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Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Essays On Fall Fertilizer Application, Mira Nurmakhanova Jan 2008

Essays On Fall Fertilizer Application, Mira Nurmakhanova

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Increased use of nitrogen fertilizer in agricultural production has contributed to increased food production but also contributed to elevated concentration levels of nitrates in groundwater and surface water. High concentration levels of nitrates in drinking water supplied from groundwater and surface water have become a public concern because of their risks to human health.;One way to reduce nitrogen losses is to develop and apply technologies that enable farmers to more accurately match the amount and timing of fertilizer application to crop growth needs. It is best to apply nitrogen as close as possible to when crop needs it most ...


Peasant Communities, The First Link Of The Commodity Chain Of Vicuña Fiber, Liliana L. Lay Lisung Jan 2008

Peasant Communities, The First Link Of The Commodity Chain Of Vicuña Fiber, Liliana L. Lay Lisung

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Vicuna fiber has a high value in the textile and fashion industry and is seen on the runways of the most selective and luxurious clothing designers in Europe. However, the vicuna fiber process and commodity chain are little known. This thesis presents the commodity chain of vicuna fiber and the positive and negative impacts that vicuna fiber commercialization generates in Peruvian peasant communities. The research, based on in-depth interviews and document analysis, studies the development of this buyer-driven chain, the social actors' roles, and the policies and legislation implemented to preserve vicuna species. In response to consumption demands, the marketing ...


Identity Preservation & Traceability: The State Of The Art - From A Grain Perspective (Status Of Agricultural Quality Systems / Traceability / Certification Systems), Gregory Scott Bennet Jan 2008

Identity Preservation & Traceability: The State Of The Art - From A Grain Perspective (Status Of Agricultural Quality Systems / Traceability / Certification Systems), Gregory Scott Bennet

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A descriptive paper on the state of identity preservation and traceability (IPT) as it relates domestically and internationally to food safety and economics. While not exhaustive, it is illustrative of trends. Identity preservation and traceability (IPT) are not new concepts; however, the growth of public and business interest and concerns regarding them has grown tremendously during the past decade due to many events, which has resulted in these concepts joining together within a single concept (with the same title). This paper, while attempting to be thorough, will highlight the major systems of IPT from a US business perspective. Before and ...


Alternative Approaches For Sharing Machinery, Labor, And Other Resources Among Small- And Medium-Sized Agricultural Producers, Greg Colson Jan 2008

Alternative Approaches For Sharing Machinery, Labor, And Other Resources Among Small- And Medium-Sized Agricultural Producers, Greg Colson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

As the U.S. agriculture industry continues to become increasingly concentrated, the viability of small- and medium-sized farms faced with diminishing profit margins per unit of output hinges in part on their ability to expand operations. In this study, the solution to this problem of taking advantage of economies of scale through farm-level resource sharing arrangements is considered. Through a two phase data collection procedure, Midwestern farmer groups engaged in resource sharing arrangements were identified and investigated through a case study approach. Evidence from the case studies suggest that sharing of equipment and labor can yield not only financial benefits ...


Three Essays On Agricultural Risk And Insurance, Li Zhang Jan 2008

Three Essays On Agricultural Risk And Insurance, Li Zhang

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The general theme of this dissertation is agricultural risk and insurance in the United States. Chapter 2 examines welfare effects of the 2002 farm bill programs and yield insurance as well as their impacts on acreage decision of a representative Iowa farmer. Instead of measuring welfare using expected utility to capture farmers' preferences over risky alternatives, we apply recent advances in decision theory and use prospect theory to measure welfare changes due to government programs. The results indicate that there is no policy distortion to farmers' acreage decisions and farmers' willingness to pay per dollar of program cost is greatest ...


A Simulation Model Evaluating Costs Of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus (Bvdv) For A Typical U.S. Cow-Calf Producer And Benefits Of Multiple Test And Cull Strategies, Kelsey James Wittenberger Jan 2007

A Simulation Model Evaluating Costs Of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus (Bvdv) For A Typical U.S. Cow-Calf Producer And Benefits Of Multiple Test And Cull Strategies, Kelsey James Wittenberger

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Increasingly, veterinarian organizations in the United States recommend the control and eradication of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus (BVDV). Cow-calf producers comprise 35% of U.S. cattle; however, research on the effects of BVDV in these herds is limited. To gain a better understanding of the pathology of BVDV in cow-calf producers, a stochastic simulation model was developed in C++ to measure epidemiological and financial outcomes. Additional simulations were run to evaluate changes in producer profit for several test and cull strategies. Introducing a PI animal decreased profit by an average of {dollar}13,971 over 10 years. When a second ...


