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Technology capital: the price of admission to the growth club

  • Robert Evenson
  • Keith Fuglie

    ()

We assess long-run patterns of global agricultural productivity growth in developing countries between 1970 and 2005 and examine the relationship between investments in technology capital and productivity. To measure agricultural total factor productivity (TFP) we employ a Solow-type growth accounting method to decompose output growth into input and TFP growth. For technology capital we construct two indexes reflecting national capacities in agricultural research and education-extension for 87 developing countries. We then correlate technology capital levels with long-term growth rates in agricultural TFP. Our findings show that average agricultural TFP growth in developing countries accelerated in the 1980s and 1990s but fell marginally in the early 2000s. TFP performance was very uneven across countries and regions. TFP growth rates by individual countries were significantly influenced by their levels of technology capital. Marginal improvements to research capacity, given a minimal level of extension and schooling existed, were associated with faster TFP growth. However, marginal increases in extension-schooling without commiserate improvements in research capacity did not improve productivity performance.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11123-009-0149-3
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Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Productivity Analysis.

Volume (Year): 33 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (June)
Pages: 173-190

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Handle: RePEc:kap:jproda:v:33:y:2010:i:3:p:173-190
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  1. Evenson, Robert E. & Pray, Carl E. & Rosegrant, Mark W., 1999. "Agricultural research and productivity growth in India:," Research reports 109, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  2. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 2000. "International Data on Educational Attainment Updates and Implications," NBER Working Papers 7911, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  4. Peterson, Willis L., 1987. "International Land Quality Indexes," Staff Papers 13877, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
  5. Wiebe, Keith D. & Soule, Meredith J. & Narrod, Clare A. & Breneman, Vincent E., 2000. "Resource Quality And Agricultural Productivity: A Multi-Country Comparison," 2000 Annual meeting, July 30-August 2, Tampa, FL 21723, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  6. Fuglie, Keith O., 2003. "Productivity Growth in Indonesian Agriculture, 1961-2000," 2003 Conference (47th), February 12-14, 2003, Fremantle, Australia 57868, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
  7. Barbara J. Craig & Philip G. Pardey & Johannes Roseboom, 1997. "International Productivity Patterns: Accounting for Input Quality, Infrastructure, and Research," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(4), pages 1064-1076.
  8. V. Eldon Ball & Jean-Christophe Bureau & Richard Nehring & Agapi Somwaru, 1997. "Agricultural Productivity Revisited," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 79(4), pages 1045-1063.
  9. Shenggen Fan & Peter Hazell & Sukhadeo Thorat, 2000. "Government Spending, Growth and Poverty in Rural India," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(4), pages 1038-1051.
  10. Fan, Shenggen & Zhang, Xiaobo, 2002. "Production and Productivity Growth in Chinese Agriculture: New National and Regional Measures," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 50(4), pages 819-38, July.
  11. Ludena, Carlos E. & Hertel, Thomas W. & Preckel, Paul V. & Foster, Kenneth A. & Nin Pratt, Alejandro, 2006. "Productivity Growth and Convergence in Crop, Ruminant and Non-Ruminant Production: Measurement and Forecasts," 2006 Annual Meeting, August 12-18, 2006, Queensland, Australia 25392, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  12. Evenson, Robert E., 2001. "Economic impacts of agricultural research and extension," Handbook of Agricultural Economics, in: B. L. Gardner & G. C. Rausser (ed.), Handbook of Agricultural Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 11, pages 573-628 Elsevier.
  13. Alston, Julian M. & Pardey, Philip G. & Taylor, Michael J., 2001. "Agricultural science policy," Food policy statements 32, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  14. Scott Rozelle & Johan F.M. Swinnen, 2004. "Success and Failure of Reform: Insights from the Transition of Agriculture," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(2), pages 404-456, June.
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