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Does size of operated area matter? Evidence from Malawi's agricultural production

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  • Matchaya, Greenwell C.

Abstract

The objective of this paper was to examine the relationship between farm size and agricultural productivity using data from Malawi. This paper has examined the relationship using ordinary least squares regression with heteroskedasticity consistent covariance matrix (HC3) standard errors having confirmed absence of endogeneity of farm size. The major finding is that, contrary to the findings of earlier studies which reported a positive relationship, there is strong evidence that probably the post market liberalization period (1990s) became characterized by an inverse farm size productivity relationship. This finding suggests that well-thought-after land and credit market interventions or land redistribution from the rich to the land poor households would possibly raise total output thorough productivity gains.

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File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/11948/
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 11948.

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Date of creation: 04 Dec 2007
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Publication status: Published in International Journal of Agriculture and Rural Development (IJARD) 2.10(2007): pp. 114-125
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:11948

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Keywords: Farm size; Productivity; Inverse Relationship; Malawi;

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  1. Assuncao, Juliano J. & Ghatak, Maitreesh, 2003. "Can unobserved heterogeneity in farmer ability explain the inverse relationship between farm size and productivity," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 189-194, August.
  2. Lamb, Russell L., 2003. "Inverse productivity: land quality, labor markets, and measurement error," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 71-95, June.
  3. Reardon, Thomas & Kelly, Valerie A. & Crawford, Eric W. & Jayne, Thomas S. & Savadogo, Kimseyinga & Clay, Daniel C., 1996. "Determinants of Farm Productivity in Africa: A Synthesis of Four Case Studies," Food Security International Development Policy Syntheses 11279, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
  4. Amartya K. Sen, 1966. "Peasants and Dualism with or without Surplus Labor," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74, pages 425.
  5. J. Taylor & Irma Adelman, 2003. "Agricultural Household Models: Genesis, Evolution, and Extensions," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 33-58, January.
  6. Byiringiro, Fidele & Reardon, Thomas, 1996. "Farm productivity in Rwanda: effects of farm size, erosion, and soil conservation investments," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 15(2), pages 127-136, November.
  7. Carter, Michael R, 1984. "Identification of the Inverse Relationship between Farm Size and Productivity: An Empirical Analysis of Peasant Agricultural Production," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 36(1), pages 131-45, March.
  8. Benjamin, Dwayne, 1995. "Can unobserved land quality explain the inverse productivity relationship?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 51-84, February.
  9. Feser, Edward J., 2001. "A flexible test for agglomeration economies in two US manufacturing industries," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 1-19, February.
  10. Deininger, Klaus & Zegarra, Eduardo & Lavadenz, Isabel, 2003. "Determinants and Impacts of Rural Land Market Activity: Evidence from Nicaragua," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(8), pages 1385-1404, August.
  11. Andrew Dorward, 1999. "Farm size and productivity in Malawian smallholder agriculture," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(5), pages 141-161.
  12. Barrett, Christopher B., 1996. "On price risk and the inverse farm size-productivity relationship," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 193-215, December.
  13. Ayal Kimhi, 2006. "Plot size and maize productivity in Zambia: is there an inverse relationship?," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 35(1), pages 1-9, 07.
  14. Townsend, R. F. & Kirsten, J. & Vink, N., 1998. "Farm size, productivity and returns to scale in agriculture revisited: a case study of wine producers in South Africa," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 19(1-2), pages 175-180, September.
  15. Michael Kevane, 1996. "Agrarian Structure and Agricultural Practice: Typology and Application to Western Sudan," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(1), pages 236-245.
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