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Dual Technological Development in Botswana Agriculture: A Stochastic Input Distance Function Approach

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  • Xavier Irz
  • Colin Thirtle

Abstract

To improve the welfare of the rural poor and keep them in the countryside, the government of Botswana has been spending 40% of the value of agricultural GDP on agricultural support services. But can investment make smallholder agriculture prosperous in such adverse conditions? This paper derives an answer by applying a two‐output six‐input stochastic translog distance function, with inefficiency effects and biased technical change to panel data for the 18 districts and the commercial agricultural sector, from 1979 to 1996. This model demonstrates that herds are the most important input, followed by draft power, land and seeds. Multilateral indices for technical change, technical efficiency and total factor productivity (TFP) show that the technology level of the commercial agricultural sector is more than six times that of traditional agriculture and that the gap has been increasing, due to technological regression in traditional agriculture and modest progress in commercial agriculture. Since the levels of efficiency are similar, the same pattern is repeated by the TFP indices. This result highlights the policy dilemma of the trade‐off between efficiency and equity objectives.

Suggested Citation

  • Xavier Irz & Colin Thirtle, 2004. "Dual Technological Development in Botswana Agriculture: A Stochastic Input Distance Function Approach," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(3), pages 455-478, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jageco:v:55:y:2004:i:3:p:455-478
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1477-9552.2004.tb00110.x
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1477-9552.2004.tb00110.x
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    1. World Bank, 2002. "African Development Indicators 2002," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 13922, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Rahman, Sanzidur & Kazal, Mohammad Mizanul Haque, 2015. "Whether crop diversification is energy efficient: An empirical analysis from Bangladesh," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 745-754.
    2. A. Wondemu Kifle, 2016. "Working Paper 237 - Decomposing Sources of Productivity Change in Small-Scale Farming in Ethiopia," Working Paper Series 2332, African Development Bank.
    3. Mekonnen, Dawit K. & Dorfman, Jeffrey H., 2017. "Synergy and Learning Effects of Informal Labor-Sharing Arrangements," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 1-14.
    4. Gbemay Singbo, Alphonse & Larue, Bruno, 2014. "Scale Economies and Technical Efficiency of Quebec Dairy Farms," Working Papers 182482, University of Laval, Center for Research on the Economics of the Environment, Agri-food, Transports and Energy (CREATE).
    5. Maria Martinez Cillero & Fiona Thorne & Michael Wallace & James Breen & Thia Hennessy, 2018. "The Effects of Direct Payments on Technical Efficiency of Irish Beef Farms: A Stochastic Frontier Analysis," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(3), pages 669-687, September.
    6. Nitin Kumar & Rudra Sensarma, 2017. "Efficiency of Microfinance Institutions in India: A Stochastic Distance Function Approach," Journal of Emerging Market Finance, Institute for Financial Management and Research, vol. 16(2), pages 151-168, August.
    7. Latruffe, Laure & Bravo-Ureta, Boris E. & Moreira, Victor H. & Desjeux, Yann & Dupraz, Pierre, 2011. "Productivity and Subsidies in European Union Countries: An Analysis for Dairy Farms Using Input Distance Frontiers," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114396, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Temoso, Omphile & Villano, Renato & Hadley, David, 2016. "Evaluating the productivity gap between commercial and traditional beef production systems in Botswana," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 149(C), pages 30-39.
    9. Sanzidur Rahman, 2010. "Women’s Labour Contribution to Productivity and Efficiency in Agriculture: Empirical Evidence From Bangladesh," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(2), pages 318-342, June.
    10. Takeshima, Hiroyuki & Hatzenbuehler, Patrick L. & Edeh, Hyacinth, 2018. "Effects of agricultural mechanization on economies of scope in crop production in Nigeria," NSSP working papers 53, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    11. Alphonse G. Singbo & Bruno Larue, 2014. "Scale Economies and Technical Efficiency of Quebec Dairy Farms," Cahiers de recherche CREATE 2014-7, CREATE.
    12. Nguyen, Huy, 2014. "Crop diversification, economic performance and household’s behaviours Evidence from Vietnam," MPRA Paper 59168, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 05 Oct 2014.
    13. Cillero, Maria Martinez & Breen, James & Thorne, Fiona & Wallace, Michael, 2017. "The effect of the implementation of the 2003 Mid-Term Review of the CAP on technical efficiency of beef production. A comparative analysis," 91st Annual Conference, April 24-26, 2017, Royal Dublin Society, Dublin, Ireland 258617, Agricultural Economics Society.
    14. Sanzidur Rahman & Basanta Kumar Barmon, 2018. "Total Factor Energy Productivity and Efficiency Changes of the Gher (Prawn-Carp-Rice) Farming System in Bangladesh: A Stochastic Input Distance Function Approach," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(12), pages 1-17, December.
    15. Mamardashvili, Phatima & Bokusheva, Raushan & Schmid, Dierk, 2014. "Heterogeneous Farm Output and Technical Efficiency Estimates," German Journal of Agricultural Economics, Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Department for Agricultural Economics, vol. 63(01), pages 1-15, March.
    16. Rahman, Sanzidur & Barmon, Basanta K., 2012. "Energy productivity and efficiency of the ‘gher’ (prawn-fish-rice) farming system in Bangladesh," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 293-300.
    17. Krishna Bahadur KC & Iftekharul Haque & Alexander F. Legwegoh & Evan D. G. Fraser, 2016. "Strategies to Reduce Food Loss in the Global South," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(7), pages 1-13, June.
    18. Bahta, Sirak & Malope, Patrick, 2014. "Measurement of competitiveness in smallholder livestock systems and emerging policy advocacy: An application to Botswana," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 49(P2), pages 408-417.
    19. Nguyen, Huy Quynh, 2017. "Analyzing the economies of crop diversification in rural Vietnam using an input distance function," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 153(C), pages 148-156.
    20. Mbudzya, Joseph Jabu, 2017. "Effect Of Agricultural Land Rental Market Participation On Agricultural Income Of Small Scale Farmers In Kwale County, Kenya," Research Theses 276436, Collaborative Masters Program in Agricultural and Applied Economics.
    21. Mamardashvili, Phatima & Bokusheva, Raushan & Schmid, Dierk, 2014. "Heterogeneous Farm Output and Technical Efficiency Estimates," Journal of International Agricultural Trade and Development, Journal of International Agricultural Trade and Development, vol. 63(1).
    22. Takeshima, Hiroyuki & Hatzenbuehler, Patrick L. & Edeh, Hyacinth O., 2020. "Effects of agricultural mechanization on economies of scope in crop production in Nigeria," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 177(C).
    23. Temoso, Omphile & Villano, Renato & Hadley, David, 2015. "Agricultural productivity, efficiency and growth in a semi-arid country: a case study of Botswana," African Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, African Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 10(3), pages 1-15, September.
    24. Bahta, Sirak & Baker, Derek, 2015. "Determinants of Profit Efficiency Among Smallholder Beef Producers in Botswana," International Food and Agribusiness Management Review, International Food and Agribusiness Management Association, vol. 18(3), pages 1-24, September.
    25. Saito, Yoko & Saito, Hisamitsu & Kondo, Takumi & Osanami, Fumio, 2009. "Quality-oriented technical change in Japanese wheat breeding," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(8), pages 1365-1375, October.

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