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Agricultural policy choice: interests, ideas and the scope for reform

David Booth

Working paper

African countries face serious difficulties in getting the agricultural policies they need to help turn economic growth into economic transformation. Nonetheless, radical pessimism may not be justified for two reasons. By comparing Southeast Asian and African experience in other policy fields, this paper suggests that changing policy ideas may play a role that is not captured by most political economy diagnostics. Further, it provides evidence that social and economic reforms can be achieved ‘against the odds’ when local actors are empowered to pursue a politically smart, entrepreneurial approach.

Publication information

  • IIED code: 14634IIED
  • Published: Sep 2014 - IIED
  • Theme: Food and agriculture
  • ISBN: 978-1-78431-086
  • Language: English

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Most rural Africans now live and farm in liberalised markets, which most African and international policy forums assume to be the best basis for economic activities. But there is considerable debate about these developments, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.

More at www.iied.org:
Africa’s evolving food systems

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