Hacia El Ranchito: Mexican Immigrants, Farming And Sustainable Rural Livelihoods In Iowa, Hannah Kathryn Lewis Jan 2007

Hacia El Ranchito: Mexican Immigrants, Farming And Sustainable Rural Livelihoods In Iowa, Hannah Kathryn Lewis

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Latinos are the fastest growing ethnicity of farmers in Iowa and across the U.S., and 3.7 percent of Iowa's total population. This case study of four Mexican immigrant farmers explores why and how they farm in Iowa, and how agricultural institutions can support them. I conducted in-depth interviews and observation, using the Sustainable Rural Livelihoods framework in analysis. These farmers learned as children to tend livestock and butcher animals for home consumption. Each bought a small Iowa farmstead by assembling social, human and limited financial capital. They work off-farm fulltime, while on-farm producing meat, dairy, and/or ...


Evaluating The Conservation Security Program Utilizing The Perceptions And Economics Of Producer Participation: Implications For Land Stewardship In Iowa Agriculture, Denis Andrew Reich Jan 2007

Evaluating The Conservation Security Program Utilizing The Perceptions And Economics Of Producer Participation: Implications For Land Stewardship In Iowa Agriculture, Denis Andrew Reich

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Agriculture in the United States (US) has been the focus of a number of studies that address the link between on-farm agricultural practices and the degradation of natural resources. The mounting body of evidence that associates certain cropping and grazing practices with soil and waterway damage points to a need for federal agricultural policy to provide improved conservation incentives for agricultural producers. This study focuses on the first two years of the Conservation Security Program (CSP) in Iowa, a watershed based conservation program introduced with the 2002 Federal Farm Act. This new "green payment" program emphasizes "rewarding the best" stewards ...


Three Essays On Risk And Uncertainty In Agriculture, Nicholas David Paulson Jan 2007

Three Essays On Risk And Uncertainty In Agriculture, Nicholas David Paulson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The general theme of this dissertation is risk and uncertainty in agriculture, with each chapter addressing a specific topic related to agricultural risk and uncertainty. Chapter 2 examines the effects of production uncertainty on the types of contract structures used in specialty grain markets. A theoretical model of a contractual relationship between a monopsonistic processor and risk-neutral producers is presented. Two common contract structures, and their resulting effects on the sharing of production risk between buyer and seller, are compared. The spatial structure of yields and farm-level yield volatility are shown to have significant impacts on the processor's preferred ...


Trade-Off Between Cost Of Traceability Within A Small And Large Commercial Meat Plant And Economic Benefits Of Reducing The Number Of Recalls And Size Of Recalls, Bryan Lindley Jan 2007

Trade-Off Between Cost Of Traceability Within A Small And Large Commercial Meat Plant And Economic Benefits Of Reducing The Number Of Recalls And Size Of Recalls, Bryan Lindley

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Is the benefit of reducing the size or probability of a recall worth the cost of the system? Recalls have the potential to incur large cost associated with loss of product, negative publicity, and legal judgments. A model including the cost of traceability, probability that a recall occurs, costs associated with a recall, and severity of recall events is simulated using a random draw of probability and average size from a given distribution for both a 400 head per day and a 5,000 head per day beef plant. For a small plant, it was estimated that the reduction in ...


Three Essays On Contract Farming In China, Jianhua Zhu Jan 2007

Three Essays On Contract Farming In China, Jianhua Zhu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Contract farming in China has grown rapidly over the past 10 years. The first part of this dissertation examines the evolution of contract farming, and explores the incentives to engage in contract farming, preferred contract provisions, and contract performance from the perspective of both Chinese farmers and contracting firms. Firm and household perceptions of contracting are assessed using data obtained from village and firm level surveys. Farmers identify price stability and market access as the key advantages to contracts, while firms consider improved product quality as the primary incentive to use contracts.;In Part II, the survey data are used ...


Three Essays On Food Quality And Transaction Costs , Chengyan Yue Jan 2006

Three Essays On Food Quality And Transaction Costs , Chengyan Yue

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Product quality and product differentiation have become increasingly important to producers and policymakers for explaining consumer choice over food products. Consumers are often willing to pay large price premiums for products with preferred attributes. Heterogeneity in quality increases the diversity of goods for consumers and can improve welfare. However, variation in quality also leads to higher transaction costs for consumers, producers and policymakers because quality attributes are hard to identify precisely and vary when the state of the world changes. The first essay addresses the issue of food-quality attributes driven by protectionist policy that inhibits exchange between two countries. Technical ...


