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Genetically Engineered Crops: Consumers’ Acceptance And Farmers’ Adoption, Katherine M. Lacy Jan 2018

Genetically Engineered Crops: Consumers’ Acceptance And Farmers’ Adoption, Katherine M. Lacy

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation consists of three essays broadly themed around understanding consumer acceptance and farmer’s use of genetically engineered crops. Genetic engineering (GE) has developed crops that improve food safety, such as the Innate Potato which produces low levels of acrylamide, known to be cancer-causing in humans. GE has also contributed to improved food security through yield improving crops such as herbicide tolerant crops. The first two essays of this dissertation examine consumer acceptance of the GE Innate Potato and the third essay evaluates adoption of farming practices associated with consequences from the over adopting of herbicide tolerant crops.

The ...


Studies On Factors Affecting The Evolution Of Agroecosystems In The Dakotas, Gaurav Arora Jan 2017

Studies On Factors Affecting The Evolution Of Agroecosystems In The Dakotas, Gaurav Arora

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation combines remote sensing and applied economics tools to study land use conversions in North Dakota and South Dakota that are tied to this region’s overall socio-economic welfare. Specifically, the region’s corn and soybeans cultivation expanded significantly over the past decade replacing the region’s grasslands and grain crops. In paper I, we estimate the localized impacts of the advent of corn-based ethanol plants on the Dakotas’ corn acreage. We implement a Difference-in-Difference framework through more flexible assumptions as the Parallel Paths assumption of the standard model fails to hold. We find strong trends in the Dakotas ...


Information Security Research: External Hacking, Insider Breach, And Profound Technologies, Yuanxiang Li Jan 2017

Information Security Research: External Hacking, Insider Breach, And Profound Technologies, Yuanxiang Li

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Information assets are one of the most valuable intangible productive capital for a company to compete with its rivals, to learn consumers’ shopping habits, to guide its development directions, and to standout to retain its profitability. However, with the Internet’s characteristic of pervasiveness, information breaches from both external hacking and internal corruption are continuously encroaching a company’s economic profit. This dissertation consists of three studies where each study investigates the different aspects of information security, and it is aimed to address the growing concern of securing a company’s information assets. The first study examines the external hackers ...


New Models To Estimate Costs Of Us Farm Programs, Xiaohong Zhu Jan 2016

New Models To Estimate Costs Of Us Farm Programs, Xiaohong Zhu

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

In this study, I extended the stochastic model built by Babcock and Paulson (2012) to conduct a one-year cost projection for crop insurance in order to investigate its feasibility of being solely provided by private firms. Based on the 52 years’ yield data from 1961 to 2012, the risk consequences from insuring crop yield and revenue against losses are estimated to be far beyond what private insurers could bear on their own. However, reinsurance from the government provides an attractive incentive to insurance firms. Among the six insurance policies researched in this study, the minimum expected net underwriting gains to ...


Tough Tobacco Transitions, Joshua Glen Lang Jan 2016

Tough Tobacco Transitions, Joshua Glen Lang

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The rapid transformation of the agriculture system in the United States over the course of the twentieth century has continually challenged farmers to adjust and innovate to survive. In North Carolina, in recent decades, tobacco farmers have been forced to mechanize, diversify, or transition their farm operations. Interestingly, most tobacco farmers that have chosen to continue farming have opted for the less profitable grain and livestock industries instead of pursuing fruit and vegetable industries, which can match or exceed the income per acre from tobacco production. Research on this topic has covered the processes behind the declining tobacco industry, begun ...


Three Essays On Modeling Biofuel Feedstock Supply, Wei Zhou Jan 2015

Three Essays On Modeling Biofuel Feedstock Supply, Wei Zhou

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

The general theme of this dissertation is modeling biofuel feedstock supply. All three essays focuses on different topics relating to the theme. The first essay considers supply of corn stover for a commercial production of a cellulosic ethanol plant. The economic trade-offs in determining the plant size under uncertain future corn stover yields and cellulosic ethanol prices are analyzed. We also estimate the impacts on optimal plant sizes under two payment schemes for corn stover procurement: plant pays for transportation cost and farmers pay for the transportation cost. My second essay analyzes the impact of ethanol mandates on corn prices ...


