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Creating Abundance

Author

Listed:
  • Olmstead,Alan L.
  • Rhode,Paul W.

Abstract

This book demonstrates that American agricultural development was far more dynamic than generally portrayed. In the two centuries before World War II, a stream of biological innovations revolutionized the crop and livestock sectors, increasing both land and labor productivity. Biological innovations were essential for the movement of agriculture onto new lands with more extreme climates, for maintaining production in the face of evolving threats from pests, and for the creation of the modern livestock sector. These innovations established the foundation for the subsequent Green and Genetic Revolutions. The book challenges the misconceptions that, before the advent of hybrid corn, American farmers single-mindedly invested in labor-saving mechanical technologies and that biological technologies were static.

Suggested Citation

  • Olmstead,Alan L. & Rhode,Paul W., 2008. "Creating Abundance," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521673877.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:cbooks:9780521673877
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    Cited by:

    1. Mark Brown & Shon M. Ferguson & Crina Viju, 2017. "Agricultural Trade Reform, Reallocation and Technical Change: Evidence from the Canadian Prairies," NBER Chapters,in: Understanding Productivity Growth in Agriculture National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Julian M. Alston & Philip G. Pardey, 2014. "Agriculture in the Global Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 28(1), pages 121-146, Winter.
    3. Markus Lampe & Paul Sharp, 2015. "Just add milk: a productivity analysis of the revolutionary changes in nineteenth-century Danish dairying," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 68(4), pages 1132-1153, November.
    4. Olmstead, Alan L. & Rhode, Paul W., 2008. "Biological Innovation and Productivity Growth in the Antebellum Cotton Economy," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 68(04), pages 1123-1171, December.
    5. Price V. Fishback & Werner Troesken & Trevor Kollmann & Michael Haines & Paul W. Rhode & Melissa Thomasson, 2011. "Information and the Impact of Climate and Weather on Mortality Rates During the Great Depression," NBER Chapters,in: The Economics of Climate Change: Adaptations Past and Present, pages 131-167 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Gema Aparicio & Vicente Pinilla, 2015. "The dynamics of international trade in cereals, 1900-1938," Documentos de Trabajo de la Sociedad Española de Historia Agraria 1504, Sociedad Española de Historia Agraria.
    7. Miguel Martín-Retortillo & Vicente Pinilla, 2013. "Patterns and causes of growth of European agricultural production, 1950-2005," Documentos de Trabajo (DT-AEHE) 1302, Asociacion Espa–ola de Historia Economica.
    8. Richard Hornbeck, 2012. "Nature versus Nurture: The Environment's Persistent Influence through the Modernization of American Agriculture," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(3), pages 245-249, May.
    9. Danny McGowan & Chrysovalantis Vasilakis, 2015. "Reap What You Sow: Agricultural Productivity, Structural Change and Urbanization," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2015019, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    10. Muscio, Alessandro & Nardone, Gianluca, 2012. "The determinants of university–industry collaboration in food science in Italy," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 710-718.
    11. Miguel Martín-Retorillo & Vincente Pinilla, 2012. "Why did agricultural labour productivity not converge in Europe from 1950 to 2005?," Working Papers 0025, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    12. Gary D. Libecap & Richard H. Steckel, 2011. "Climate Change: Adaptations in Historical Perspective," NBER Chapters,in: The Economics of Climate Change: Adaptations Past and Present, pages 1-22 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Julian M. Alston & William J. Martin & Philip G. Pardey, 2014. "Influences of Agricultural Technology on the Size and Importance of Food Price Variability," NBER Chapters,in: The Economics of Food Price Volatility, pages 13-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Richard H. Steckel & William J. White, 2012. "Engines of Growth: Farm Tractors and Twentieth-Century U.S. Economic Welfare," NBER Working Papers 17879, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Richard C. Sutch, 2008. "Henry Agard Wallace, the Iowa Corn Yield Tests, and the Adoption of Hybrid Corn," NBER Working Papers 14141, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Steven Nafziger, 2013. "Russian Peasants and Politicians: The Political Economy of Local Agricultural Support in Nizhnii Novgorod Province, 1864-1914," Department of Economics Working Papers 2013-15, Department of Economics, Williams College.
    17. Petra Moser & Joerg Ohmstedt & Paul W. Rhode, 2015. "Patent Citations and the Size of the Inventive Step - Evidence from Hybrid Corn," NBER Working Papers 21443, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Taylor, Rebecca & Zilberman, David, 2015. "The Diffusion of Process Innovation: The Case of Drip Irrigation in California," 2015 AAEA & WAEA Joint Annual Meeting, July 26-28, San Francisco, California 205320, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association;Western Agricultural Economics Association.
    19. Alston, Julian M. & Pardey, Philip G. & Ruttan, Vernon W., 2008. "Research Lags Revisited: Concepts and Evidence from U.S. Agriculture," Staff Papers 50091, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
    20. Wang, Sun Ling & Heisey, Paul & Schimmelpfennig, David & Ball, Eldon, 2015. "Agricultural Productivity Growth in the United States: Measurement, Trends, and Drivers," Economic Research Report 207954, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
    21. Meissner, Christopher M., 2014. "Growth from Globalization? A View from the Very Long Run," Handbook of Economic Growth,in: Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 8, pages 1033-1069 Elsevier.
    22. Alan L. Olmstead & Paul W. Rhode, 2010. "Productivity Growth and the Regional Dynamics of Antebellum Southern Development," NBER Working Papers 16494, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    23. Richard Sutch, 2010. "The Impact of the 1936 Corn-Belt Drought on American Farmers’ Adoption of Hybrid Corn," Working Papers 201002, University of California at Riverside, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2010.

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