Micro-Level Econometric And Water-Quality Modeling: Simulation Of Nutrient Management Policy Effects , Christopher Sean Burkart Jan 2006

Micro-Level Econometric And Water-Quality Modeling: Simulation Of Nutrient Management Policy Effects , Christopher Sean Burkart

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Large surface areas of lakes and streams are impaired by nutrient contributions from agricultural nonpoint sources. This research develops a fully integrated economic and water quality model of an actual watershed to assess alternative nutrient abatement polities in terms of their economic efficiency and water quality effects. The policies examined include fertilizer taxes, application rate caps, uniform reductions, and a cap-and-trade fertilizer application right trading scheme. A micro-econometric field scale model of nutrient application is estimated using USDA Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS) data combined with prices and spatially detailed soil data. Estimation results are interfaced with the Soil and ...


Incentives And Contract Design: A Case Study Of Farmland Lease Contracts In Us Agriculture , Keita Fukunaga Jan 2006

Incentives And Contract Design: A Case Study Of Farmland Lease Contracts In Us Agriculture , Keita Fukunaga

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

In this dissertation, I have studied farmland lease contracts in U.S. agriculture. Using the data from the 1999 Agricultural Economics and Land Ownership Survey, I investigated the empirical determinants of contract design from the perspective of the principal-agent framework, which emphasizes the role of incentives. In the empirical analyses, I found evidence that incentives indeed play an important role in contract design. In chapter 2, I investigated the role of risk, transaction costs, and endogenous matching between the landlord and tenant in contract choice. I found that both risk and transaction costs affect contract choice. Furthermore, I found evidence ...


Poverty And Food Insecurity In Rural Iowa: An Examination Of Four Food Desert Counties , Ella Annette Bitto Jan 2005

Poverty And Food Insecurity In Rural Iowa: An Examination Of Four Food Desert Counties , Ella Annette Bitto

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Pockets of poverty are found throughout rural Iowa. Rural America is comprised of people with varying backgrounds who much make their livelihoods in a society that is increasingly a part of a global village. Living in Iowa, called by many the breadbasket of the world, does not necessarily mean that everyone will have equal access to food. In fact, over 46,600 Iowans between 2001--2003 experienced some form of poverty and 9.4 percent were defined as food insecure. This dissertation examines the economic structure of Iowa's counties to determine how agriculture and local business influence per capita income ...


Industrializing The Corn Belt: Iowa Farmers, Technology And The Midwestern Landscape, 1945-1972 , Joseph Leslie Anderson Jan 2005

Industrializing The Corn Belt: Iowa Farmers, Technology And The Midwestern Landscape, 1945-1972 , Joseph Leslie Anderson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

From 1945 to 1972 Iowa farmers remade their landscape in the image of an industrial model characterized by large-scale production, the substitution of capital for labor, strict cost accounting, specialization, and efficiency. Farm families were leaders in adopting new technology to solve their problems in the post World War II period, a contrast to the pre-war years when experts such as college educated professionals, journalists, and industry leaders advocated the application of industrial ideals to agriculture. Many farmers industrialized production because of a persistent postwar farm labor shortage and a cost-price squeeze in which the prices farmers paid for products ...


Investment In The Stock Market And Value-Added Agricultural Businesses As Portfolio Investment Alternatives To Farm Expansion, Joshua David Roe Jan 2005

Investment In The Stock Market And Value-Added Agricultural Businesses As Portfolio Investment Alternatives To Farm Expansion, Joshua David Roe

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

In the past decade, farmers have increasingly invested in value-added agriculture. Analysis of these investments compared to farm expansion by farmers was conducted from a portfolio optimization standpoint. Farms with similar investment patterns were identified by cluster analysis. When individual farm characteristics were analyzed to determine how these attributes affected investment choices, clear influences were found. In general, value-added agricultural investments were found to be an efficient investment alternative to farm expansion. Because of their larger risk, stock market investments play a smaller role in an optimized producer portfolio.


Three Essays On Rural Economic Growth , Georgeanne Michael Artz Jan 2005

Three Essays On Rural Economic Growth , Georgeanne Michael Artz

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation is a collection of three papers, each analyzing a particular issue related to economic growth in rural America. The first paper explores the problem of defining rural and the implications for measuring rural growth. It discusses the sample selection problem inherent in using classification methods based on population that change over time. Fast growing rural areas grow out of their rural status, so using the most recent definition of rural in an analysis of growth excludes the most successful places. The findings demonstrate that average economic performance of the areas remaining rural significantly understates the true performance of ...