Mechanization Potential For Expanding Midwestern Fruit And Vegetable Enterprises, Nicholas Jon Pates Jan 2013

Mechanization Potential For Expanding Midwestern Fruit And Vegetable Enterprises, Nicholas Jon Pates

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Midwestern fruit and vegetable farmers face challenges in expanding their farms. Growing fruit and vegetables remains a labor intensive industry and most of the country's commercial production takes place on large scale farms in the Western United States. Mechanization may aid farmers in scaling up production by offsetting labor costs. This report uses a six-farm case study and a survey to examine the trends of both labor and machine use over different levels of production. Larger farms tended to use more labor and machinery but machinery seems to exhibit a degree of labor savings potential. The context of expansions ...


The Trade Effects, Protectionism, And Political Economy Of Non-Tariff Measures, Yuan Li Jan 2013

The Trade Effects, Protectionism, And Political Economy Of Non-Tariff Measures, Yuan Li

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Non-tariff measures (NTMs) have become increasingly present in markets whereas border tariffs have been reduced from successive rounds of General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and the World Trade Organization (WTO). This emergence of NTMs, especially standards like NTMs, has been also motivated by concerns about market imperfections to address asymmetric information and external effects. Sorting protectionism from legitimate market intervention has been difficult and attempts have lack formalism. In addition, the empirical evidence on the impact of these NTMs on trade flows has been cluttered with few obvious implications for policy design. The first essay takes a meta-analysis ...


Essays On Agricultural, Financial Economics And Education, Juan Manuel Murguia Baysse Jan 2013

Essays On Agricultural, Financial Economics And Education, Juan Manuel Murguia Baysse

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation is devoted to the study of three different topics under the advice of three different mayor professors. The only thing these topics have in common is the interest and curiosity of the author to explain real life events, using applied econometric techniques. Chapter 2 applies financial tools to assess whether stock values reacted across world markets to the announcement of indexes that synthesize the environmental performance of the world's largest publicly-traded companies. The environmental index selected for this purpose is the "Global 100 Ranking" (G100), a ranking of the 100 largest public companies by market capitalization. The ...


Farmland Price Determinants In Iowa, Matthew Carl Stinn Jan 2012

Farmland Price Determinants In Iowa, Matthew Carl Stinn

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Farmland comprises 85% of the assets in production agriculture. Surveys show over a 32.5% increase in values from 2010 to 2011 in Iowa. An analysis of recent farmland sales data leads to a better understanding of both why prices have been increasing, and possible changes in prices in the future. The factors examined include parcel size, land productivity, and location and type of sellers and buyers. The analysis is both over time and static; it compared characteristics from year to year, and it compared characteristics in the same year.

A data set with land sales from 20 randomly selected ...


Three Essays On Non-Tariff Measures And The Gravity Equation Approach To Trade, Bo Xiong Jan 2012

Three Essays On Non-Tariff Measures And The Gravity Equation Approach To Trade, Bo Xiong

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Following multilateral and regional trade agreements, import tariffs on agricultural and food products have been declining globally. Meanwhile, the proliferation of non-tariff measures (NTMs), including Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures and Technical Barriers to Trade (TBTs), has been triggering trade concerns and protracted trade disputes, and efforts to harmonize these measures. Most standard-like NTMs allegedly protect human and animal health, and the environment from foreign threats. The rising public awareness of food safety and/or consumption externalities drives the emergence of these measures. Protectionist motives may also ride on this emergence and lead to unnecessary impediments in international trade. Delineating ...


Essays Concerning The Cellulosic Biofuel Industry, Alicia Sue Rosburg Jan 2012

Essays Concerning The Cellulosic Biofuel Industry, Alicia Sue Rosburg

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Despite market-based incentives and mandated production, the U.S. cellulosic biofuel industry has been slow to develop. This dissertation explores the economic factors that have limited industry development along with important economic tradeoffs that will be encountered with commercial-scale production. The first essay provides an overview of the policies, potential, and challenges of the biofuel industry, with a focus on cellulosic biofuel. The second essay considers the economics of cellulosic biofuel production. Breakeven models of the local feedstock supply system and biofuel refining process are constructed to develop the Biofuel Breakeven (BioBreak) program, a stochastic, Excel-based program that evaluates the ...


