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Productive and Predatory Public Policies: Research Expenditures and Producer Subsidies in Agriculture

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  • Harry de Gorter
  • David J. Nielson
  • Gordon C. Rausser

Abstract

Governments are postulated to maximize a political preference function in choosing two policy instruments: research expenditures (a productive policy) that improve social welfare and production subsidies (a predatory policy) that incur deadweight losses. Each policy affects the distribution of income between producers and consumers. Governments determine the optimal mix of policies, taking into account interaction effects between research and subsidy expenditures. In addition to providing an explanation for underinvestment in research, the paper determines conditions under which research and subsidy policies are complementary. Such conditions are shown to characterize U.S. agriculture. Underinvestment in research is therefore less severe than in some other countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Harry de Gorter & David J. Nielson & Gordon C. Rausser, 1992. "Productive and Predatory Public Policies: Research Expenditures and Producer Subsidies in Agriculture," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 74(1), pages 27-37.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:ajagec:v:74:y:1992:i:1:p:27-37.
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    1. Richard E. Just & Wen S. Chern, 1980. "Tomatoes, Technology, and Oligopsony," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 11(2), pages 584-602, Autumn.
    2. Karp, Larry S & Perloff, Jeffrey M, 1989. "Estimating Market Structure and Tax Incidence: The Japanese Television Market," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(3), pages 225-239, March.
    3. Lau, Lawrence J., 1982. "On identifying the degree of competitiveness from industry price and output data," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 10(1-2), pages 93-99.
    4. Karp, Larry S & Perloff, Jeffrey M, 1989. "Dynamic Oligopoly in the Rice Export Market," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(3), pages 462-470, August.
    5. Bresnahan, Timothy F., 1982. "The oligopoly solution concept is identified," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 10(1-2), pages 87-92.
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    Cited by:

    1. Kym Anderson & Gordon Rausser & Johan Swinnen, 2013. "Political Economy of Public Policies: Insights from Distortions to Agricultural and Food Markets," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(2), pages 423-477, June.
    2. Barrett, Christopher B., 1999. "The microeconomics of the developmental paradox: on the political economy of food price policy," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 20(2), pages 159-172, March.
    3. repec:sek:jijoes:v:6:y:2017:i:1:p:18-32 is not listed on IDEAS

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