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Hazardous Agrochemicals, Smoking, and Farmers’ Differences in Wage-Risk Tradeoffs

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  • Nastis, Stefanos A.
  • Michailidis, Anastasios

Abstract

This paper utilizes the theory of compensating differentials for job risks from the labor economics literature to evaluate farmers’ differences in wage-risk tradeoffs. In the context of job risks, the theory predicts that farmers who place a lower value on health status are willing to work for lower compensation on a risky job. The aim of the paper is to evaluate how the observed wage-risk tradeoff is affected by individual heterogeneity in risk preferences, by acknowledging variations in farmers’ revealed attitudes toward risk, both in job-related and non-job activities. The job risk measure employed is self-reported job risk of low back pain, the most recurring health risk faced by farmers. The job-related risky activity is the application of hazardous agrochemicals. The non-job activity is smoking. The primary finding of the study is that individual heterogeneity in risk attitudes is an important determinant of the risk premium workers receive, i.e., individual differences in other health-related activities are influential determinants of the observed wage-risk tradeoff. Keywords:

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by European Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 120th Seminar, September 2-4, 2010, Chania, Crete with number 109389.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:ags:eaa120:109389

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Keywords: agrochemicals; smoking; farming job risk; compensating differentials; risk preferences; health impairment; Agribusiness; Farm Management; Health Economics and Policy; Labor and Human Capital;

References

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  1. Hersch, Joni & Pickton, Todd S, 1995. "Risk-Taking Activities and Heterogeneity of Job-Risk Tradeoffs," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 205-17, December.
  2. Joni Hersch & W. Kip Viscusi, 1990. "Cigarette Smoking, Seatbelt Use, and Differences in Wage-Risk Tradeoffs," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(2), pages 202-227.
  3. Richard Thaler & Sherwin Rosen, 1976. "The Value of Saving a Life: Evidence from the Labor Market," NBER Chapters, in: Household Production and Consumption, pages 265-302 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ehrlich, Isaac & Becker, Gary S, 1972. "Market Insurance, Self-Insurance, and Self-Protection," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(4), pages 623-48, July-Aug..
  5. Viscusi, W Kip, 1993. "The Value of Risks to Life and Health," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(4), pages 1912-46, December.
  6. Maria Travisi, Chiara & Nijkamp, Peter & Vindigni, Gabriella, 2006. "Pesticide risk valuation in empirical economics: a comparative approach," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(4), pages 455-474, April.
  7. Viscusi, W Kip & O'Connor, Charles J, 1984. "Adaptive Responses to Chemical Labeling: Are Workers Bayesian Decision Makers?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(5), pages 942-56, December.
  8. Viscusi, W Kip & Moore, Michael J, 1987. "Workers' Compensation: Wage Effects, Benefit Inadequacies, and the Value of Health Losses," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(2), pages 249-61, May.
  9. Moore, Michael J & Viscusi, W Kip, 1988. "The Quantity-Adjusted Value of Life," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 26(3), pages 369-88, July.
  10. Phillip B. Levine & Tara Gustafson & Ann D. Velenchik, 1997. "More bad news for smokers? The effects of cigarette smoking on wages," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 50(3), pages 493-509, April.
  11. Michael J. Moore & W. Kip Viscusi, 1987. "Doubling the estimated value of life: Results using new occupational fatality data," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 7(3), pages 476-490.
  12. Harwood, Joy L. & Heifner, Richard G. & Coble, Keith H. & Perry, Janet E. & Somwaru, Agapi, 1999. "Managing Risk in Farming: Concepts, Research, and Analysis," Agricultural Economics Reports 34081, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
  13. Grossman, Michael, 1972. "On the Concept of Health Capital and the Demand for Health," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(2), pages 223-55, March-Apr.
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