coordinationÑcombining nationally determined financing pledges with a robust international review mechanismÑmay reduce distortions in relative efforts as well as shortfalls in overall funding, while reflecting reasonable differences over what constitutes a fair share. Broadening the group of contributors may do little to improve adequacy or equity unless the more heterogeneous group can converge on credible measures of responsibility and capacity. The analysis highlights the importance of building common understandings about effort-sharing. Keywords: Climate policy; climate finance; equity; fairness; climate change mitigation; climate change adaptation, development assistance
    JEL: O16 O19 Q54
    Date: 2015–04

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.