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Assessing the Functioning of Land Rental Markets in Ethiopia

Although a large theoretical literature discusses the possible inefficiency of sharecropping contracts, empirical evidence on this phenomenon has been ambiguous at best. Household‐level fixed‐effect estimates from about 8,500 plots operated by households that own and sharecrop land in the Ethiopian highlands provide support for the hypothesis of Marshallian inefficiency.


Producer-level Benefits of Sustainability Certification

Initiatives certifying that producers of goods and services adhere to defined environmental and social-welfare production standards are increasingly popular. According to proponents, these initiatives create financial incentives for producers to improve their environmental, social, and economic performance. We reviewed the evidence on whether these initiatives have such benefits.


Importance of Irrigated Agriculture to the Ethiopian Economy: Capturing the direct net benefits of irrigation

Irrigation development has been identified as an important tool to stimulate economic growth and rural development, and is considered as a cornerstone of food security and poverty reduction in Ethiopia. While a lot of effort is being exerted towards irrigation development, little attempt is being made to quantify the contribution of irrigation to national income. This study is an attempt in that direction by quantifying the actual and expected contribution of irrigation to the Ethiopian national economy for the 2005/2006 and 2009/2010 cropping seasons using the adjusted net gross margin analysis.


Tenure security, resource poverty, public programs, and household plot-level conservation investments in the highlands of northern Ethiopia

Land degradation poses a serious problem for the livelihoods of rural producers. Furthermore, there is rarely enough private investment taking place to commensurate the scale of the problem. This article examines the role of tenure insecurity, resource poverty, risk and time preferences, and community-led land conservation on differentiated patterns of household investment in land conservation in northern Ethiopia.


The Effect of Ambiguous Risk and Coordination on Farmer´s Adaptation to Climate Change-A Framed Field Experiment

The risk of losses of income and productive means due to adverse weather can differ significantly among farmers sharing a productive landscape, and is of course hard to estimate, or even “guesstimate” empirically. Moreover, the costs associated with investments in reduced vulnerability to climatic events are likely to exhibit economies of scope. We explore the implications of these characteristics on farmer's decisions to adapt to climate change using a framed field experiment applied to coffee farmers in Costa Rica. As expected, we find high levels of risk aversion, but even using that as a baseline, we further find that farmers behave even more cautiously when the setting is characterized by unknown or ambiguous risk (i.e. poor or non-reliable risk information). Secondly, we find that farmers, to a large extent, coordinated their decisions to secure a lower adaptation cost, and that communication among farmers strongly facilitated coordination.


Land and water institutions in the Blue Nile Basin: Setups and gaps for improved land and water management

This study undertook an assessment and gap analysis of the institutional arrangements for improved land and water management in the Tana and Beles Sub-basins highlands of the Blue Nile Basin. We explored the mandates and design features of the major land- and water-related institutional arrangements. Focus group discussions, key informant interviews, and a literature review were used in the analysis.


A green revolution betrayed? Seed technology and small-scale maize farmers in Zimbabwe

Since the 1960s both large- and small-scale Zimbabwean maize farmers have been replacing open pollinated varieties (OPVs) with locally developed hybrids. By the 1990s, most were buying hybrid seed, though the adoption rates of new seed types were slowing. With the collapse of the Zimbabwean economy many small farmers returned to planting OPVs and saving seed, not only because hybrid seed was unavailable but also as a rational response to economic risks.


What do respondents bring into contingent valuation? A comparison of monetary and labour payment vehicles

In the Contingent Valuation Method (CVM), both the goods being valued and the payment vehicles used to value them are mostly hypothetical. However, although numerous studies have examined the impact of experience with the good on the willingness to pay, less attention has been given to experience with the payment vehicles. This paper examines how experience with payment vehicles influences responses to a CV scenario on the maintenance of irrigation canals. Specifically, the paper uses a split-sample survey to investigate the effects of experience with monetary and labour payment vehicles on the acceptance of a CV scenario and protest bids. Using convergent validity tests, we found that experience acquired from using both monetary and labour payment vehicles reduces the asymmetries in acceptance rates. These findings suggest that experience with payment vehicles reduces time/money response asymmetries in the CVM.


Nudging Boserup? The impact of fertilizer subsidies on investment in soil and water conservation

The new fertilizer subsidies in Sub-Saharan Africa are intended to increase agricultural production and ensure fertilizer market development. Fertilizer adoption requires complementary inputs such as investment in soil and water conservation for efficient and optimal nutrient uptake, and many fertilizer subsidy programmes implicitly assume that fertilizer subsidies crowd in such investments. The present study, therefore, evaluates the impact of fertilizer subsidies on the provision of soil and water conservation efforts in Ghana.


Agricultural Investment and Productivity - Building Sustainability in East Africa

Agricultural Investment and Productivity provides a deep and systematic look at the opportunities for and constraints to investments in sustainable agriculture in East Africa, offering important insights into what works and how to analyze agricultural investments in one of the poorest regions of the world. The book critically examines the reasons behind East Africa's stagnant agricultural productivity over the past forty-five years, using the primary lens of investments in fertilizers, seeds, and sustainable land management technologies, These investments have a tremendous impact on production volume, ultimately affecting the income of millions of families throughout the region.


Including Carbon Emissions from Deforestation in the Carbon Footprint of Beef

Effects of land use changes are starting to be included in estimates of life-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, so-called carbon footprints (CFs), from food production. Their omission can lead to serious underestimates, particularly for meat. Here we estimate emissions from the conversion of forest to pasture in the Legal Amazon Region (LAR) of Brazil and present a model to distribute the emissions from deforestation over products and time subsequent to the land use change.


Impacts of the Productive Safety Net Program in Ethiopia on livestock

We evaluated the impacts of the Ethiopian Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) on rural households' holdings of livestock and forest assets/trees. We found no indication that participation in PSNP induces households to disinvest in livestock or trees. In fact, households that participated in the program increased the number of trees planted, but there was no increase in their livestock holdings.