CLTS Working Papers, Centre for Land Tenure Studies, Norwegian University of Life Sciences
Can area measurement error explain the inverse farm size productivity relationship?
() and Monica Fisher
Abstract: The existence of an inverse relationship (IR) between farm
size and productivity in tropical agriculture remains a debated issue with
policy relevance. Poor agricultural statistical data, including data on
farm sizes and farm plot sizes that typically are self-reported by farmers,
can lead to biased results and wrong policy conclusions.
combines self-reported and GPS-measured farm plot and farm sizes to assess
how measurement error affects the IR using three rounds of farm plot and
household data from Malawi. The results show that measurement error covers
up more than 60% of the IR for the total sample but leads to an upward bias
in the IR on farms less than one ha. Land and labor market imperfections in
combination with food self-sufficiency motives appear to explain most of
the IR and lead to a strong IR on farms below one ha.
Keywords: Inverse farm size – productivity relationship; Measurement error; Land and labor market imperfections; Land quality; Malawi.; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: J43; O13; Q12; (follow links to similar papers)
43 pages, September 20, 2013
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