nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2017‒02‒19
forty-two papers chosen by

  1. Climate change, agriculture, and adaptation in the Republic of Korea to 2050: An integrated assessment: By Cenacchi, Nicola; Lim, Youngah; Sulser, Timothy B.; Islam, Shahnila; Mason-D’Croz, Daniel; Robertson, Richard D.; Kim, Chang-Gil; Wiebe, Keith D.
  2. On consumption patterns in oyster markets: the role of attitudes By Santeramo, Fabio Gaetano; Carlucci, Domenico; De Devitiis, Biagia; Nardone, Gianluca; Viscecchia, Rosaria
  3. Agricultural Risk Management and Land Tenure By Schwerhoff, Gregor; Kalkuhl, Matthias; Waha, Katharina
  4. Farm size and effects of chemical fertilizer price on farm households: Insights from Nepal Terai: By Takeshima, Hiroyuki; Shivakoti, Sabnam; Bhattarai, Binod; Karkee, Madhab; Pokhrel, Suroj; Kumar, Anjani
  5. Liquid milk: Cash constraints and day-to-day intertemporal choice in financial diaries: By Geng, Xin; Janssens, Wendy; Kramer, Berber N.
  6. Price hike of staple food, nutritional impact and consumption adjustment: Evidence from the 2005-2010 rice price increase in rural Bangladesh By Syed Abul Hasan
  7. Harnessing net primary productivity data for monitoring sustainable development of agriculture: By Robinson, Nathaniel P.; Cox, Cindy M.; Koo, Jawoo
  8. The Impact of NuVal Shelf Nutrition Labels on Consumption: Evidence from Cold Cereal Purchases By Melo, Grace; Zhen, Chen
  9. Multinomial Logistic Analysis of the Most Frequent Market Venues for Locally Grown Fresh Produce among Online Shoppers By Gumirakiza, Jean Dominique; VanZee, Sarah; King, Stephen
  10. The effect of land inheritance on youth employment and migration decisions: Evidence from rural Ethiopia: By Kosec, Katrina; Ghebru, Hosaena; Holtemeyer, Brian; Mueller, Valerie; Schmidt, Emily
  11. The impact of Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Programme on the nutritional status of children: 2008–2012: By Berhane, Guush; Hoddinott, John F.; Kumar, Neha
  12. Youth employment, agricultural transformation, and rural labor dynamics in Nigeria: By Adesugba, Margaret Abiodun; Mavrotas, George
  13. Managing multi-purpose water infrastructure: A review of international experience By Meleesa Naughton; Nicole DeSantis; Alexandre Martoussevitch
  14. What drives input subsidy policy reform? The case of Zambia, 2002–2016: By Resnick, Danielle; Mason, Nicole M.
  15. A Spatial Econometric Analysis of Land Use Efficiency in Large and Small Municipalities By Guastella, Gianni; Pareglio, Stefano; Sckokai, Paolo
  16. Farmers’ perception on climate change-driven rice production loss in drought-prone and groundwater-depleted areas of Bangladesh: An ordered probit analysis By Zeenatul Islam; Mohammad Alauddin; Md. Abdur Rashid Sarker
  17. Impact of Mobile Phones on Staple Food Markets in Mozambique: Improved Arbitrage or Increased Rent Extraction? By Wouter Zant
  18. Agricultural extension messages using video on portable devices: Increase knowledge about seed selection and seed storage and handling among smallholder potato farmers in southwestern Uganda By Van Campenhout, Bjorn; Vandevelde, Senne; Walukano, Wilberforce; Van Asten, Piet
  19. Analysis of the land use sector in INDCs of relevant Non-Annex I parties By Hargita, Yvonne; Rüter, Sebastian
  20. Effects of agricultural mechanization on smallholders and their self-selection into farming: An insight from the Nepal Terai: By Takeshima, Hiroyuki; Shrestha, Rudra Bahadur; Kaphle, Basu Dev; Karkee, Madhab; Pokhrel, Suroj; Kumar, Anjani
  22. Nepal’s 2072 federal constitution: Implications for the governance of the agricultural sector: By Kyle, Jordan; Resnick, Danielle
  23. Energy use and rural poverty: Empirical evidence from potato farmers in north China: By Li, Zihan; Gong, Yazhen; Chen, Kevin Z.
  24. Bilateral Trade Agreements and Trade Distortions in Agricultural Markets By Cornelius Hirsch; Harald Oberhofer
  25. A comprehensive evaluation of the EU's biofuel policy: From biofuels to agrofuels By Murnaghan, Kitty
  26. Does a “Blue Revolution†help the poor? Evidence from Bangladesh: By Rashid, Shahidur; Minot, Nicholas; Lemma, Solomon
  27. Farmer’s perception of climate change and responsive strategies in three selected provinces of South Africa By Elum, Zelda; Modise, David; Marr, Ana
  28. Biofuels Markets and Policies in Ukraine By Janda, Karel; Stankus, Elena
  29. Economy wide effects of a possible erosion of AGOA preferential access for South Africa By Nyhodo, Bonani; Ntshangase, Thandeka; Ngqangweni, Simphiwe
  30. The paradox of land reform, inequality and development in Colombia By Jean-Paul Faguet; Fabio Sánchez; Marta-Juanita Villaveces
  31. Mean-Reversion in Unprocessed Food Prices By Kurmas Akdogan
  32. Facilitating food trade within ECOWAS By Onasis Tharcisse Adétumi GUEDEGBE
  33. What drives diversification of national food supplies? A cross-country analysis: By Choudhury, Samira; Headey, Derek D.
  34. Do sovereign wealth funds dampen the negative effects of commodity price volatility? By Kamiar Mohaddes; Mehdi Raissi
  35. Do development projects crowd out private-sector activities? A survival analysis of contract farming participation in northern Ghana: By Lambrecht, Isabel; Ragasa, Catherine
  36. Elicitation of Subjective Beliefs: A Pilot study of farmers' nitrogen management decision-making in Central Iowa By Agarwal, Sandip; Jacobs, Keri L.; Weninger, Quinn
  37. Agriculture and Food Global Value Chains in Sub-Saharan Africa: Does bilateral trade policy impact on backward and forward participation? By Jean Balié; Davide Del Prete; Emiliano Magrini; Pierluigi Montalbano; Silvia Nenci
  38. Cities and rural transformation: A spatial analysis of rural youth livelihoods in Ghana: By Diao, Xinshen; Fang, Peixun; Magalhaes, Eduardo; Pahl, Stefan; Silver, Jed
  39. Complex climate effects on cooperation and disputes in transboundary river basins By Arvid Bring; Eric Sjöberg
  40. Can better targeting improve the effectiveness of Ghana's Fertilizer Subsidy Program?: Lessons from Ghana and other countries in Africa south of the Sahara By Houssou, Nazaire; Andam, Kwaw S.; Collins, Asante-Addo
  41. Is Wine a Safe-Haven? Evidence from a Nonparametric Causality-in-Quantiles Test By Nikolaos Antonakakis; Mehmet Balcilar; Elie Bouri; Rangan Gupta
  42. The status of energy access in three regions of Tanzania: Baseline report for an urban grid upgrading and rural extension project By Bensch, Gunther; Kreibaum, Merle; Mbegalo, Tukae; Peters, Jörg; Wagner, Natascha

  1. By: Cenacchi, Nicola; Lim, Youngah; Sulser, Timothy B.; Islam, Shahnila; Mason-D’Croz, Daniel; Robertson, Richard D.; Kim, Chang-Gil; Wiebe, Keith D.
