The Political Economy of Policies for Smallholder Agriculture
Summary As the experience of the 20th century has shown, implementing policies that increase agricultural productivity among smallholders is a particularly promising strategy to achieve pro-poor growth. However, history also reveals major political challenges to adopting this strategy. The paper compares the experience of Asian countries that were able to launch a smallholder-based Green Revolution with the experience of African countries that are still struggling with this goal. It then reviews the political economy literature to identify the factors that account for these divergent experiences. Finally, the paper develops a conceptual framework to guide empirical research to close the knowledge gaps identified by the review.
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