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Is small better? A comparison of the effect of large and small dams on cropland productivity in South Africa

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  • Elodie Blanc
  • Eric Strobl

Abstract

This study estimates and compares the effects of small and large irrigation dams on cropland productivity in South Africa. To this end, a panel data set of South African river basins is constructed. The econometric analysis reveals that although large dams increase cropland productivity downstream, they have a negative effect on cropland within the vicinity. However, their existence can enhance the relatively small positive impact of local small dams. Although a cost-benefit analysis of irrigation benefits shows that small dams may be more viable than large ones, large dams can play a potentially important role within a system of both types of dams.
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  • Elodie Blanc & Eric Strobl, 2013. "Is small better? A comparison of the effect of large and small dams on cropland productivity in South Africa," Working Papers 2013-10, Department of Research, Ipag Business School.
  • Handle: RePEc:ipg:wpaper:2013-10
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    3. Anwar Hussain & Khalil Ur Rahman & Muhammad Shahid & Sajjad Haider & Quoc Bao Pham & Nguyen Thi Thuy Linh & Saad Shauket Sammen, 2022. "Investigating feasible sites for multi-purpose small dams in Swat District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, Pakistan: socioeconomic and environmental considerations," Environment, Development and Sustainability: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Theory and Practice of Sustainable Development, Springer, vol. 24(9), pages 10852-10875, September.
    4. repec:ipg:wpaper:2014-492 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Pinhati, Filipe Sampaio Casulari & Rodrigues, Lineu Neiva & Aires de Souza, Saulo, 2020. "Modelling the impact of on-farm reservoirs on dry season water availability in an agricultural catchment area of the Brazilian savannah," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 241(C).
    6. repec:ipg:wpaper:2014-478 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. repec:ipg:wpaper:2014-453 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Russ,Jason Daniel & Zaveri,Esha Dilip & Damania,Richard & Desbureaux,Sebastien Gael & Escurra,Jorge Jose & Rodella,Aude-Sophie, 2020. "Salt of the Earth : Quantifying the Impact of Water Salinity on Global Agricultural Productivity," Policy Research Working Paper Series 9144, The World Bank.
    9. repec:ipg:wpaper:2014-558 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Mettetal, Elizabeth, 2019. "Irrigation dams, water and infant mortality: Evidence from South Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 138(C), pages 17-40.
    11. Zaveri, Esha D. & Russ, Jason & Damania, Richard, 2017. "Drenched Fields and Parched Farms: Evidence along the Extensive and Intensive Margins," 2017 Annual Meeting, July 30-August 1, Chicago, Illinois 258409, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
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