Three Essays On Biofuel, Environmental Economics, And International Trade, Jingbo Cui Jan 2012

Three Essays On Biofuel, Environmental Economics, And International Trade, Jingbo Cui

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation focuses on two independent areas: the analysis of biofuel and related energy policies, and the relationship between trade and the environment with heterogeneous firms. Chapter 1 provides quantitative estimates of the welfare benefits of U.S. biofuel and related energy polices. The remaining two chapters investigate the firm-level relationship between trade and the environment using theoretical model and empirical evidence. Chapter 2, theoretical in nature, explores the impact of the stringency of environmental policy and exposure to trade on the induced clean technology adoption and on firm dynamics. Using a unique detailed facility-level dataset containing criteria air emissions ...


Individual Decisions And Outside Influences Affecting U.S. Commodity Markets And Cropland Used For Grain Production, Nathan Scott Kauffman Jan 2012

Individual Decisions And Outside Influences Affecting U.S. Commodity Markets And Cropland Used For Grain Production, Nathan Scott Kauffman

Graduate Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation is composed of four essays broadly focusing on U.S. commodity markets with an emphasis on grains and cropland used to produce grains. The essays each address specific factors surrounding commodity markets and agricultural land-use which have been relevant in individual decision-making processes or recent policy debates. The first essay is motivated by data which reveal that grain producers' hedging decisions have changed over time, and have been strongly correlated with futures price levels. Using prospect theory as the underlying behavioral framework, there are two main goals: to outline a mechanism that allows for this correlation, and to ...


Essays On Fall Fertilizer Application, Mira Nurmakhanova Jan 2008

Essays On Fall Fertilizer Application, Mira Nurmakhanova

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Increased use of nitrogen fertilizer in agricultural production has contributed to increased food production but also contributed to elevated concentration levels of nitrates in groundwater and surface water. High concentration levels of nitrates in drinking water supplied from groundwater and surface water have become a public concern because of their risks to human health.;One way to reduce nitrogen losses is to develop and apply technologies that enable farmers to more accurately match the amount and timing of fertilizer application to crop growth needs. It is best to apply nitrogen as close as possible to when crop needs it most ...


Alternative Approaches For Sharing Machinery, Labor, And Other Resources Among Small- And Medium-Sized Agricultural Producers, Greg Colson Jan 2008

Alternative Approaches For Sharing Machinery, Labor, And Other Resources Among Small- And Medium-Sized Agricultural Producers, Greg Colson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

As the U.S. agriculture industry continues to become increasingly concentrated, the viability of small- and medium-sized farms faced with diminishing profit margins per unit of output hinges in part on their ability to expand operations. In this study, the solution to this problem of taking advantage of economies of scale through farm-level resource sharing arrangements is considered. Through a two phase data collection procedure, Midwestern farmer groups engaged in resource sharing arrangements were identified and investigated through a case study approach. Evidence from the case studies suggest that sharing of equipment and labor can yield not only financial benefits ...


Program Theory Of A Usda Grants Program For Use In Evaluation Based On Quantitative Content Analysis And Oral History Narrative Analysis, Elena Yu Polush Jan 2007

Program Theory Of A Usda Grants Program For Use In Evaluation Based On Quantitative Content Analysis And Oral History Narrative Analysis, Elena Yu Polush

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This research was conceived on the premise that a good evaluation plan for a program begins with explicating the program's essential conceptual underpinnings, namely the program theory. Theory-based evaluation is generally recognized as enhancing the quality of evaluation. However, the theory-based approach remains underutilized in evaluation of federal competitive grants programs. The goal of the research was to depict a coherent description of program theory for the Higher Education Challenge (HEC) grants program grounded on core aspects of theories developed in two studies. The research used quantitative content analysis to systematically study the texts of Request for Application (RFA ...


Three Essays On Contract Farming In China, Jianhua Zhu Jan 2007

Three Essays On Contract Farming In China, Jianhua Zhu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Contract farming in China has grown rapidly over the past 10 years. The first part of this dissertation examines the evolution of contract farming, and explores the incentives to engage in contract farming, preferred contract provisions, and contract performance from the perspective of both Chinese farmers and contracting firms. Firm and household perceptions of contracting are assessed using data obtained from village and firm level surveys. Farmers identify price stability and market access as the key advantages to contracts, while firms consider improved product quality as the primary incentive to use contracts.;In Part II, the survey data are used ...