    Abstract: As the effects of climate change set in, and population and income growth exert increasing pressure on natural resources, food security is becoming a pressing challenge for countries worldwide. Awareness of these threats is critical to transforming concern into long-term planning, and modeling tools like the one used in the present study are beneficial for strategic support of decision making in the agricultural policy arena. The focus of this investigation is the Republic of Korea, where economic growth has resulted in large shifts in diet in recent decades, in parallel with a decline in both arable land and agricultural production, and a tripling of agricultural imports, compared to the early 2000s. Although these are recognized as traits of a rapidly growing economy, officials and experts in the country recognize that the trends expose the Republic of Korea to climate change shocks and fluctuations in the global food market. This study uses the IMPACT (International Model for Policy Analysis of Agricultural Commodities and Trade) economic model to investigate possible future trends of both domestic food production and dependence on food imports, as well as the effects from adoption of agricultural practices consistent with a climate change adaptation strategy. The goal is to help assess the prospects for sustaining improvements in food security and possibly inform the national debate on agricultural policy. Results show that historical trends of harvested area and imports may continue into the future under climate change. Although crop models suggest negative long-term impacts of climate change on rice yield in the Republic of Korea, the economic model simulations show that intrinsic productivity growth and market effects have the potential to limit the magnitude of losses; rice production and yield are projected to keep growing between 2010 and 2050, with a larger boost when adoption of improved technologies is taken into consideration. At the same time, food production and net exports from the country’s major trading partners are also projected to increase, although diminished by climate change effects. In sum, these results show that kilocalorie availability will keep growing in the Republic of Korea, and although climate change may have some impact by reducing the overall availability, the effect does not appear strong enough to have significant consequences on projected trends of increasing food security.
    Keywords: resource management, economic development, prices, nutrition, malnutrition, commodities, trade, food supply, food security, climate change, technological changes, commodity markets, international trade,
    Date: 2016
  2. By: Santeramo, Fabio Gaetano; Carlucci, Domenico; De Devitiis, Biagia; Nardone, Gianluca; Viscecchia, Rosaria
    Abstract: Achieving a low-carbon and sustainable economy is a long-term goal that EU aims at achieving in the next few decades: the potential role of bioeconomy is likely to make the difference, and in particular, the EU aquaculture and the seafood processing industry has the potential to contribute substantially to the emergence of bioeconomies (for instance through new – niche - markets for bio-based products such as algae, etc). In this particular framework, understanding how to enhance cleaner and more sustainable consumption patterns is preliminary to the transition towards more equitable and sustainable markets. The present analysis investigates the role of consumers’ attitudes with respect to sustainable attributes (namely food safety and respect of the environment) in order to suggest on their potential role to catalyze the transition toward bioeconomies. Up to date, empirical investigations on this issue are limited to few markets, and studies on aquaculture are particularly scant. The gap is reduced by the present analysis: it has been implemented a survey on fish consumers to investigate how their attitudes toward food safety and environmental issues tend to influence consumption choices, and it is shown that those attitudes are important determinants of consumers choices. Put differently, a cleaner and more sustainable supply chain (i.e through a safer, and environmental friendly product) is likely to enhance consumption of oysters. To the extent that policy makers, producers, and taxpayers are interested in enhancing sustainable bioeconomies, understanding the relevance of attitudes toward food safety and environmental sustainability is an important and pressing goal. The analysis, novel in its application to a high quality product, speaks in this direction and will help understanding how to accelerate the transition to sustainable bioeconomies.
    Keywords: Attitudes, Consumption, Food safety, Environment, Seafood, Sustainability
    JEL: Q11 Q18 Q22 Q28
    Date: 2017–02
  3. By: Schwerhoff, Gregor; Kalkuhl, Matthias; Waha, Katharina
    Abstract: Farmers under a sharecropping contract have been shown to exert less effort than farmers renting land due to lower incentives. They do not only choose their effort level, however, but also make investment decisions between projects of different risk-return profiles. We develop a small theoretical model that integrates the effort effect of sharecropping as well as the risk-reducing aspect of sharecropping which allows analyzing the implications for production, risk-management and risk-coping. In the empirical analysis, we combine a household survey taken in eleven African countries with data on climate risk to test the theoretical predictions. We find that sharecropping is endogenous to climate: it is more frequent in regions with low rainfall and higher weather variability. In a second step we test whether sharecropping can function as a substitute to other risk adaptation strategies. We find that sharecropping farmers are less likely to own livestock and more likely to use fertilizer. In economies where formal kinds of insurance are unavailable, sharecropping thus functions as a form of insurance and reduces the need for potentially harmful risk management strategies.
    JEL: O13 Q12 Q15
    Date: 2016
  4. By: Takeshima, Hiroyuki; Shivakoti, Sabnam; Bhattarai, Binod; Karkee, Madhab; Pokhrel, Suroj; Kumar, Anjani
    Abstract: This research explores how inputs such as chemical fertilizer that are often complementary to labor can benefit smallholders in countries like Nepal. These and other inputs complement labor when a country experiences periods of increased labor scarcity due to rising wages in rural areas. The future of smallholders in Asian countries is vigorously debated in the policy and research arena. An increasing number of studies indicate that in the face of rising rural farm wages, growing mechanization is gradually shifting the advantages enjoyed by smallholders to slightly larger farms in many Asian countries, including Nepal. While the evidence is limited, earlier studies suggest that this trend may also be associated with a greater return to the use of chemical fertilizers by larger farms than by their smaller counterparts. In this paper, we further assess the relationship between the role of chemical fertilizer and farm size in lowland Nepal. In particular, we assess the different effects of chemical fertilizer price on large versus small farm households, depending on farm size. We use the 2003 and 2010 panel data from the Nepal Living Standard Survey. Results generally suggest that in Nepal Terai, lower chemical fertilizer price seems to increase the per capita incomes of farm households with larger landholdings more than it does those with smaller landholdings. The mechanism is somewhat complicated; typically, larger farms benefit through an increased supply of crops from sharecropped/rented farms, which leads to a potential increase in forage supply and increased revenues from livestock production. However, greater benefits for larger farms through this mechanism remains consistent with the greater return to chemical fertilizer among larger farms. This is contrary to the notion that chemical fertilizer is a land-saving input that benefits smaller farms relatively more than it does larger farms. We conclude that fertilizer policy in Nepal should be designed within the broader framework of longer-term agricultural-sector strategies that will impact the future of smallholder farmers.
    Keywords: fertilizers, inorganic fertilizers, farm inputs, farm size, farm structure, smallholders, households,
    Date: 2016
  5. By: Geng, Xin; Janssens, Wendy; Kramer, Berber N.
    Abstract: This paper analyzes implications of cash constraints for collective marketing, using the case of the Kenyan dairy sector. Collective marketing, for instance through cooperatives, can improve smallholder farmer income but relies on informal, nonenforceable agreements to sell outputs collectively. Side selling of output in the local market occurs frequently and is typically attributed to price differences between the market and cooperative. This paper provides an alternative explanation, namely that farmers sell in the local market when they are cash constrained because cooperatives defer payments while buyers in local markets pay cash immediately. Building on semiparametric estimation techniques for panel data, we find robust evidence of this theory. High-frequency, high-detail panel data show that farmers sell more in the local market, in particular to buyers who pay cash immediately, in weeks when they have low cash on hand. Moreover, households cope with health shocks by selling more milk in the local market and less to the cooperative, but only in weeks when they are not covered by health insurance. Increased flexibility in payment and the provision of insurance through agricultural cooperatives can potentially reduce side selling and improve the performance of collective marketing arrangements.
