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Individual Farming as a Labour Sink: Evidence from Poland and Russia


  • Zvi Lerman

    (Department of Agricultural Economics and Management, The Hebrew University, Rehovot, Israel)

  • Pepijn Schreinemachers

    () (Center for Development Research (ZEF), ZEF-Bonn, University of Bonn, Walter-Flex-Str. 3, D-53113, Bonn, Germany.)


In Poland and Russia, which provide two widely different examples of transition countries, small-scale individual farms employ more labour per hectare of land than large-scale corporate farms without suffering from lower productivity. Individual farming is a labour sink for the rural population, and land policies promoting individualization of agriculture in transition countries can alleviate the social consequences of rural unemployment without sacrificing agricultural productivity. Pending long-term development of nonagricultural employment opportunities, the average transition country should encourage the rural population to remain in agriculture by emphasising individual rather than corporate farming. Comparative Economic Studies (2005) 47, 675–695. doi:10.1057/palgrave.ces.8100068

Suggested Citation

  • Zvi Lerman & Pepijn Schreinemachers, 2005. "Individual Farming as a Labour Sink: Evidence from Poland and Russia," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 47(4), pages 675-695, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:compes:v:47:y:2005:i:4:p:675-695

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lerman, Zvi*Csaki, Csaba*Feder, Gershon, 2002. "Land policies and evolving farm structures in transition countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2794, The World Bank.
    2. Lerman, Zvi, 1998. "Does Land Reform Matter? Some Experiences from the Former Soviet Union," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 25(3), pages 307-330.
    3. Zvi Lerman, 2000. "From Common Heritage to Divergence: Why the Transition Countries are Drifting Apart by Measures of Agricultural Performance," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1140-1148.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jan Fałkowski & Maciej Jakubowski & Paweł Strawiński, 2014. "Returns from income strategies in rural Poland," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 22(1), pages 139-178, January.
    2. Pascal Grouiez, 2014. "Farming strategies regarding "social responsibility" in the Russian agricultural sector," Post-Print halshs-01064450, HAL.
    3. Zvi Lerman, 2008. "Agricultural recovery in the former Soviet Union: an overview of 15 years of land reform and farm restructuring," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(4), pages 391-412.
    4. Czyżewski, Andrzej & Grochowska, Reanata & Józwiak, Wojciech & Kosior, Katarzyna & Kułyk, Piotr & Mirkowska, Zofia, 2014. "Development trends in agricultural sector and policies − challenges for the future (Synthesis)," Multiannual Program Reports 206066, Institute of Agricultural and Food Economics - National Research Institute (IAFE-NRI).
    5. Zvi Lerman, 2017. "Should agricultural employment in transition economies be encouraged?," IZA World of Labor, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), pages 328-328, January.
    6. Czyżewski, Bazyli, 2016. "Political Rents of European Farmers in the Sustainable Development Paradigm. International, national and regional perspective," MPRA Paper 74253, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Pavel Ciaian & Johan F.M. Swinnen, 2007. "Credit Market Imperfections and the Distribution of Policy Rents: The Common Agricultural Policy in the New EU Member States," LICOS Discussion Papers 18307, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.

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