nep-evo New Economics Papers
on Evolutionary Economics
Issue of 2015‒11‒07
two papers chosen by
Matthew Baker
City University of New York

  1. Boserup versus Malthis: does population pressure drive agricultural intensification? Evidence from Burundi By Desiere, Sam; D'Haese, Marijke
  2. Leadership and persistency in spontaneuous dishonesty By Susanne Braun; Lars Hornuf

  1. By: Desiere, Sam; D'Haese, Marijke
    Abstract: Will a growing population lead to depletion of natural resources and eventually economic collapse, as predicted by Malthus, or rather to innovations in the agricultural sector improving agricultural potential of land, as hypothesized by Boserup? This centuries-old puzzle is as relevant as ever in some densely populated regions of Sub-Saharan Africa where population growth is still alarmingly high and shows no sign of slowing down, leading to enormous pressure on land. In this paper, we quantify the relationship between population pressure and land intensification in Burundi, one of the most densely populated regions in Africa. Using data from a nationally representative agricultural survey (n=2050), we find evidence of both Malthusian and Boserupian processes. In line with Boserup’s theory, the use of fertilizer and labour, yields and food production initially increases with population pressure, but decreases again when population densities exceed a critical threshold, supporting Malthus’ prediction. These limits to intensification confirm findings from previous studies on densely populated regions in Sub-Saharan Africa.
    Keywords: Agribusiness, Crop Production/Industries,
    Date: 2015
  2. By: Susanne Braun (, Durham University,Business School); Lars Hornuf (Institute for Industrial Relations and Labour Law in the European Union,)
    Abstract: Extensive evidence shows that when given the opportunity, people cheat for monetary rewards, but only to the extent that they can keep a positive self-concept. In this study, we investigate various factors that may influence the degree to which people can keep their positive self-concept while cheating for monetary gains. We find that authentic leadership, gender, cheating norm, experience of cheating, and expectations of others’ cheating behavior have no effect on participants’ spontaneous dishonestyon an abstract task. Therefore, reducing people’s cheating behavior might be a long-term project for the management of fraudulent organizations and more difficult than might be expected.
    Keywords: Cheating, Dishonest behavior, Authentic leadership, self-concept maintenance
    JEL: C92 J53 M5
    Date: 2015–10

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