    Keywords: finance, dairy industry, dairy cooperatives, agricultural cooperatives, smallholders, marketing, households, economic development,
    Date: 2017
  6. By: Syed Abul Hasan
    Abstract: This paper studies the nutritional impact and the adjustment in consumption as a result of the 2005-2010 rice price increase in rural Bangladesh. We compare the net rice buyers, who suffer from a negative income effect, with the self sufficient households. Our findings indicate that rural households in Bangladesh cope well with the surge in the domestic rice price as indicated by the absence of any effect on their calorie intake and food diversity. Income plays a crucial role in dietary diversity indicating the importance of effective income support programmes at the time of food price shocks.
    Keywords: Rice Price Increase; Difference-in-difference Estimation; Nutrition; Bangladesh
    JEL: D12 I32 O13 O53 Q12
    Date: 2017–02
  7. By: Robinson, Nathaniel P.; Cox, Cindy M.; Koo, Jawoo
    Abstract: This study was undertaken to assess the utility of remotely sensed net primary productivity (NPP) data to measure agricultural sustainability by applying a new methodology that captures spatial variability and trends in total NPP and in NPP removed at harvest. The sustainable intensification of agriculture is widely promoted as a means for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and transitioning toward a more productive, sustainable, and inclusive agriculture, particularity in fragile environments. Yet critics claim that the 17 SDGs and 169 targets are immeasurable and unmanageable. We propose adoption of satellite-estimated, time-series NPP data to monitor agricultural intensification and sustainability, as it is one indicator potentially valuable across several SDGs. To illustrate, we present a unique monitoring framework and a novel indicator, the agricultural appropriation of net primary productivity (AANPP) and analyze spatial trends in NPP and AANPP across the continent of Africa. AANPP focuses on the proportion of total crop NPP removed at harvest. We estimate AANPP by overlaying remotely sensed satellite imagery with rasterized crop production data at 10-by-10-kilometer spatial resolution; we explore variation in NPP and AANPP in terms of food and ecological security. The spatial distribution of NPP and AANPP illustrates the dominance of cropping systems as spatial drivers of NPP across many regions in West and East Africa, as well as in the fertile river valleys across North Africa and the Sahel, where access to irrigation and other technological inputs are inflating AANPP relative to NPP. A comparison of 2000 and 2005 datasets showed increasing AANPP in African countries south of the Sahara—particularly in Mozambique, Angola, and Zambia—whereas NPP either held stable or decreased considerably. This pattern was especially evident subnationally in Ethiopia. Such trends highlight increasing vulnerability of populations to food and ecological insecurity. When combined with other indicators and time-series data, the significance of NPP and the capacity of spatially explicit datasets have far-reaching implications for monitoring the progress of sustainable development in a post-2015 world.
    Keywords: productivity, intensification, sustainable agriculture,
    Date: 2016
  8. By: Melo, Grace; Zhen, Chen
    Abstract: Research examining the effect of summary shelf nutrition labels on consumers’ behavior in real market settings is scarce. Using a supermarket’s voluntary adoption of NuVal―a 1 to 100 numeric summary shelf label system―as a natural experiment, we estimate a Two-Part Model (TPM) to identify the effect of the NuVal label on consumer purchasing decisions for cold cereal. Our results show that posting the NuVal score not only increases the purchase volume of healthier cold cereal products but also increases households’ likelihood to purchase cold cereal products with higher nutrition scores. Tests for heterogeneous treatment effects reveal that lower-income households experience a large improvement in their food choices when the NuVal scores are posted.
    Keywords: Shelf Nutrition Labels, NuVal, Two-Part Model, Agricultural and Food Policy, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Marketing, Q18, D12,
    Date: 2017–02
  9. By: Gumirakiza, Jean Dominique; VanZee, Sarah; King, Stephen
    Abstract: Online market is fast expending as more consumers are increasingly shopping online and businesses solidifying their presence online. This paper examines the most preferred (primary or most frequent) market venues that online shoppers use when purchasing locally/regionally grown fresh produce. The target population consists of consumers who made at least two any online purchases within six months prior to participating in this study; hereby referred to as “online shoppers”. The sample consists of 1,205 randomly selected online shoppers residing within the South region of the U.S. Data collection was done using Qualtrics actively managed market research panels and social media such as Facebook, and Twitter. Results indicate that grocery stores are the most preferred market venue online shoppers use to purchase locally/regionally grown fresh produce. The relative probability associated with this situation is 44 percent. Farmers’ markets are the second most frequent market venues with a relative likelihood of 33 percent. The third market venue is on-farm (road stands, you-pick-your own, and agritourism) and the CSA program with relative probability of 7 percent. Online market is currently the fourth most frequent with a relative likelihood of 5 percent. 11 percent of the online shoppers have no particular market venue they consider as primary. This analysis is significant to fresh produce growers and marketers within local food movement because it provides analysis of the most preferred market venues among the increasingly common type of consumers. Results suggest new marketing strategies to conveniently make fresh produce accessible among online shoppers. Furthermore, this study sets a basis for future analyses that will be interested in trucking changes in the preferred market venues for local/regional fresh produce among online shoppers.
    Keywords: Online shoppers, local/regional fresh produce, Agribusiness, Marketing,
    Date: 2017
  10. By: Kosec, Katrina; Ghebru, Hosaena; Holtemeyer, Brian; Mueller, Valerie; Schmidt, Emily
    Abstract: How does the amount of land youth expect to inherit affect their migration and employment decisions? This paper explores this question in the context of rural Ethiopia using panel data from 2010 and 2014. We estimate a household fixed-effects model and exploit exogenous variation in the timing of land redistributions to overcome endogenous household decisions about how much land to bequeath to descendants. We find that larger expected land inheritances significantly lower the likelihood of long-distance permanent migration and of permanent migration to urban areas during this time. Inheriting more land is also associated with a significantly higher likelihood of employment in agriculture and a lower likelihood of employment in the nonagricultural sector. Conversely, the decision to attend school is unaffected. These results appear to be most heavily driven by males and by the older half of our youth sample. We also find several mediating factors matter. Land inheritance plays a much more pronounced role in predicting rural-to-urban permanent migration and nonagricultural-sector employment in areas with less vibrant land markets and in relatively remote areas (those far from major urban centers). Overall, the results suggest that inheritance strongly influences the spatial location and strategic employment decisions of youth.
    Keywords: agriculture, employment, youth, migration,
    Date: 2016
  11. By: Berhane, Guush; Hoddinott, John F.; Kumar, Neha
    Abstract: Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP) is a large-scale social protection intervention aimed at improving food security and stabilizing asset levels. The PSNP contains a mix of public works employment and unconditional transfers. It is a well-targeted program; however, several years passed before payment levels reached the intended amounts. The PSNP has been successful in improving household food security. However, children’s nutritional status in the localities where the PSNP operates is poor, with 48 percent of children stunted in 2012. This leads to the question of whether the PSNP could improve child nutrition. In this paper, we examine the impact of the PSNP on children’s nutritional status over the period 2008–2012. Doing so requires paying particular attention to the targeting of the PSNP and how payment levels have evolved over time. Using inverse-probability-weighted regression-adjustment estimators, we find no evidence that the PSNP reduces either chronic undernutrition (height-for-age z-scores, stunting) or acute undernutrition (weight-for-height z-scores, wasting). While we cannot definitively identify the reason for this nonresult, we note that child diet quality is poor. We find no evidence that the PSNP improves child consumption of pulses, oils, fruits, vegetables, dairy products, or animal-source proteins. Most mothers have not had contact with health extension workers nor have they received information on good feeding practices. Water practices, as captured by the likelihood that mothers boil drinking water, are poor. These findings, along with work by other researchers, have informed revisions to the PSNP. Future research will assess whether these revisions have led to improvements in the diets and anthropometric status of preschool children in Ethiopia.
