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Dual technological development in Botswana agriculture: A Stochastic input distance function approach

Irz, X. and Thirtle, C. (2004) Dual technological development in Botswana agriculture: A Stochastic input distance function approach. Journal of Agricultural Economics, 55 (3). pp. 455-478. ISSN 0021-857X

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To improve the welfare of the rural poor and keep them in the countryside, the government of Botswana has been spending 40% of the value of agricultural GDP on agricultural support services. But can investment make smallholder agriculture prosperous in such adverse conditions? This paper derives an answer by applying a two-output six-input stochastic translog distance function, with inefficiency effects and biased technical change to panel data for the 18 districts and the commercial agricultural sector, from 1979 to 1996 This model demonstrates that herds are the most important input, followed by draft power. land and seeds. Multilateral indices for technical change, technical efficiency and total factor productivity (TFP) show that the technology level of the commercial agricultural sector is more than six times that of traditional agriculture and that the gap has been increasing, due to technological regression in traditional agriculture and modest progress in commercial agriculture. Since the levels of efficiency are similar, the same patient is repeated by the TFP indices. This result highlights the policy dilemma of the trade-off between efficiency and equity objectives.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development
ID Code:8709

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