Land tenure, farm size, and rural market participation in developing countries: the case of the Tunisian olive sector

L. T. Zaibet, E. G. Dunn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Specifically, we posit that the peasant's attitude vis-a-vis market mparticipation is better understood if structural factors related to the farm characteristics are investigated. In the Tunisian context, land tenure systems have been a central issue in discussions about land productivity and economic efficiency. Yet, there have been no studies on the impact of tenure on market participation. Farm size, the number of plots per farm, and other household characteristics are also posited to be important determinants of market participation. Most of the literature has focused on the supply side, such as output, labor, and land supply, but has ignored the farmer's factor-demand side. The contribution of this study is to investigate the determinants of the farmer's decision to use market inputs. We test a logit model to determine the factors most influential in the olive farmer's decision to exchange with the market. Cross-sectional farm data are used to test the behavioral relationships specified. In the next section, we provide an historical overview of agrarian structure and reforms in Tunisia. The impacts of such structural developments will be discussed. Hypotheses descrbing how different conditions regarding tenure status and farm size yield different levels of exchange with the market are presented in Section III. Section IV lays out the empirical framework and the estimation results. The article ends with conclusions and policy implications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)831-848
Number of pages18
JournalEconomic Development and Cultural Change
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Economics and Econometrics

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