    Keywords: ETHIOPIA; EAST AFRICA; AFRICA SOUTH OF SAHARA; AFRICA, nutrition; children; child development; food security; households; child feeding; nutritional status; health; human nutrition; diet; preschool children; mothers; socioeconomic development, stunting; social protection; Productive Safety Net Programme,
    Date: 2017
  12. By: Adesugba, Margaret Abiodun; Mavrotas, George
    Abstract: Youth employment in developing countries, particularly in connection with agricultural transformation policies in Africa south of the Sahara, has attracted a great deal of attention in recent years. The debate on youth unemployment globally—and specifically in Africa—hinges also on the differential pattern of structural change of economies, which works against the creation of “good†jobs. Although the proportion of unemployed youth in Nigeria has decreased in recent years, the percentage remains high. One recent government effort, the rather ambitious Agricultural Transformation Agenda, was geared (among other things) to promoting employment opportunities for youth in the agricultural sector. The youth employment issue is an important part of the current agricultural policy agenda of the new Federal Government of Nigeria. Against this background, the paper presents a comprehensive national and sectoral growth analysis of youth labor and employment trends in Nigeria, with a particular focus on agriculture and the rural nonfarm economy. It provides insights into the drivers of youth unemployment and underemployment, and discusses the prospects for job creation for youth in the agricultural and the rural non-farm sectors. The paper concludes with a discussion of prospects and policies for enhancing youth employment in the Nigerian agricultural sector, of particular interest to policymakers in Nigeria but also to those interested in youth unemployment in the developing world.
    Keywords: employment, off farm employment, youth, agricultural policies,
    Date: 2016
  13. By: Meleesa Naughton; Nicole DeSantis; Alexandre Martoussevitch (OECD)
    Abstract: In this paper, the term multi-purpose water infrastructure (MPWI) encompasses all man-made water systems, including dams, dykes, reservoirs and associated irrigation canals and water supply networks, which may be used for more than one purpose (for economic, social and environmental activities). While MPWI plays a significant role in the socio-economic development and ensuring water, food and energy security of many countries (not least in water-stressed Central Asia), many MPWI projects face various challenges. These including unsustainability of business models for financing, operation and maintenance, lower-than-expected performance or the emergence of unforeseen risks and negative externalities. This paper explores the complexity in designing, financing, regulating and managing MPWI projects, with the objective to inform policy and decision-making. It attempts to identify key issues related to managing MPWI, lessons learned from international experience and possible solutions to the challenges. It examines several principles, approaches and instruments to enhance the sustainability of MPWI, drawing on international experience. Finally, the paper identifies knowledge and experience gaps, needs for further research and possible areas of future work.
    Keywords: externalities, multi-purpose water infrastructure, nexus, water management
    JEL: D62 Q15 Q18 Q25
    Date: 2017–02–18
  14. By: Resnick, Danielle; Mason, Nicole M.
    Abstract: When and why do suboptimal agricultural policies persist despite technical evidence highlighting alternatives? And what explains episodes of reform after prolonged periods of policy inertia? This paper addresses these questions by applying the Kaleidoscope Model for agricultural and food security policy change to the specific case of agricultural input policy in Zambia. Since 2002, the Farmer Input Support Program (formerly the Fertilizer Support Program) has been a cornerstone of Zambia’s agricultural policy. Over the years, however, many researchers have highlighted weaknesses in the program and proposed other options. Based on semistructured interviews with key stakeholders and intensive process tracing using media, donor, parliamentary, and research reports, this paper examines how the program initially began in 2002 and during subsequent periods of reform in 2009 and 2015. Based on the findings here, periods of reform for input support programs are most likely when there is a confluence of multiple factors. These include the emergence of a window of opportunity in the form of either a focusing event (for example, a food crisis) or an institutional shift (for example, a new president or new ruling party) that coincides with broad stakeholder support for empirically grounded alternatives, available material resources, and sustained commitment from politically important policy makers.
    Keywords: agricultural policies, subsidies,
    Date: 2016
  15. By: Guastella, Gianni; Pareglio, Stefano; Sckokai, Paolo
    Abstract: We estimate the relationship between urban spatial expansion and its socio-economic determinants in Lombardy, the most urbanised region of Italy (and one of the most urbanized of the European Union), at the municipality level. Test results suggest that this relationship varies significantly among municipalities of different size and findings support the hypothesis that larger ones are more efficient in managing land take. In particular, we find that the marginal land consumption per new household is inversely related to the size of the municipality and we link this evidence to the fact that, since more space is often available, small municipalities pay less institutional attention to the issue of land take and consequently internalise less the environmental externalities. This evidence calls for a reflection on the role of planning policies and the effectiveness of undifferentiated measures to contain land take, especially in the case of Italy, where the municipalities, more than 99% of which have less than 50,000 inhabitants, decide on land use transformations.
    Keywords: Land Take, City Size, Threshold Regression, Spatial Econometrics, Community/Rural/Urban Development, O18, Q15, R14,
    Date: 2017–02–08
  16. By: Zeenatul Islam (Department of Economics, University of Rajshahi, Rajshahi); Mohammad Alauddin (School of Economics, The University of Queensland); Md. Abdur Rashid Sarker (Department of Economics, University of Rajshahi, Rajshahi)
    Abstract: The existing literature pays inadequate attention to any rigorous analysis of perceived severity of climate-driven crop losses, their determinants and implications. The present study fills this gap in three ways. It investigates farmers’ perception about the severity of loss for three rice crops, identifies their determinants and explores policy implications. In doing so, it employs an ordered probit model to data from 1,800 farm households from districts typifying drought- prone and groundwater depleted areas of Bangladesh. Perceived severity of rice production losses was not uniform for all rice crops being higher for the rain-fed crops and appeared broadly consistent with available evidence. Severity of perceived crop loss was associated with geophysical factors, household characteristics, institutional and market accessibility, and household adaptation strategy. Household resource endowment had no perceptible effect on production loss. The impact of these factors was specific to the crop and severity of perceived loss. This study has several policy implications involving market, R & D and institutional support based options. Strengthening support systems for institutional and market accessibility, and science driven adaptation strategy including generation and wider dissemination of drought tolerant rice varieties, and enhancing farmers’ capacity to change rice varieties on a regular basis constitute focal areas.
    Keywords: Loss severity; Ground water depletion; Drought severity; Ordered probit; Accessibility; Adaptation strategy
    JEL: O13 Q54 C35
    Date: 2017–01–09
  17. By: Wouter Zant (VU University, The Netherlands)
    Abstract: I use the quasi experimental nature of the roll-out of the mobile phone network in Mozambique to estimate the impact of search costs on the dispersion of maize prices and transport costs. The introduction of mobile phone services from 1997 to 2009 explains a 4.5-11% percent reduction in price dispersion of maize prices, and a slightly larger reduction in per ton km transport costs. Apart from an improvement of the efficiency of maize markets, the evidence suggests that traders benefit by capturing increased rent income. Various sources of potential heterogeneity are identified: the reduction is larger for pairs connecting remote locations, for source markets with a low poverty head count and with a higher mobile phone coverage in neighbouring markets, and during drought periods.
