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The Role of Soil Conservation on Mean Crop Yield and Variance of Yield: Evidence from the Ethiopian Highlands

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  • Kassie, Menale
  • Pender, John
  • Yesuf, Mahmud
  • Köhln, Gunnar
  • Mulugeta, Elias

Abstract

Land degradation has been one of the major areas of concern in Ethiopia. Governments and development agencies have invested substantial resources to promote land management technologies and reduce land degradation. However, there is little understanding of the impacts that land management technologies have on yield and yield variability. This paper investigates the impact of stone bunds on mean yield and variance of yield, using multiple plot observations per household in low- and high-rainfall areas of the Ethiopian highlands. Our analysis incorporated the propensity score matching method, stochastic dominance analysis, and exogenous and endogenous switching regression methods. We found statistically significant and positive impact of stone bunds on yield in low-rainfall areas. This did not hold in high-rainfall areas. We did not find a statistically significant stone-bund impact on production risk in either high- or low-rainfall areas. The results were robust to both parametric and non-parametric analysis. The overall conclusion from the analysis is that the performance of stone bunds varies by agro-ecology type. This implies the need for designing and implementing appropriate technologies that enhance productivity and are better adapted to local conditions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Resources For the Future in its series Discussion Papers with number dp-08-08-efd.

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Date of creation: 07 Mar 2008
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Handle: RePEc:rff:dpaper:dp-08-08-efd

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Related research

Keywords: Switching regression; stochastic dominance; propensity score matching; stone bunds; yield; yield risk; Ethiopia;

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  1. Phoebe Koundouri & Céline Nauges & Vangelis Tzouvelekas, 2006. "Technology Adoption under Production Uncertainty: Theory and Application to Irrigation Technology," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 88(3), pages 657-670.
  2. Kim, Kwansoo & Chavas, Jean-Paul, 2003. "Technological change and risk management: an application to the economics of corn production," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 29(2), pages 125-142, October.
  3. Sascha O. Becker & Andrea Ichino, 2002. "Estimation of average treatment effects based on propensity scores," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 2(4), pages 358-377, November.
  4. Shively, Gerald E., 2001. "Poverty, consumption risk, and soil conservation," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 267-290, August.
  5. Wagayehu Bekele, 2005. "Stochastic Dominance Analysis of Soil and Water Conservation in Subsistence Crop Production in the Eastern Ethiopian Highlands: The Case of the Hunde-Lafto Area," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 32(4), pages 533-550, December.
  6. Peter Ebbes & Ulf Böckenholt & Michel Wedel, 2004. "Regressor and random-effects dependencies in multilevel models," Statistica Neerlandica, Netherlands Society for Statistics and Operations Research, vol. 58(2), pages 161-178.
  7. A. Smith, Jeffrey & E. Todd, Petra, 2005. "Does matching overcome LaLonde's critique of nonexperimental estimators?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 305-353.
  8. Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 1995. "Selection corrections for panel data models under conditional mean independence assumptions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 115-132, July.
  9. 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.
  10. Pender, John L. & Benin, Samuel, 2001. "Impacts Of Land Resdistribution On Land Management And Productivity In The Ethiopian Highlands," 2001 Annual meeting, August 5-8, Chicago, IL 20701, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  11. Mas-Colell, Andreu & Whinston, Michael D. & Green, Jerry R., 1995. "Microeconomic Theory," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195102680.
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