Policy Insights in Agriculture

J-PAL’s Agriculture sector focuses on improving agricultural systems in developing countries. Our policy insights below summarize general lessons from randomized evaluations on providing credit and information to smallholder farmers and protecting them from risk.
Craig McIntosh (University of California, San Diego) and Tavneet Suri (Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)), Agriculture Co-Chairs
farmers in a field
Photo: Tom Gilks | J-PAL
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Protecting farmers from weather-based risk

Last updated: نوفمبر 2023
When designed well, insurance does protect small-scale farmers from adverse weather events, but farmers have low demand for these products at market prices. New technologies and climate-smart agricultural practices can reduce farmers’ risk exposure and increase their climate resiliency. More...

Improving agricultural information and extension services to increase small-scale farmer productivity

Last updated: سبتمبر 2023
Agricultural extension services can be improved by leveraging tools like information and communication technologies, trainer incentives, or social learning to support small-scale farmers’ decisions to invest in new, profitable practices. Extension programs that target both male and female members of...

Incentivizing higher-quality agricultural outputs

Last updated: سبتمبر 2021
Despite making investments in technologies and practices to improve the quality of their products, smallholder farmers in low- and middle-income countries do not often receive higher prices for their higher-quality agricultural goods. Disorganized markets with many intermediaries may make quality...

Facilitating savings among smallholder farmers to smooth or increase consumption

Last updated: مايو 2019
Offering savings products to smallholder farmers did not transform agricultural investment or output in six studies in sub-Saharan Africa. In a few cases, savings products sometimes benefited farmers by providing a form of risk protection and by helping them smooth consumption over time.

Credit's limited impact on smallholder farm profitability

Last updated: أبريل 2018
Increasing access to traditional microcredit has had limited impacts on smallholder farmers’ profitability in randomized evaluations in developing countries. Demand for new offers of credit was low, ranging from 17 to 33 percent, and even when farmers used traditional credit products to invest in...

Sector Chairs

رئيس مشارك, Agriculture

Professor of Economics

University of California, San Diego

Tavneet Suri headshot

رئيس مشارك, Agriculture

Member, Executive Committee

Associate Professor of Applied Economics

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Sector Contacts

Headshot of Sarah Coughlin

Senior Policy Associate, J-PAL Global

Headshot of Leonie Rauls

Senior Policy Associate, J-PAL Global

Headshot of Emily Sylvia

Senior Policy Manager, J-PAL Global

Headshot of Diana Warira

Policy Manager, J-PAL Global