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An Analysis of Ill-Posed Production Problems Using Maximum Entropy

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  • Quirino Paris
  • Richard E. Howitt

Abstract

Production economics problems are often ill-posed. This means that the number of parameters to be estimated is greater than the number of observations. In this article we show how to recover flexible cost functions from very limited data sets using a maximum entropy approach. We also argue that there exists a continuum of analysis between mathematical programming and traditional econometric techniques which is based solely upon the available information. The limiting case of a multi-output cost function recovered using only a single observation of a farmer's allocation decisions can be easily extended to handle more than one observation. Copyright 1998, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Quirino Paris & Richard E. Howitt, 1998. "An Analysis of Ill-Posed Production Problems Using Maximum Entropy," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(1), pages 124-138.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:ajagec:v:80:y:1998:i:1:p:124-138
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.2307/3180275
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Christopher J. O'Donnell, 2010. "Measuring and decomposing agricultural productivity and profitability change ," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 54(4), pages 527-560, October.
    2. C.J. O'Donnell, 2008. "An aggregate quantity-price framework for measuring and Decomposing productivity and profitability change," CEPA Working Papers Series WP072008, School of Economics, University of Queensland, Australia.
    3. Catherine J. Morrison Paul & Richard Nehring & David Banker, 2004. "Productivity, Economies, and Efficiency in U.S. Agriculture: A Look at Contracts," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1308-1314.
    4. Caves, Douglas W & Christensen, Laurits R & Diewert, W Erwin, 1982. "The Economic Theory of Index Numbers and the Measurement of Input, Output, and Productivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1393-1414, November.
    5. V. Eldon Ball & Charles Hallahan & Richard Nehring, 2004. "Convergence of Productivity: An Analysis of the Catch-up Hypothesis within a Panel of States," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1315-1321.
    6. Paul, Catherine J. Morrison & Nehring, Richard, 2005. "Product diversification, production systems, and economic performance in U.S. agricultural production," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 126(2), pages 525-548, June.
    7. C.J. O'Donnell, 2010. "DPIN Version 1.0: A Program for Decomposing Productivity Index Numbers," CEPA Working Papers Series WP012010, School of Economics, University of Queensland, Australia.
    8. Capalbo, Susan Marie, 1988. "Measuring The Components Of Aggregate Productivity Growth In U.S. Agriculture," Western Journal of Agricultural Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 13(01), July.
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