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Agricultural Productivity and Structural Transformation. Evidence from Brazil

  • Paula Bustos
  • Bruno Caprettini
  • Jacopo Ponticelli

We study the effects of the adoption of new agricultural technologies on structural transformation. To guide empirical work, we present a simple model where the effect of agricultural productivity on industrial development depends on the factor bias of technical change. We test the predictions of the model by studying the introduction of genetically engineered soybean seeds in Brazil, which had heterogeneous effects on agricultural productivity across areas with different soil and weather characteristics. We find that technical change in soy production was strongly labor saving and lead to industrial growth, as predicted by the model.

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Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 736.

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Date of creation: Jun 2015
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:736
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  1. Daron Acemoglu & Veronica Guerrieri, 2006. "Capital Deepening and Non-Balanced Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 12475, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  10. Nathan Nunn & Nancy Qian, 2011. "The Potato's Contribution to Population and Urbanization: Evidence From A Historical Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(2), pages 593-650.
  11. Francesco Caselli & Wilbur John Coleman II, 2001. "The U.S. Structural Transformation and Regional Convergence: A Reinterpretation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(3), pages 584-616, June.
  12. Matsuyama, Kiminori, 1992. "Agricultural productivity, comparative advantage, and economic growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 317-334, December.
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  14. Fajgelbaum, Pablo & Grossman, Gene M. & Helpman, Elhanan, 2011. "Income distribution, product quality, and international trade," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5843, The World Bank.
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  16. Fernandez-Cornejo, Jorge & Hendricks, Chad & Mishra, Ashok K., 2005. "Technology Adoption and Off-Farm Household Income: The Case of Herbicide-Tolerant Soybeans," Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Southern Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 37(03), December.
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