Agricultural development, mechanization and rental markets: theory and empirics from Ghana and Ethiopia

The aim of my work is to better understand the increasing mechanization of agricultural production in parts of Africa, especially in the context of changing rural labor markets, urbanization, and structural transformation. Specifically, I am using a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods to consider (i) the heterogeneity in machinery use across farmers, (ii) the impact mechanization has had on local farming systems and economies, and (iii) the role that rural institutions governing labor, capital, and land have played in facilitating technology adoption.  The cases of Ethiopia and Ghana will be considered as these are countries where agricultural machinery imports have been increasing, government policies exist to promote mechanization, and agriculture is a key sector for economic development and poverty reduction.

Frances Cossar
Research Student