    Keywords: search costs; transport costs; mobile phones; agricultural markets; maize prices; sub-Saharan Africa; Mozambique
    JEL: O13 O33 Q11 Q13
    Date: 2017–02–10
  18. By: Van Campenhout, Bjorn; Vandevelde, Senne; Walukano, Wilberforce; Van Asten, Piet
    Abstract: To feed a growing population, agricultural productivity needs to increase dramatically. Agricultural extension information, with its public, non-rival nature, is generally undersupplied, and public provision remains challenging. In this research, we explore the effectiveness of alternative modes of agricultural extension information delivery. We test whether simple agricultural extension video messages delivered through Android tablets increase knowledge of recommended practices in seed selection, storage, and handling among a sample of potato farmers in southwestern Uganda. Using a field experiment with ex ante matching in a factorial design, we find that showing agricultural extension videos significantly affects farmers’ knowledge. However, our results suggest impact pathways that go beyond simply replicating what was shown in the video. Video messages may also trigger a process of abstraction, whereby farmers apply insights gained in one context to a different context. Alternatively, video messages may activate knowledge farmers already posses but, for some reason, do not use.
    Keywords: extension activities, potatoes, information and communication technologies (icts), seeds, seed storage, cultivar selection,
    Date: 2016
  19. By: Hargita, Yvonne; Rüter, Sebastian
    Abstract: The international community has committed itself to adopt a global climate agreement in Paris in 2015, which shall enter into force in 2020 and shall be legally-binding for all. In advance of the negotiations, parties shall submit the so-called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC), providing the voluntary national emission reduction pledges post 2020. For the purposes of § 14 of the Lima Call for Climate Action parties may also provide information on whether and in what manner removals are taken into account. Removals are synonymous for the land use (LU) sector that can serve as a carbon sink or source, depending on the national preconditions and the sector's management. Climate negotiations in the past have shown that the accounting rules that result from the special role of the LU sector have a major impact on the accounting of emissions and removals (in the sum: net-removals), and thus on the pledged overall emission reduction targets. Since the international community has yet not been able to agree on binding accounting rules for post-2020, every party can decide on its own, how it considers net-emissions from LU in its INDC. Countries with large forest areas could significantly weaken their overall level of ambition by applying national profitable rules. With our analysis of the LU sector in relevant Non-Annex I-INDCs, we critically reflect the potential role of forests and the REDD+ mechanism for the national reduction targets. The analysis shows that the assessed parties have taken advantage of the missing common rules and designed their reduction targets in a variety of ways. This variety risks transparency, completeness and comparability of information and complicates the assessment of ambition. The remaining issues that could not be answered with the data provided confirmed the need for independent technical review of emission data and assumptions behind future emission development by UNFCCC experts. These reviews could assure that the quality of pursuing negotiations of reduction targets would not be compromised. At the present state, the inclusion of the LU sector and its impact on future reduction commitments remain a source of uncertainty.
    Keywords: Paris Agreement,forest,land use,Brazil,India,Indonesia,UNFCCC,INDC,Non-Annex I,REDD+,2020,2030,Pariser Klimaabkommen,Wald,Landnutzung,Brasilien,Indien,China,Indonesien
    Date: 2016
  20. By: Takeshima, Hiroyuki; Shrestha, Rudra Bahadur; Kaphle, Basu Dev; Karkee, Madhab; Pokhrel, Suroj; Kumar, Anjani
    Abstract: This research was undertaken to better assess the role of mechanization in the future of smallholder farmers in Nepal. It addresses the knowledge gap about whether promoting mechanization that is often complementary to land can effectively support smallholders, particularly in the face of a growing nonfarm sector. Rising rural wages in Nepal have increasingly put pressures on smallholder farmers, who tend to operate labor-intensive farming. Agricultural mechanization through custom hiring of tractor services has recently been considered as an option to mitigate the impact of rising labor costs for smallholders. However, the benefit of agricultural mechanization may still be better captured by exploiting the economies of scale of medium to large farmers rather than smallholders. In the meantime, the Nepal agricultural sector still employs a disproportionate share of workers given its share in the economy, potentially depressing agricultural labor productivity. It is therefore an important policy question whether to (1) continue supporting smallholders through custom-hired tractor services or (2) encourage smallholders to rent their farms out to medium-size or larger farmers, while helping smallholders specialize in the nonfarm sector, where their labor productivity may be higher. Using samples from the Terai zone—one of the agroecological belts in Nepal, largely consisting of lowland plains— from the Nepal Living Standards Survey, we assess whether the benefits of hiring in tractor services are greater among medium to large farmers than among smallholders, and how these benefits may depend on smallholders’ decision to remain in or leave farming. This study also contributes to the impact evaluation literature by showing that jointly assessing the effects of two treatments (whether to adopt custom-hired tractor services and continue farming, or to search for better options and specialize in off-farm activities) can lead to different implications than assessing them separately. Our analyses suggest that the government should continue to promote custom-hired tractor services not only for medium to large farmers but also for smallholders. If, over time, barriers to specializing in nonfarm activities are lowered and more smallholders start leaving farming, mechanization may no longer benefit the remaining smallholders. Support for mechanization can then be focused more on medium to large farmers, while types of support other than mechanization can be devised for the remaining smallholders.
    Keywords: mechanization, smallholders, large farms, surveys, transitional farming, farming systems,
    Date: 2016
  21. By: Wagner, Ulrich J.; De Preux, Laure
    Abstract: Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are known to cause global climate change but no damage to the local environment. However, because CO2 is often jointly produced with other substances that pollute the environment, CO2 abatement may generate ancillary benefits, especially for human health. Previous research suggests that these co-benefits can offset a substantial share of the economic costs of mitigation policies. This paper conducts the first empirical test of this hypothesis in the context of the European Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) for CO2. The econometric analysis exploits comprehensive microdata on discharges of more than 90 different pollutants into air, water and soil, at more than 28,000 commercial installations in 31 European countries. It is found that the EU ETS decreased air releases of some pollutants while increasing water releases of other pollutants. Moreover, in some cases the patterns of spatial redistribution are strongly correlated with income, population size or age. The implications for the efficiency and environmental justice of the EU ETS are discussed.
    JEL: H23 Q54 Q58
    Date: 2016
  22. By: Kyle, Jordan; Resnick, Danielle
    Abstract: In this paper we explore the implications of Nepal’s new federal Constitution—passed in September 2015—for governance of the agricultural sector. Agriculture is the backbone of the Nepali economy, providing a livelihood for approximately two-thirds of the population, contributing one-third of the country’s GDP, and constituting more than half of the country’s exports. In transitioning from a unitary to a federal republic—with greater authority and autonomy granted to subnational units of government—it is of paramount importance to ensure that the agricultural sector is guided by coordinated planning, retains sufficient human capacity, and receives adequate fiscal resources. These considerations are particularly important given that the governance of Nepal’s agricultural sector already suffers from poor coordination, low human resources capacity, and inadequate financial resources. Addressing these issues may become more difficult under a federal structure. This paper begins by laying out the main challenges for agricultural governance in Nepal under the current structure. To do so, it relies on an original survey of 100 district agricultural and livestock officers in charge of local agricultural service delivery in Nepal as well as perspectives collected through more than two dozen semi-structured interviews with officials from the Ministry of Agricultural Development, the Ministry of Livestock Development, civil society, the private sector, and donors. Because Nepal is embarking on a pathway to more decentralized governance, which has been well-trodden by a number of other countries, the paper proceeds by examining five case studies, drawing lessons from India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, and South Africa. Based on these analyses, the paper offers policy recommendations on how the sector can be restructured to meet the constitutional provisions, while simultaneously ensuring that the government can deliver on its long-term objectives to develop the agricultural sector.