Three Essays On Food Quality And Transaction Costs , Chengyan Yue Jan 2006

Three Essays On Food Quality And Transaction Costs , Chengyan Yue

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Product quality and product differentiation have become increasingly important to producers and policymakers for explaining consumer choice over food products. Consumers are often willing to pay large price premiums for products with preferred attributes. Heterogeneity in quality increases the diversity of goods for consumers and can improve welfare. However, variation in quality also leads to higher transaction costs for consumers, producers and policymakers because quality attributes are hard to identify precisely and vary when the state of the world changes. The first essay addresses the issue of food-quality attributes driven by protectionist policy that inhibits exchange between two countries. Technical ...


Micro-Level Econometric And Water-Quality Modeling: Simulation Of Nutrient Management Policy Effects , Christopher Sean Burkart Jan 2006

Micro-Level Econometric And Water-Quality Modeling: Simulation Of Nutrient Management Policy Effects , Christopher Sean Burkart

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

Large surface areas of lakes and streams are impaired by nutrient contributions from agricultural nonpoint sources. This research develops a fully integrated economic and water quality model of an actual watershed to assess alternative nutrient abatement polities in terms of their economic efficiency and water quality effects. The policies examined include fertilizer taxes, application rate caps, uniform reductions, and a cap-and-trade fertilizer application right trading scheme. A micro-econometric field scale model of nutrient application is estimated using USDA Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS) data combined with prices and spatially detailed soil data. Estimation results are interfaced with the Soil and ...


An Analysis Of The Iowan Angler's Fishing License Renewal Decision, Ryan R. French Jan 2006

An Analysis Of The Iowan Angler's Fishing License Renewal Decision, Ryan R. French

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The number of annual fishing licenses sold in Iowa has been in decline for two decades and has limited the amount of funds available to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources for fisheries management. The Iowa DNR is focused on reversing this trend through targeted marketing and efficient management of fishing resources. An analysis of Iowa anglers is performed with these goals in mind using past surveys and current customer data. The product of this analysis is a model which predicts whether a past customer will renew their license in the upcoming year. A logit model is developed using license ...


Three Essays On Rural Economic Growth , Georgeanne Michael Artz Jan 2005

Three Essays On Rural Economic Growth , Georgeanne Michael Artz

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation is a collection of three papers, each analyzing a particular issue related to economic growth in rural America. The first paper explores the problem of defining rural and the implications for measuring rural growth. It discusses the sample selection problem inherent in using classification methods based on population that change over time. Fast growing rural areas grow out of their rural status, so using the most recent definition of rural in an analysis of growth excludes the most successful places. The findings demonstrate that average economic performance of the areas remaining rural significantly understates the true performance of ...


Industrializing The Corn Belt: Iowa Farmers, Technology And The Midwestern Landscape, 1945-1972 , Joseph Leslie Anderson Jan 2005

Industrializing The Corn Belt: Iowa Farmers, Technology And The Midwestern Landscape, 1945-1972 , Joseph Leslie Anderson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

From 1945 to 1972 Iowa farmers remade their landscape in the image of an industrial model characterized by large-scale production, the substitution of capital for labor, strict cost accounting, specialization, and efficiency. Farm families were leaders in adopting new technology to solve their problems in the post World War II period, a contrast to the pre-war years when experts such as college educated professionals, journalists, and industry leaders advocated the application of industrial ideals to agriculture. Many farmers industrialized production because of a persistent postwar farm labor shortage and a cost-price squeeze in which the prices farmers paid for products ...


Three Essays On The Economics Of Innovation , Harun Bulut Jan 2005

Three Essays On The Economics Of Innovation , Harun Bulut

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

We have identified three specific problems in the economics of innovation and addressed each of them in separate essays in this thesis.;Essay 1 revisits the problem of inefficient diversification efforts of firms in a R&D race setting (Dasgupta and Maskin, 1987)1 by taking into account the fact that firms have the option of trade secrecy in addition to patents in protecting their inventions. This essay is theoretical in nature as we use a game-theoretic modeling of firms' project and IP choices in a R&D race. We find that the availability of multiple IPR protection instruments can move the paths chosen by firms engaged in a R&D race towards the social optimum.;Essay 2 refers to the adoption and diffusion stages of the innovation process as we look at the economic effects of the introduction of Genetically Modified (GM) food in the European Union (EU) agricultural and food system. We develop a partial equilibrium modeling of European agro food sector and calibrate the model's parameters by using the EU data in year 2000. We find ...


