Essays on agricultural development in Tanzania

Boulay, Basile (2018) Essays on agricultural development in Tanzania. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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This thesis is made of three self-contained essays on the agricultural sector of Tanzania, each of them focusing on an aspect of direct policy relevance. In the first essay, I study whether an inverse relationship exists between cultivated area and physical productivity (yield per acre) for a set of important annual crops. I define size as the area of a plot on which a crop is grown, thus introducing a more disaggregated level of analysis than the common plot or crop levels of analysis. I control for the existing hypotheses in the literature potentially explaining this inverse relationship and propose to control for two new hypotheses which are only testable at this level of analysis.

In the second essay, I look at output marketing for a set of important crops. I stress the links between the market failure theoretical narrative and empirical applications, and argue this has resulted in less attention being paid to the reasons why farmers may enter -or not- the market for a particular crop. I estimate participation and supply equations for a set of important crops and show that the rationale for entry differs across crops. This calls for a more flexible conception of `the market'.

The first two essays use the Tanzanian National Panel Surveys to conduct econometric analysis. The third essay is based on primary data collected in 2016 in order to carry analysis of the Bambara nut, an underutilised crop. Because underutilised crops hardly feature in national datasets, primary data is needed to understand their socio-economic dynamics. Focusing on the Mtwara region of Tanzania, I study the importance of Bambara for local livelihoods using a mixed-methods study based on both quantitative and qualitative data. This study contributes to the growing interest on underutilised crops and their importance in designing more sustainable agricultural strategies.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Morrissey, Oliver
Bridges, Sarah
Keywords: Cultivated area; Physical productivity; Output marketing; Crops; Bambara nut; Underutilised crops
Subjects: H Social sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Social Sciences, Law and Education > School of Economics
Item ID: 52094
Depositing User: Boulay, Basile
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2018 04:40
Last Modified: 07 May 2020 18:45

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