    Keywords: governance, agriculture, agricultural policies, decentralization, federalism,
    Date: 2016
  23. By: Li, Zihan; Gong, Yazhen; Chen, Kevin Z.
    Abstract: Rising energy expenditures due to more intensive use of energy in modern agriculture and increasing energy prices may affect rural households’ agricultural incomes, particularly the incomes of the rural poor in developing countries. However, the exact link between energy costs and income among the rural poor needs further empirical investigation. This paper aims to gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between energy use and family income, using household-level panel data collected from 500 potato farmers in a poor region of Northern China, where eliminating poverty by 2020 is now the top government priority. The findings indicate that potato plays an important role in the surveyed families’ incomes, and the energy costs of potato production have a significant negative relationship with family income. However, the significance of the negative relationship is robust only for farmers with low economic standing, such as those living below the poverty line or just above it. Energy costs also have a significant negative relationship with the family incomes of those cultivating a certain size of potato-sown area, but this relationship becomes insignificant when farmers have too small of a potato-sown area. These findings indicate that in general, reducing energy costs helps the poor increase their income but is not necessarily helpful to those with high economic standing or a relatively small potato-sown area. If rural development policies are to support poverty reduction and energy savings (at least in major potato production regions), interventions aimed at energy cost reduction may be effective only for the poor whose family income depends, to a relatively high degree, on potato production.
    Keywords: energy, potatoes, poverty, smallholders, intensification, income, households,
    Date: 2016
  24. By: Cornelius Hirsch; Harald Oberhofer
    Abstract: Agricultural support levels are at a crossroad with reduced distortions in OECD countries and increasing support for agricultural producers in emerging economies over the last decades. This paper studies the determinants of distortions in the agricultural markets by putting a specific focus on the role of trade policy. Applying various different dynamic panel data estimators and explicitly accounting for potential endogeneity of trade policy agreements, we find that an increase in the number of bilateral free trade agreements exhibits significant short- and long-run distortion reducing effects. By contrast, WTO’s Uruguay Agreement on Agriculture has not been able to systematically contribute to a reduction in agriculture trade distortions. From a policy point of view our findings thus point to a lack of effectiveness of multilateral trade negotiations.
    Keywords: Agricultural distortions; WTO; bilateral trade agreements, panel data
    JEL: C23 C26 F13 F14
    Date: 2017–01
  25. By: Murnaghan, Kitty
    Abstract: During a time in which the subject of climate change is deemed high on the list of priorities of many governments, it is important to assess to what extent policies in this field are achieving meaningful results. The link between energy usage and global warming is clear and today in the European Union the use of renewable resources is being promoted more than ever before. The move towards a renewables based economy has clear benefits over a fossil fuel based one with regards to climate change and the environment, however if the implementation of renewables is not monitored and regulated then this is not a given by any means. Of the renewable resources, bioenergy has a high level of importance in the EU. For this reason, this paper will make a comprehensive evaluation of the EU's biofuel policy in order to assess what the driving forces behind the regulation of this resource are, and how they affect to what extent it is successful or not. In order to do this, firstly the impacts of current EU bioenergy consumption will be assessed, to determine whether it is achieving the stated and desired climate goals or not. Findings will show that in fact the current formulation of Europe's Renewable Strategy creates pressure to meet binding targets for renewable usage and the resultant rapid increase in the demand for bioenergy has caused a number of negative social and ecological impacts to arise. Therefore in light of this, the current systems in place at the EU level meant to regulate the use of bioenergy and ensure it is implemented in a sustainable way will be critically analysed in order to find out how such negative impacts have been able to occur. The final section will then look into the driving forces responsible for regulation of this kind through a case study of Germany and Indonesia.
    Keywords: European Union energy policy,agrofuel,biofuel,renewable energy,sustainability criteria
    JEL: Q16 Q28 Q21 Q56 F23 K32
    Date: 2017
  26. By: Rashid, Shahidur; Minot, Nicholas; Lemma, Solomon
    Abstract: The impressive growth in aquaculture is now commonly dubbed a “blue revolution.†In some Asian countries, fish availability has increased at a faster rate in recent decades than did cereal availability during the Green Revolution. As an example, Bangladesh is one country where aquaculture has increased almost eightfold since the early 1990s. This growth has important implications for food and nutrition securities. Yet, there is little research on the determinants and impacts of this growth to document the lessons, identify evolving issues, and guide policy discussions. This paper attempts to fill that gap. Using several rounds of nationally representative household survey data, the authors conducted microsimulations to generate disaggregated estimates. The results show that, between 2000 and 2010, about 12 percent of Bangladesh’s overall poverty reduction can be attributed to aquaculture growth. In other words, of the 18 million Bangladeshis who escaped poverty during this period, more than 2 million of them managed to do so because of the growth in aquaculture. However, the results vary widely across income groups, with households in the third income quintile (which is not the poorest) benefiting the most. The implications of the results, methodological issues, and areas of future research are also discussed.
    Keywords: aquaculture, poverty, prices, fisheries, food security, nutrition security, households, surveys,
    Date: 2016
  27. By: Elum, Zelda; Modise, David; Marr, Ana
    Abstract: The world has responded to climate change phenomenon through two broad response mechanisms (mitigation and adaptation strategies) with the aim of moderating the adverse effects of climate change and/or to exploit any arising beneficial opportunities. The paper aims to examine the trend in climate parameters, farmers’ perception of climate change, constraints faced in production and to identify the strategies (if any) that farmers have adopted to cope with the effects of changing climate. A one-way analysis of variance, percentage analysis and Garrett ranking technique were applied to a set of primary data collected from 150 randomly sampled farmers with the aid of questionnaires in three purposively selected provinces through the months of June to August 2015. The analytical results of obtained recent weather data revealed that the climate parameters have significantly changed over time and these were substantiated by farmers’ experiences. The farmers are engaging in various climate-response strategies, among which, the planting of drought-tolerant varieties is most common. Therefore, it is important to enhance farmers’ access to improved drought-tolerant seeds and efficient irrigation systems. Also observed, is that the lack of awareness of insurance products and inability to afford insurance premiums were the principal reasons majority of the farmers did not have insurance. These present a need to strengthen insurance adoption among farmers through various supporting programmes that may include premium subsidies and media outreach. The paper under one platform provides evidence of changing climate, farmers’ responses towards mitigating perceived adverse effects of the changed climate, and South Africa’s national policy on adaptation and mitigation.
    Keywords: Perception; Climate change; Vulnerability; Mitigation; Adaptation; farmers; South Africa
    Date: 2016–11–29
  28. By: Janda, Karel; Stankus, Elena
    Abstract: This paper provides an overview of biofuel’s markets Ukraine. While Ukraine has great competitive advantage in the production of biofuels based on availability of the feedstock and fertile soils, it does not utilize this opportunity despite the policy goal of decreasing energy dependence on Russian fossil fuels. In the recent years Ukraine was working on fulfilment of European standards in the sector of biofuels. Most importantly, as opposed to Russia, Ukraine has built legislative base which aims to support the industry development and offer large scale of benefits. But due to high excise duty, low oil prices and no penalties for not achieving established indicators, the biofuel industry still stays non-operating.
    Keywords: Eastern Europe; Biofuels; Ethanol; Biodiesel
    JEL: P28 Q16 Q42 R11
    Date: 2017–02–10
  29. By: Nyhodo, Bonani; Ntshangase, Thandeka; Ngqangweni, Simphiwe
    Abstract: The possible erosion of preferential market access, South Africa’s access to the USA market under AGOA, is expected to lead to losses in the South Africa economy, albeit minimal. This study used, as a policy shock, the introduction by USA of applied tariffs on selected imported agricultural products (beverages and tobacco; sugar; and vegetables, fruits and nuts) from South Africa. The methodology used to quantify the effects of the stated policy change is the standard GTAP model with database from GTAP database version 7. In terms of the overall effect (looking at Equivalence Variation, EV, in the case of GTAP model) the South African economy stands to lose about $3.11 million as a result of the removal of the preferential access under AGOA. These losses will be driven mostly by losses on terms of trade and allocative efficiencies while other effects are contributing positively (even though very minimally). The quantities of industry outputs for the selected products are expected to decline while the rest will benefit positively. The trade balance for the selected products stand to worsen while other products are expected to benefit (driven by reduction in exports). There will also be labour demand loses (loss of jobs); capital demand loses (reduction in investments) coupled with shift in the land demand. Overall the economy stands to lose because of the erosion of the AGOA treatment.
