Agricultural Development: Issues, Evidence, and Consequences

46 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Al Crego

Al Crego

World Bank

Yair Mundlak

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Department of Agricultural Economics and Management

Donald F. Larson

Institute for the Theory and Practice of International Relations

Date Written: August 1, 1997

Abstract

Investments in technology have yielded large gains for agriculture, and the benefits have been passed on to consumers in the form of lower prices. Thus history justifies public spending on agricultural research.

A comprehensive examination of data from many countries shows that in 1967-92, 81 percent of the world's population lived in countries where agricultural growth exceeded population growth. Moreover, that growth occurred as agricultural prices declined.

Productivity gains are a dominant characteristic of agriculture for the period. Average productivity increased for land and labor. Moreover, agricultural productivity gains were greater than average productivity gains for the economy in 80 percent of the countries studied.

Measuring the effects of technology choice on productivity is crucial to understanding the determinants of agricultural growth. After selectively reviewing applied production studies, Mundlak, Larson, and Crego conclude that the choice-of-technique method, which has its roots in Tinter`s early production function studies, is best suited for examining the determinants of agricultural growth.

Investments in technology have yielded large gains for agriculture, and the benefits have been passed on to consumers in the form of lower prices. Thus history justifies public spending on agricultural research.

This paper - a product of the Development Research Group - is part of a larger effort in the group to examine the determinants of agricultural growth. The study was funded by the Bank`s Research Support Budget under the research project The Determinants of Agricultural Growth (RPO 679-03).

Suggested Citation

Crego, Al and Mundlak, Yair and Larson, Donald F., Agricultural Development: Issues, Evidence, and Consequences (August 1, 1997). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 1811. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=623884

Al Crego

World Bank

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Yair Mundlak (Contact Author)

Hebrew University of Jerusalem - Department of Agricultural Economics and Management ( email )

P.O. Box 12
Rehovot, 76100
Israel

Donald F. Larson

Institute for the Theory and Practice of International Relations ( email )

P.O. Box 8795
Williamsburg, VA 23185
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/site/decrgdonaldflarson/

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