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Agricultural Technology and Structural Change

Author

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  • Markus Eberhardt
  • Dietrich Vollrath

Abstract

Using data for 128 countries we document low (high) elasticities of agricultural output with respect to labor in economies within temperate (tropical/highland) climate zones. Adopting a standard model of structural change we show that this technology heterogeneity determines the speed of structural transformation following changes in agricultural productivity and population size. Calibration exercises document shifts in sectoral labor allocation and living standards 2–3 times larger in temperate than in otherwise identical equatorial/highland regions for a given productivity shock. Eliminating technology heterogeneity can account for up to one-fifth of the observed differences in aggregate income per capita across countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Markus Eberhardt & Dietrich Vollrath, 2014. "Agricultural Technology and Structural Change," CSAE Working Paper Series 2014-21, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  • Handle: RePEc:csa:wpaper:2014-21
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    File URL: http://www.csae.ox.ac.uk/materials/papers/csae-wps-2014-21.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Djahini, Edém & Ayassou, Kokou, 2016. "Quel niveau de transformation économique pour réduire les inégalités de revenu en Afrique ?
      [What level of economic transformation for income inequality alleviation in Africa?]
      ," MPRA Paper 74944, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    agricultural development; technology heterogeneity; agro-climatic environment; structural change;

    JEL classification:

    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models

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