Essays On International Trade, Endogenous Quality And Invasive Species Risk , Anh Thuy Tu Jan 2005

Essays On International Trade, Endogenous Quality And Invasive Species Risk , Anh Thuy Tu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation studies the relation between international trade and two issues that have become the active fields of economic research: the firms' quality decisions and the invasive species risk.;On the quality choice, the dissertation focuses on the impact of Voluntary Import Expansions (VIEs) on firms' quality decisions. I model a vertically differentiated international duopoly, with one firm in each country. A domestic and an exporting firm choose the quality of their goods and then compete in the domestic market. Both quantity and price conjectures are considered. The paper investigates the case where the government of the exporting country imposes ...


Three Essays On The Economics Of Innovation , Harun Bulut Jan 2005

Three Essays On The Economics Of Innovation , Harun Bulut

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

We have identified three specific problems in the economics of innovation and addressed each of them in separate essays in this thesis.;Essay 1 revisits the problem of inefficient diversification efforts of firms in a R&D race setting (Dasgupta and Maskin, 1987)1 by taking into account the fact that firms have the option of trade secrecy in addition to patents in protecting their inventions. This essay is theoretical in nature as we use a game-theoretic modeling of firms' project and IP choices in a R&D race. We find that the availability of multiple IPR protection instruments can move the paths chosen by firms engaged in a R&D race towards the social optimum.;Essay 2 refers to the adoption and diffusion stages of the innovation process as we look at the economic effects of the introduction of Genetically Modified (GM) food in the European Union (EU) agricultural and food system. We develop a partial equilibrium modeling of European agro food sector and calibrate the model's parameters by using the EU data in year 2000. We find ...


Insuring Uncertainty In Value-Added Agriculture: Ethanol, Nicholas David Paulson Jan 2004

Insuring Uncertainty In Value-Added Agriculture: Ethanol, Nicholas David Paulson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A wide variety of insurance products are currently available for agricultural producers to insure against yield or price risks in the markets for the raw commodities they produce. Value-added enterprises, such as ethanol production, have become increasingly popular among farmers over the last decade; however, insurance against declines in the value-added portion of their crops is not yet available. This paper outlines the development of an insurance product aimed at corn producers who are members of an ethanol production cooperative. The product mimics the gross margin level of a typical ethanol production facility, and has the potential to provide producers ...


The Economic Potential Of Switchgrass As A Viable Biofuel Alternative, Jennifer E. Reutzel Jan 2004

The Economic Potential Of Switchgrass As A Viable Biofuel Alternative, Jennifer E. Reutzel

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

To be commercially viable as a bioenergy feedstock, switchgrass must be cost-competitive. Switchgrass production and delivery costs are calculated for the Chariton Valley Switchgrass Biomass Project located in the Chariton Valley, Iowa. Sensitivity analyses are performed to determine which variables have the greatest impact on cost. Switchgrass production costs would require higher than expected market prices, and therefore various incentive payment options are considered. The incentive payments attempt to encapsulate the positive environmental attributes from the production of switchgrass as well as using switchgrass as a clean energy coal substitute. A modified CRP payment, carbon payment, and green tag payment ...


Panel Econometric Evidence Of Chinese Agricultural Household Behavior In The Later 1990s: Production Efficiency, Size Effects And Human Mobility , Zhuo Chen Jan 2004

Panel Econometric Evidence Of Chinese Agricultural Household Behavior In The Later 1990s: Production Efficiency, Size Effects And Human Mobility , Zhuo Chen

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The dissertation consists of three essays that analyze production efficiency, size effects and human mobility using a panel of 591 Chinese agricultural households in the later 1990s.;The first essay estimates technical efficiency through the framework of a translog stochastic production frontier with a behavioral inefficiency component. The results reveal a decreasing trend of output elasticities with respect to labor and fertilizer. The marginal effects of inefficiency terms show significant output gains by eliminating land fragmentation, improving access to education in rural area, and promoting specialization and mechanization.;The second essay examines land heterogeneities and the empirical inverse relationship in ...


The Impact Of Improved Nutrition On Labor Productivity And Gdp Growth Rate In Low- And Middle-Income Countries, Majd Abdulla Jan 2004

The Impact Of Improved Nutrition On Labor Productivity And Gdp Growth Rate In Low- And Middle-Income Countries, Majd Abdulla

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This study examined the effects of nutrition on the growth rate of country economies over time. Previous studies on this topic have resulted in debates among researchers over how significant nutritional effects are on individual country economies. For this study, data were collected for four decades (1960s, 1970, 1980s, and 1990s) for 43 low- and middle-income countries. The data were analyzed to determine the effect of nutrition, represented by dietary energy supply (DES), on the growth rate of gross domestic product (GDP) per worker and on labor productivity. The research utilized ordinary least squares, instrumental variables, and random effects regressions ...


