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Agriculture for development: New paradigm and options for success

  • de Janvry, Alain
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    In the classical paradigm of development economics that prevailed in the 1960s, agricultural growth was held to be the key pillar for industrial growth, itself seen to be synonymous with economic development. The paradigm was anchored in telling success stories, from the long history of the “Western Experience” to the then-recent “Asian miracles”. And it was supported by rigorous modeling exercises. But, in spite of success stories, implementation of this paradigm was running into increasing difficulty in the 1970s and early 1980s as policy favored import substitution industrialization with strong anti-agriculture price policy biases. Integrated rural development strategies, designed to meet the broadened development objectives introduced in the 1970s that included poverty and inequality reduction, were also proving difficult to implement successfully, in part because of the low profitability of agriculture and in part because of excessively complex state-led approaches. With the debt crisis of 1982, and the subsequent implementation of stabilization and adjustment policies under the Washington Consensus, use of agriculture as an instrument for development was disregarded in favor of other approaches to development such as open economy industrialization to accelerate growth and cash transfers or workfare programs to reduce poverty. With a few notable exceptions such as China and Vietnam where smallholder-based agricultural growth was pursued vigorously, the economic, social, and environmental costs of this neglect of agriculture have been huge.

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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/53202
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    Paper provided by International Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China with number 53202.

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    Date of creation: 2009
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    Handle: RePEc:ags:iaae09:53202
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.iaae-agecon.org/
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    1. Brian D. Wright, 2012. "International Grain Reserves And Other Instruments to Address Volatility in Grain Markets," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 27(2), pages 222-260, August.
    2. Adelman, Irma, 1984. "Beyond export-led growth," CUDARE Working Paper Series 309, University of California at Berkeley, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Policy.
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    5. Zvi Griliches, 1958. "Research Costs and Social Returns: Hybrid Corn and Related Innovations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 419.
    6. Morrisson, Christian & Thorbecke, Erik, 1990. "The concept of the agricultural surplus," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 18(8), pages 1081-1095, August.
    7. Derek Byerlee & Alain de Janvry & Elisabeth Sadoulet, 2009. "Agriculture for Development: Toward a New Paradigm," Annual Review of Resource Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 15-31, 09.
    8. Ravallion, Martin & Chen, Shaohua & Sangraula, Prem, 2007. "New evidence on the urbanization of global poverty," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4199, The World Bank.
    9. Hans P. Binswanger, 2007. "Empowering rural people for their own development," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 37(s1), pages 13-27, December.
    10. Stefan Dercon, 2009. "Rural Poverty: Old Challenges in New Contexts," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 24(1), pages 1-28, April.
    11. Philip Abbott, 2009. "Development Dimensions of High Food Prices," OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Papers 18, OECD Publishing.
    12. Adelman, Irma, 1984. "Beyond export-led growth," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 12(9), pages 937-949, September.
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