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Pathways to Improved Profitability and Sustainability of Cotton Cultivation at Farm Level in Africa: an Approach to Addressing Critical Knowledge Gaps

  • Kelly, Valerie A.
  • Boughton, Duncan
  • Magen, Benjamin B.

In 2009, the World Bank published a comparative study of cotton sector reforms, based on detailed case studies carried out during 2007/08 in nine of Africa’s main cotton producing countries. The purpose of the study was to draw practical insights from the diversity of experiences in institutional reforms of cotton sectors and to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of the different types of sectors operating in Africa, the likely effects of specific types of policy change, and the possible ways forward. This paper develops a concept note for additional research that would address the perceived weaknesses of the earlier work. The underlying hypothesis of the proposed study is that technology research, farmer training, and policy and institutional reforms to improve cotton sector productivity and incomes tend to be designed for typical or model farmers. This often fails to take into account the diversity among cotton farmers and what this diversity implies for cotton sector development in general and the ability of the cotton sector to contribute to poverty reduction in particular. The proposed research is expected to contribute to aggregate growth in cotton productivity and incomes through the design of more targeted support interventions based on a better understanding of the strategies, capacities, and constraints of the different types of cotton farmers.

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Paper provided by Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics in its series Food Security International Development Working Papers with number 101163.

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Date of creation: Feb 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ags:midiwp:101163
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