The Food Chain Of Sheep And Policy Implications On The Sheep Sector In Syria In Highlight Of International Arrangements, Samir Grad Jan 2004

The Food Chain Of Sheep And Policy Implications On The Sheep Sector In Syria In Highlight Of International Arrangements, Samir Grad

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The sheep sector in Syria is considered as one of the most important sectors in animal production because it is the first source of meat, the second source of milk, and an export-oriented sector. Therefore, the need has emerged to study its supply chain in order to identify its weaknesses and bottlenecks and make suggestions for improvement. Accordingly, the theoretical background of food marketing is briefly presented including the functions and tools used by analyzing the marketing process. Hereby, the focus is on the approaches used by analyzing the food chains from various perspectives. In this context, the major actors ...


A Statistical Regression Model To Determine Financial Cash Flow For Wind Energy Based On Tax Structure, Matthew Dae Joong Ritsema Jan 2004

A Statistical Regression Model To Determine Financial Cash Flow For Wind Energy Based On Tax Structure, Matthew Dae Joong Ritsema

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A financial cash flow for wind turbines is based on an energy entity's tax structure. Using statistical regression of various wind turbines and wind maps, a theoretical model for energy output was calculated. The turbines were separated by the rated size of the turbine. With the theoretical model, financial output was generated for four different types of tax structures. A total of eight test cases were simulated. Special consideration was given to the impact of Production Tax Credits (PTC) and Renewable Energy Production Incentives (REPI). The object is to determine what type of business and tax structure would have ...


Supply Chain Management Of Differentiated Agricultural Products Under Imperfect Information , Miguel Alberto Carriquiry Jan 2004

Supply Chain Management Of Differentiated Agricultural Products Under Imperfect Information , Miguel Alberto Carriquiry

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Participants in a supply chain of agricultural value added products face two significant challenges. First, many of the costly distinctive traits being desired by consumers are difficult (if not impossible) to observe even after consumption. In order for markets for these classes of goods to develop, firms touting the quality of the product need to be trusted. Hence, maintaining an excellent reputation is essential for firms to keep their customers' good will. Secondly, production is conducted in an environment of yield uncertainty, making it impossible for producers and processors to predict with certainty either the quantity or the quality of ...


Land Preservation Decisions: Theoretical And Empirical Analysis , Shikha Marwah Jan 2004

Land Preservation Decisions: Theoretical And Empirical Analysis , Shikha Marwah

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

There is a great concern that human actions are leading to increased rates of extinction of species. Ecologists have pointed out that the most important threat to wildlife comes from habitat alteration. The rapidly increasing human population and the resulting pressing demand for food and living space are pushing highly diverse natural areas into agriculture and other alternative uses. Recognizing this, the Federal agencies and private organizations, such as the Nature Conservancy, are becoming increasingly engaged in programs for conservation of species, where habitat restoration is an important component. However, this conservation is costly and there is uncertainty in the ...


Relationships Of Dairy Herd Improvement Association Performance Measures To Profit Score In Dairy Herds , Michal Lunak Jan 2004

Relationships Of Dairy Herd Improvement Association Performance Measures To Profit Score In Dairy Herds , Michal Lunak

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The objectives of this research were to: (1) express variation in DHIA herd performance measures by means of limited number of factors, (2) determine the relationship of DHIA performance measures to profit score and their sensitivity to market price changes, (3) identify which herd performance measures changes were associated with profit score changes over five-year horizon.;For the variability in DHIA herd performance measures large variation among herds would indicate notable opportunity for changing management strategy. It was concluded that three independent factors offer the greatest opportunity for improvement within most production subsets. Notably, the reproductive measures of calving interval ...


Identifying The Driving Forces Of Rural Economic Growth: The Impact Of Intellectual Spillovers, Technology, And Amenities On Employment Growth In The Us Midwest , Daniel Charles Monchuk Jan 2003

Identifying The Driving Forces Of Rural Economic Growth: The Impact Of Intellectual Spillovers, Technology, And Amenities On Employment Growth In The Us Midwest , Daniel Charles Monchuk

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation examines a number of issues related to economic growth in rural regions. The major themes explored are the roles of spatial technological externalities in the creation of new knowledge, the impacts of technology and technology spillovers on non-farm employment growth, and the role of amenities influencing non-farm employment growth. The theoretical model examines the interaction between rural and urban areas in an overlapping generations model allowing migration of high skill workers. The major theoretical conclusions reached suggests: (1) if technology spillovers exist in the urban market then high skill individuals will seek employment in the urban area where ...