Better Technology, Better Plots, or Better Farmers? Identifying Changes in Productivity and Risk Among Malagasy Rice Farmers

Posted: 30 Sep 2004

See all articles by Christopher B. Barrett

Christopher B. Barrett

Cornell University - Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management

Christine M. Moser

Cornell University - Department of Economics and Management

Oloro V. McHugh

Cornell University - Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering

Joeli Barison

Cornell University - Department of Soil, Crop and Atmospheric Sciences

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Abstract

We introduce a method for properly attributing observed productivity and risk changes among new production methods, farmers, and plots by controlling for farmer and plot heterogeneity. Results from Madagascar show that the new system of rice intensification (SRI) is indeed a superior technology. Although about half of the observed productivity gains appear due to farmer characteristics rather than SRI itself, the technology generates the estimated average output gains of more than 84%. The increased estimated yield risk associated with SRI would nonetheless make it unattractive to many farmers within the standard range of relative risk aversion.

Suggested Citation

Barrett, Christopher B. and Moser, Christine M. and McHugh, Oloro V. and Barison, Joeli, Better Technology, Better Plots, or Better Farmers? Identifying Changes in Productivity and Risk Among Malagasy Rice Farmers. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=595042

Christopher B. Barrett (Contact Author)

Cornell University - Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management ( email )

315 Warren Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853-7801
United States
607-255-4489 (Phone)
607-255-9984 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://aem.cornell.edu/faculty_sites/cbb2/

Christine M. Moser

Cornell University - Department of Economics and Management ( email )

206 Warren Hall Campus
Ithaca, NY 14853-7601
United States
607-272-0496 (Phone)

Oloro V. McHugh

Cornell University - Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering ( email )

58 Riley-Robb
Ithaca, NY 14853
United States
607-255-2463 (Phone)

Joeli Barison

Cornell University - Department of Soil, Crop and Atmospheric Sciences ( email )

610 Bradfield Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853
United States
607-254-1244 (Phone)

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