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The impact of human capital on firm-level input use: Argentine agriculture

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  • Marcos Gallacher

Abstract

This paper attempts to understand the linkages between human capital and input choice in agricultural firms. The hypothesis to be tested is that better educated managers choose different input combinations than managers with a lower educational level. In particular, the hypothesis is that the ratio between non-land and land input increases as education increases. Non-land inputs include fertilizers, machinery services, herbicides, animal stocks and others. An increase in the non-land/land input ratio results in increased output (and costs) per unit of land. Given the fixity of land at the aggregate level, the non-land/land input ratio is an important determinant of total sector output. Este trabajo tiene como objetivo entender los vínculos que existen entre capital humano y uso de insumos en empresas agropecuarias. La hipótesis a ser sometida a prueba es que los productores con mayor nivel de educación eligen combinaciones de insumos distintas que las elegidas por aquellos que cuentan con un nivel de educación mas bajo. En particular, que el ratio entre insumos de capital y el insumo tierra aumenta a medida que la educación de los productores aumenta. Los insumos de capital incluyen fertilizantes, servicios de maquinaria, herbicidas, capital biológico (animales) y otros. Un aumento en el ratio entre insumos de capital por unidad de recurso tierra resulta en mayor producto (y costos) por unidad de tierra. Dado que a nivel agregado la tierra es un insumo fijo, el ratio entre capital y tierra es un importante determinante de la producción total lograda. El nivel educativo de los productores, al impactar sobre la intensidad de uso de la tierra, resulta entonces un importante determinante del nivel total de producción logrado.

Suggested Citation

  • Marcos Gallacher, 2008. "The impact of human capital on firm-level input use: Argentine agriculture," CEMA Working Papers: Serie Documentos de Trabajo. 380, Universidad del CEMA.
  • Handle: RePEc:cem:doctra:380
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    File URL: http://www.ucema.edu.ar/publicaciones/download/documentos/380.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Huffman, Wallace E, 1980. "Farm and Off-Farm Work Decisions: The Role of Human Capital," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, pages 14-23.
    2. Anderson, Jock R. & Feder, Gershon, 2007. "Agricultural Extension," Handbook of Agricultural Economics, Elsevier.
    3. Welch, F, 1970. "Education in Production," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(1), pages 35-59, Jan.-Feb..
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    Cited by:

    1. Lema, Daniel & Casellas, Karina, 2009. "Retornos a la educación en zonas rurales," Nülan. Deposited Documents 1098, Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Sociales, Centro de Documentación.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    human capital; agriculture; input use;

    JEL classification:

    • Q12 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Micro Analysis of Farm Firms, Farm Households, and Farm Input Markets
    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity

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