Agriculture and Rural Development in a Globalizing World: Challenges and Opportunities, 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

Agriculture and Rural Development in a Globalizing World

Challenges and Opportunities, 1st Edition

Edited by Prabhu Pingali, Gershon Feder


380 pages | 85 B/W Illus.

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Rapid structural transformation and urbanization are transforming agriculture and food production in rural areas across the world. This textbook provides a comprehensive review and assessment of the multi-faceted nature of agriculture and rural development, particularly in the developing world, where the greatest challenges occur.

It is designed around five thematic parts: Agricultural Intensification and Technical Change; Political Economy of Agricultural Policies; Community and Rural Institutions; Agriculture, Nutrition, and Health; and Future Relevance of International Institutions. Each chapter presents a detailed but accessible review of the literature on the specific topic and discusses the frontiers in research and institutional changes needed as societies adapt to the transformation processes. All authors are eminent scholars with international reputations, who have been actively engaged in the contemporary debates around agricultural development and rural transformation.


"How do agriculture and rural development practices need to adapt to meet the needs of a world experiencing rapid globalisation and urbanisation? Such a broad but timely question demands in-depth and wide-ranging analysis, and this volume in Earthscan's Food and Agriculture series provides just that." - Spore (the newsletter of CTA), number 185

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

Prabhu Pingali and Gershon Feder

Part 1: Agricultural Intensification and Technical Change

2. Modern Agricultural Technology Adoption in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Four-Country Analysis

Gershon Feder and Sara Savastano

3. Revisiting the Farm Size–Productivity Relationship: New Evidence from Sub-Saharan African Countries

Pasquale Lucio Scandizzo and Sara Savastano

4. From Land Grabs to Land Development: The Past and Potential of Private Investment in Frontier Agriculture

Derek Byerlee, William A. Masters, and Daniel S. Robinson

5. Staples Production: Efficient "Subsistence" Smallholders Are Key to Poverty Reduction, Development, and Trade

Michael Lipton

Part 2: Political Economy of Agricultural Policies

6. Transforming African Economies and the Evolving Structure of African Agriculture

Johann Kirsten and Frikkie Liebenberg

7. Origins and Some Empirical Tests of Theories of Agricultural Evolution

John Murray McIntire

8. Toward More Evidence-based Decision-making in the Land Sector: Can It Help to Close Implementation Gaps?

Klaus Deininger

9. Food Price Changes, Domestic Price Insulation, and Poverty (When All Policymakers Want to Be Above Average)

Kym Anderson, William J. Martin, and Maros Ivanic

10. Institutional Constraints and Options for Expanding the Biotechnology Revolution in Developing Countries

Greg Traxler

Part 3: Community and Rural Institutions

11. Beyond Hype: Another Look at Index-based Agricultural Insurance

Peter Hazell and Ulrich Hess

12. Beyond Water Markets: Second-best Water Allocation Policy?

Mark W. Rosegrant, Man Li, and Wenchao Xu

13. Reflections on Community-Driven Development

Jacomina de Regt

Part 4: Agriculture, Nutrition, and Health

14. Agricultural Change and Health and Nutrition in Emerging Economies

Joachim von Braun

15. Understanding the Multidimensional Nature of the Malnutrition Problem in India

Prabhu Pingali and Tanvi Rao

Part 5: Future Relevance of International Institutions

16. Structural Transformation and the Transition from Concessional Assistance to Commercial Flows: The Past and Possible Future Contributions of the World Bank

Uma Lele, Sambuddha Goswami, and Gianluigi Nico

17. The Relevance of the CGIAR in a Modernizing World: Or Has It Been Reformed ad infinitum into Dysfunctionality?

Alex F. McCalla

About the Editors

Prabhu Pingali is a professor in the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management at Cornell University, New York, with a joint appointment in the Division of Nutritional Sciences. He is Founding Director of the Tata-Cornell Institute for Agriculture and Nutrition (TCI).

Gershon Feder is Chair of the Publications Review Committee at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Washington DC. Previously he held various positions at the World Bank, most recently Senior Research Manager at the Development Research Group.

About the Series

Earthscan Food and Agriculture

Earthscan Food and Agriculture
This series includes a wide range of inter-disciplinary approaches to food and agriculture, integrating perspectives from both social and natural sciences. It includes textbooks, research monographs and titles aimed at professionals, NGOs and policy-makers. Authors or editors of potential new titles should contact Hannah Ferguson, Editor (

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Development / Sustainable Development
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Environmental Economics
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Agriculture / General