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Abstract: Smaller plots have higher yields per unit area, referred as the Inverse Productivity Relationship Puzzle. This paper presents evidence for several hypotheses for this puzzle. First and most importantly, I used a randomized experiment to directly test the edge effects hypothesis which means plot peripheries are more productive than plot interiors for this puzzle. Specifically, by objectively ... read moremeasuring the yield at the random subplot in each field, I show that crop yield is unrelated to the distance to the plot edge. Thus no edge e↵ects are found. Then I continue to explore plot labor use and find that more intensive labor, mostly family labor, is used on smaller plots even within households and this particular pattern could explain most or all of the inverse relationship in my data. Some possible reasons for this pattern to occur are discussed in this paper. In addition, I show that measurement error in plot size does not suffice to explain the puzzle while measurement error in plot yield cannot be ruled out.
Thesis (M.S.)--Tufts University, 2018.
Submitted to the Dept. of Economics.
Advisor: Kyle Emerick.
Committee: Ujjayant Chakravorty.
Keyword: Economics.read less