    Keywords: Agricultural and Food Policy, Consumer/Household Economics, Demand and Price Analysis, Food Security and Poverty, International Relations/Trade, Livestock Production/Industries, Political Economy,
    Date: 2016
  30. By: Jean-Paul Faguet; Fabio Sánchez; Marta-Juanita Villaveces
    Abstract: Over two centuries, Colombia transferred vast quantities of land, equivalent to the entire UK landmass, mainly to landless peasants. And yet Colombia retains one of the highest concentrations of land ownership in the world. Why? We show that land reform’s effects are highly bimodal. Most of Colombia’s 1100+ municipalities lack a landed elite. Here, rural properties grew larger, land inequality and dispersion fell, and development indicators improved. But in municipalities where such an elite does exist and landholding is highly concentrated, such positive effects are counteracted, resulting in smaller rural properties, greater dispersion, and lower levels of development. We show that all of these effects – positive and negative – flow through local policy, which elites distort to benefit themselves. Our evidence implies that land reform’s second-order effects, on the distribution of local power, are more important than its first-order effects on the distribution of land.
    Keywords: Land reform; inequality; development; latifundia; poverty; Colombia
    JEL: Q15
    Date: 2017–02
  31. By: Kurmas Akdogan
    Abstract: The high volatility in food prices in the last decade is a major concern for policymakers across the globe. This study tests if there is mean-reverting behaviour in the unprocessed food prices towards a long-run trend, for twenty-four European countries, using linear and nonlinear unit root tests. The results indicate linear or non-linear mean reversion for more than one-third of the group. Non-linear models are useful in detecting asymmetric correction behaviour, depending on the size and sign of the deviation from the mean. However, out-of-sample forecasting performances of these models are poor relative to a simple autoregressive benchmark.
    Keywords: Food prices, Unit root test, Nonlinearity, Forecasting
    JEL: Q11 C32 C53
    Date: 2017
  32. By: Onasis Tharcisse Adétumi GUEDEGBE
    Abstract: Trade integration is a prerequisite for the success of any economic integration project. The factors hindering trade integration therefore constitute a bottleneck to the economic integration project of the countries of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which is an effective means of coping with the substantial expansion of sub-regional food demand. The aim of this paper is to highlight the factors that constrain trade flows and increase the cost of trade in the Community. It focuses on three categories of factors: tariff measures, non-tariff measures and the quality of infrastructure and logistics. It emerges that the question of rules of origin and delays in compliance with the agreements seem to hamper the process of liberalization. Non-tariff barriers are ubiquitous and fairly diverse, as are the procedural barriers associated with them. Finally, trade remains hampered by medium to low levels of logistics performance and infrastructure quality
    Date: 2016–12
  33. By: Choudhury, Samira; Headey, Derek D.
    Abstract: Although the diversification of national food supplies (DFS) is a necessary (but not sufficient) condition for the diversification of diets and for reductions in undernutrition in poor countries, little previous research has analyzed how DFS varies across countries and regions, how rapidly it has changed over time, and what economic, social, and agroecological factors may be driving these observed patterns and trends in DFS. The study addresses those questions through a cross-country analysis. We first review economic theory and evidence on the diversification of production and diets in developing countries, particularly the importance of economic growth and other structural transformation processes, as well as the scope for agroecological factors to shape consumption outcomes in the presence of market imperfections, such as high transport costs. We then construct and analyze a rich cross-country dataset linking a simple DFS indicator—the share of calories supplied by nonstaple foods—with a wide range of economic, social, infrastructural, and agroecological indicators. Descriptive evidence and regression analyses show that several indicators of structural transformation (economic growth, urbanization, and demographic change) are strong predictors of DFS within countries. However, the results also suggest that time-invariant agroecological factors are significantly associated with DFS, such that some countries have exceptionally low or high DFS relative to their level of economic development. We discuss the implications of these findings for food and nutrition strategies, particularly the challenge of accelerating dietary diversification in the absence of sustained and very rapid economic growth and structural transformation, especially in countries where agroecological conditions additionally hinder access to a more diverse food basket.
    Keywords: nutrition, diet, food supply, diet preferences,
    Date: 2016
  34. By: Kamiar Mohaddes; Mehdi Raissi
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of commodity terms of trade (CToT) volatility on economic growth (and its sources) in a sample of 69 commodity-dependent countries, and assesses the role of Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) and quality of institutions in their long-term growth performance. Using annual data over the period 1981-2014, we employ the Cross-Sectionally augmented Autoregressive Distributive Lag (CS-ARDL) methodology for estimation to account for cross-country heterogeneity, cross-sectional dependence, and feedback effects. We find that while CToT volatility exerts a negative impact on economic growth (operating through lower accumulation of physical capital and lower TFP), the average impact is dampened if a country has a SWF and better institutional quality (hence a more stable government expenditure).
    Keywords: Economic growth, commodity prices, volatility, sovereign wealth funds
    JEL: C23 E32 F43 O13 O40
    Date: 2017–02
  35. By: Lambrecht, Isabel; Ragasa, Catherine
    Abstract: Contract farming (CF) is attractive as a possible private-sector-led strategy for improving smallholder farmers’ welfare. Yet many CF schemes suffer from high turnover of participating farmers and struggle to survive. So far, the dynamics of CF participation have remained largely unexplored. We employ duration analysis to examine factors affecting entry into and exit from different maize CF schemes in northern Ghana, focusing specifically on the impact of development projects on CF entry and exit. We find that agricultural development projects reduce the likelihood of scheme entry and increase the likelihood of exit. Our findings confirm concerns that, if interventions are not planned in accordance with relevant private-sector actors, private-sector initiatives can be hindered by competing development projects.
    Keywords: contract farming, economic development, private sector, smallholders, maize, farming systems, agricultural development,
    Date: 2016
  36. By: Agarwal, Sandip; Jacobs, Keri L.; Weninger, Quinn
    Abstract: In the spring of 2014, we conducted a survey of Iowa crop producers to (1) learn about common nutrient management practices, and (2) to elicit farmers' subjective beliefs about the weather and crop growth uncertainty they face when making nutrient management decisions. The survey is part of a larger study that seeks to uncover the subjective or perceived relationship between nitrogen application practices, e.g., quantity, timing, application method, and crop yield outcomes. This paper provides a rationale for measuring subjective beliefs in the context of decision making under uncertainty and discusses specific design elements of the 2014 survey instrument. We provide summary statistics for the information that was gathered and discuss lessons learned from the pilot study.
