Risk as Impediment to Privatization? The Role of Collective Fields in Extended Agricultural Households
AbstractAs in the case of agricultural cooperatives, collective fields in extended agricultural households act as an insurance device, by redistributing income between household members. At the same time they entail inefficiencies arising from the incentives to free ride on co-workers efforts. Privatization solves the latter problem but comes at a cost of lower risk-sharing (Carter, 1987). The classic analysis of the trade-off between efficiency and risk-sharing rules out another major risk-sharing mechanism, namely voluntary interpersonal transfers. This paper is a first attempt to merge the two insurance mechanisms: collective production, which is plagued by free riding and income transfers, which are hampered by limited commitment. Privatization of land is shown to interact with incentives to abide by the insurance agreement, so that the tradeoff between risk-sharing and production efficiency may or may not be maintained with income transfers. We show that an increase in the value of the household members’ exit option or a decrease in patience decreases the optimal rate of privatization. With the help of numerical simulations we argue that households of greater size are also more likely to privatize land.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Namur, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1211.
Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2012
Date of revision:
risk-sharing; land; family; privatization;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
- O12 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
- Q12 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Micro Analysis of Farm Firms, Farm Households, and Farm Input Markets
- Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2012-11-17 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2012-11-17 (All new papers)
- NEP-IAS-2012-11-17 (Insurance Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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1108, University of Namur, Department of Economics.
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- Jean-Marie Baland & Patrick Francois, 2003. "Commons as Insurance and the Welfare Impact of Privatization," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 03/069, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
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- Coate, Stephen & Ravallion, Martin, 1993. "Reciprocity without commitment : Characterization and performance of informal insurance arrangements," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 1-24, February.
- Subhrendu K. Pattanayak & Erin O. Sills, 2001. "Do Tropical Forests Provide Natural Insurance? The Microeconomics of Non-Timber Forest Product Collection in the Brazilian Amazon," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 77(4), pages 595-612.
- Udry, Christopher, 1996. "Gender, Agricultural Production, and the Theory of the Household," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(5), pages 1010-46, October.
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