Can Peers Improve Agricultural Productivity?

55 Pages Posted: 30 Sep 2014

See all articles by Tisorn Songsermsawas

Tisorn Songsermsawas

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Kathy Baylis

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics

Ashwini Chhatre

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Hope C. Michelson

Columbia University - Columbia Earth Institute

Date Written: September 29, 2014

Abstract

Productivity varies greatly among farmers and the source of that variation is not fully understood. Using a unique Indian household survey, we estimate peer effects on agricultural revenue. Results show that 60% of farmers' revenue is explained by peers. Input expenditures and land allocation to cash crops do not fully explain the variation in revenue, implying peers may also affect management, negotiation and marketing strategies. We verify that endogenous network formation, geography, off-farm opportunities and agricultural extension do not drive our results. Peer effects are strongest for agricultural peers and in the cultivation of a new crop.

Keywords: peer effects, agricultural productivity, India, crop revenue

JEL Classification: C210, D850, Q120

Suggested Citation

Songsermsawas, Tisorn and Baylis, Kathy and Chhatre, Ashwini and Michelson, Hope C., Can Peers Improve Agricultural Productivity? (September 29, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2502809 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2502809

Tisorn Songsermsawas

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ( email )

601 E John St
Champaign, IL 61820
United States

Kathy Baylis (Contact Author)

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics ( email )

1301 W. Gregory Drive
Urbana, IL 61801
United States

Ashwini Chhatre

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

601 E John St
Champaign, IL 61820
United States

Hope C. Michelson

Columbia University - Columbia Earth Institute ( email )

314 Low Library
535 West 116th Street, MC 4327
New York, NY 10027
United States

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