    Date: 2016–01–01
  37. By: Jean Balié (Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, Rome (IT).); Davide Del Prete (IMT Lucca, Laboratory for the Analysis of Complex Economic Systems (IT) and Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, Rome (IT).); Emiliano Magrini (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome (IT).); Pierluigi Montalbano (Department of Economics and Social Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome (IT).); Silvia Nenci (Department of Economics, University of Roma Tre (IT))
    Abstract: The most recent literature on international trade highlights the key role of global value chains (GVCs) in structural transformation, development and growth. The common perception is that Africa, unlike most Latin American and Asian countries, has neither been able to intercept the main changes in trade patterns nor enter massively into global production networks. This work provides some insight into this topic. Using the EORA Input-Output Tables, we analyze whether bilateral import tariffs and shifts in trade regimes associated with regional trade agreements affect the backward participation (i.e., the use of foreign inputs for exports) and forward participation (i.e., the use of domestic intermediates in third country exports) of the SSA countries’ agriculture and food GVCs. Our results show that, despite their low world trade shares, GVC participation in SSA economies is increasing over time, mainly upstream as suppliers of unprocessed inputs. Furthermore, we show that the value added demand for SSA agricultural products primarily originates from the EU and emerging countries rather than from regional partners. Finally, by making use of a “gravity-like” identification strategy, we also find evidence that bilateral trade protection significantly affects GVC backward and forward participation in agriculture and food. These results call for a refinement of trade policy priorities in SSA.
    Keywords: global value chains, agro-food activities, multi-region input-output tables, bilateral trade policies, gravity model, Sub-Saharan Africa.
    JEL: F15 L23 O11 O55 Q17
    Date: 2017–04
  38. By: Diao, Xinshen; Fang, Peixun; Magalhaes, Eduardo; Pahl, Stefan; Silver, Jed
    Abstract: Urbanization has had a major impact on livelihoods in Ghana and throughout Africa as a whole. However, much research on urbanization has focused on effects occurring within cities, while there is insufficient understanding of its effects on rural areas. This paper examines the impact of urbanization—through a typology of districts—on rural livelihoods in Ghana. The country’s districts are classified into seven spatial groups according to the size of the largest city in each district in southern and northern Ghana. The paper does not address rural–urban migration but instead focuses on the livelihoods of rural households. In contrast to the extensive literature focusing on the effects of urbanization on individuals, we assess its impacts on individual rural households as a whole, with a particular focus on youth-headed households. Many rural households have shifted their primary employment from agriculture to nonagriculture, especially in the more urbanized South. In contrast, change in livelihood diversification within rural households with family members’ primary employment in both agriculture and nonagriculture appears much less rapid. Rural youth-headed households are significantly more associated with the transition away from agriculture than households headed by other adults, and such trends are stronger in locations closer to larger cities, particularly in the South. Although the nonagricultural economy is becoming increasingly important for rural households, contrary to expectations, the probit model analysis in this paper shows that agricultural production does not appear to be more intensified—in terms of modern input use—in the more urbanized South, and youth do not show greater agricultural technology adoption than other adults, indicating that the constraints against modern input adoption may be binding for all farmers, including youth and farmers in more urbanized locations. We also find that rural poverty rates are consistently lower among nonagricultural households, and the share of middle-class population is also disproportionally higher among rural nonagricultural households than agricultural households. While the probit analysis confirms the positive relationship between being a nonagricultural household and being nonpoor or becoming middle class after controlling for all other factors, education seems to play the biggest role. As rural youth become more educated and more households shift from agriculture to the rural nonfarm economy, a different range of technologies for agricultural intensification is necessary for agriculture to be attractive for youth. A territorial approach and related policies that integrate secondary cities and small towns with the rural economy deserve more attention such that the diversification of rural livelihoods can become a viable alternative or complement to rural–urban migration for youth.
    Keywords: urbanization, youth, employment, off farm employment, nonfarm income,
    Date: 2017
  39. By: Arvid Bring; Eric Sjöberg
    Abstract: A growing body of evidence suggests a link between climate and conflict. In contrast, the link between climate and cooperation remains much less investigated, although it has been studied in the context of transboundary river basins. Even for transboundary waters, however, earlier results have not decisively answered whether the effect of climate on conflict or on cooperation is stronger. Here we concurrently investigate both cooperation and conflict in transboundary river basins across the world as two potential responses to changes in climatic factors. Our results indicate that one-standard deviation changes in climate variables affect cooperation more than conflict in absolute terms, although effects on conflict are large in relative terms. Furthermore, lower water availability is associated with worse outcomes both through fewer cooperation events and more frequent conflicts. While higher temperatures are associated with more frequent cooperation, the projected decrease in precipitation and soil moisture projected for many regions of the globe may offset positive effects of temperature, and reinforcing cooperative activities should therefore be a policy priority. It is clear that including a full set of potential responses – positive, negative and none - are needed to understand the climatic influence on regional human cooperation and conflict. We encourage further studies that investigate such full-spectrum effects also for other situations than transboundary river basins.
    Keywords: Climate and conflict, Transboundary rivers, Water resources, International river basins, Econometrics, Cooperation. JEL Classification: Q25, Q54, Q56
    Date: 2017
  40. By: Houssou, Nazaire; Andam, Kwaw S.; Collins, Asante-Addo
    Abstract: Despite improvements to the implementation regime of Ghana’s fertilizer subsidy program, this paper shows that considerable challenges remain in ensuring that the subsidy is targeted to farmers who need fertilizer the most. Currently, larger-scale and wealthier farmers are the main beneficiaries of subsidized fertilizer even though the stated goal is to target smallholder farmers with fertilizer subsidies. The experience of other African countries suggests that the effectiveness of fertilizer subsidies can improve with effective targeting of resource-poor smallholders. However, targeting smallholder farmers entails significant transaction costs and may even be infeasible in some cases. Faced with such challenges, Ghanaian policy makers must ponder the question of how to improve the targeting of input subsidy programs in the country. Further research is needed to identify more cost-effective approaches for achieving the goal of targeting.
    Keywords: GHANA; WEST AFRICA; AFRICA SOUTH OF SAHARA; AFRICA, smallholders; fertilizers; farm inputs; subsidies; resources; inputs, targeting; fertilizer subsidy; smallholder farmers; SSA,
    Date: 2017
  41. By: Nikolaos Antonakakis (Webster Vienna Private University, Department of Business and Management, Austria and University of Portsmouth, Economics and Finance Subject Group,UK); Mehmet Balcilar (Department of Economics, Eastern Mediterranean University, Northern Cyprus, Turkey.); Elie Bouri (USEK Business School, Holy Spirit University of Kaslik, Jounieh, Lebanon.); Rangan Gupta (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa)
    Abstract: Unlike the extant literature on safe-havens, where one aims to relate the movements in an asset considered with extreme episodes in equity markets, we test this property for fine wine by relating it to global uncertainty. Using a nonparametric k-th order causality-in-quantiles test, we show that, while uncertainty does affect returns and/or variance of the alternative wine indices considered, this effect is restricted to only certain parts of the conditional distribution. In particular, wine seems to be unaffected by global uncertainty, and hence, acts as a safe-haven at extreme ends of the market, i.e., during bear or bullish times; but not during normal times (around the median of the conditional distribution of returns and/or volatility).
    Keywords: Wine Returns and Volatility, Global Uncertainty, Safe-Haven, Nonparametric Quantile Causality
    JEL: C22 Q02
    Date: 2017–02
  42. By: Bensch, Gunther; Kreibaum, Merle; Mbegalo, Tukae; Peters, Jörg; Wagner, Natascha
    Abstract: More than 1.1 billion people in developing countries lack access to electricity with a large share living in rural Africa. It is hypothesized that economic and human development are difficult without electricity access. Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world and the country's huge geographical extent and low population density makes infrastructure development such as electrification a particularly difficult exercise. The electrification rate is extremely low at around 46 percent in urban and 4 percent in rural areas. The access to reliable modern energy has become one of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (UN 2014) and the international community has embarked on a historical mission through the United Nations initiative Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) that strives to provide electricity to everybody by 2030. Investment requirements to achieve this goal are enormous and large gaps exist so far. Additional investment initiatives are required.
    Date: 2016

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.