Essays On International Trade, Endogenous Quality And Invasive Species Risk , Anh Thuy Tu Jan 2005

Essays On International Trade, Endogenous Quality And Invasive Species Risk , Anh Thuy Tu

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation studies the relation between international trade and two issues that have become the active fields of economic research: the firms' quality decisions and the invasive species risk.;On the quality choice, the dissertation focuses on the impact of Voluntary Import Expansions (VIEs) on firms' quality decisions. I model a vertically differentiated international duopoly, with one firm in each country. A domestic and an exporting firm choose the quality of their goods and then compete in the domestic market. Both quantity and price conjectures are considered. The paper investigates the case where the government of the exporting country imposes ...


Investment In The Stock Market And Value-Added Agricultural Businesses As Portfolio Investment Alternatives To Farm Expansion, Joshua David Roe Jan 2005

Investment In The Stock Market And Value-Added Agricultural Businesses As Portfolio Investment Alternatives To Farm Expansion, Joshua David Roe

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

In the past decade, farmers have increasingly invested in value-added agriculture. Analysis of these investments compared to farm expansion by farmers was conducted from a portfolio optimization standpoint. Farms with similar investment patterns were identified by cluster analysis. When individual farm characteristics were analyzed to determine how these attributes affected investment choices, clear influences were found. In general, value-added agricultural investments were found to be an efficient investment alternative to farm expansion. Because of their larger risk, stock market investments play a smaller role in an optimized producer portfolio.


Insuring Uncertainty In Value-Added Agriculture: Ethanol, Nicholas David Paulson Jan 2004

Insuring Uncertainty In Value-Added Agriculture: Ethanol, Nicholas David Paulson

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

A wide variety of insurance products are currently available for agricultural producers to insure against yield or price risks in the markets for the raw commodities they produce. Value-added enterprises, such as ethanol production, have become increasingly popular among farmers over the last decade; however, insurance against declines in the value-added portion of their crops is not yet available. This paper outlines the development of an insurance product aimed at corn producers who are members of an ethanol production cooperative. The product mimics the gross margin level of a typical ethanol production facility, and has the potential to provide producers ...


The Economic Potential Of Switchgrass As A Viable Biofuel Alternative, Jennifer E. Reutzel Jan 2004

The Economic Potential Of Switchgrass As A Viable Biofuel Alternative, Jennifer E. Reutzel

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

To be commercially viable as a bioenergy feedstock, switchgrass must be cost-competitive. Switchgrass production and delivery costs are calculated for the Chariton Valley Switchgrass Biomass Project located in the Chariton Valley, Iowa. Sensitivity analyses are performed to determine which variables have the greatest impact on cost. Switchgrass production costs would require higher than expected market prices, and therefore various incentive payment options are considered. The incentive payments attempt to encapsulate the positive environmental attributes from the production of switchgrass as well as using switchgrass as a clean energy coal substitute. A modified CRP payment, carbon payment, and green tag payment ...


Relationships Of Dairy Herd Improvement Association Performance Measures To Profit Score In Dairy Herds , Michal Lunak Jan 2004

Relationships Of Dairy Herd Improvement Association Performance Measures To Profit Score In Dairy Herds , Michal Lunak

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The objectives of this research were to: (1) express variation in DHIA herd performance measures by means of limited number of factors, (2) determine the relationship of DHIA performance measures to profit score and their sensitivity to market price changes, (3) identify which herd performance measures changes were associated with profit score changes over five-year horizon.;For the variability in DHIA herd performance measures large variation among herds would indicate notable opportunity for changing management strategy. It was concluded that three independent factors offer the greatest opportunity for improvement within most production subsets. Notably, the reproductive measures of calving interval ...


Panel Econometric Evidence Of Chinese Agricultural Household Behavior In The Later 1990s: Production Efficiency, Size Effects And Human Mobility , Zhuo Chen Jan 2004

Panel Econometric Evidence Of Chinese Agricultural Household Behavior In The Later 1990s: Production Efficiency, Size Effects And Human Mobility , Zhuo Chen

Retrospective Theses and Dissertations

The dissertation consists of three essays that analyze production efficiency, size effects and human mobility using a panel of 591 Chinese agricultural households in the later 1990s.;The first essay estimates technical efficiency through the framework of a translog stochastic production frontier with a behavioral inefficiency component. The results reveal a decreasing trend of output elasticities with respect to labor and fertilizer. The marginal effects of inefficiency terms show significant output gains by eliminating land fragmentation, improving access to education in rural area, and promoting specialization and mechanization.;The second essay examines land heterogeneities and the empirical inverse relationship in ...