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Agricultural growth and institutions: Sweden 1700-1860

Olsson, Mats LU and Svensson, Patrick LU (2010) In European Review of Economic History 14. p.275-304
Abstract
The dating and explanation of the agricultural revolution in Europe remains an elusive research task. When and why did a low-productive pre-industrial agricultural sector turn into a fast-growing, more productive one? Unique data from Sweden, consisting of more than 80,000 observations of farm production output for the period 1700–1860, is used to calculate and explain decisive changes in pre-industrial agricultural production. Our estimations show that crop production more than quadrupled during the period studied and from the 1780s and onwards production growth by far outstripped population growth. Furthermore, the data allows us to estimate the determinants of change on individual farm level. The results show that enclosures, markets... (More)
The dating and explanation of the agricultural revolution in Europe remains an elusive research task. When and why did a low-productive pre-industrial agricultural sector turn into a fast-growing, more productive one? Unique data from Sweden, consisting of more than 80,000 observations of farm production output for the period 1700–1860, is used to calculate and explain decisive changes in pre-industrial agricultural production. Our estimations show that crop production more than quadrupled during the period studied and from the 1780s and onwards production growth by far outstripped population growth. Furthermore, the data allows us to estimate the determinants of change on individual farm level. The results show that enclosures, markets and property rights were of significant importance. Institutional changes, affecting the incentives and the organisation of production, made peasants invest in production and productivity. In a general sense this shows the flexibility and awareness of pre-industrial European peasants in exploiting markets and initiating institutional change. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
nineteenth century, Sweden, institutions, agriculture, growth, eighteenth century
in
European Review of Economic History
volume
14
pages
275 - 304
publisher
Cambridge University Press
external identifiers
  • wos:000280988700004
  • scopus:78650420134
ISSN
1474-0044
DOI
10.1017/S1361491610000067
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
49f6f464-5a55-44d6-8b64-c04b139ea0f9 (old id 1502062)
date added to LUP
2009-11-06 10:04:39
date last changed
2018-05-29 09:48:50
@article{49f6f464-5a55-44d6-8b64-c04b139ea0f9,
  abstract     = {The dating and explanation of the agricultural revolution in Europe remains an elusive research task. When and why did a low-productive pre-industrial agricultural sector turn into a fast-growing, more productive one? Unique data from Sweden, consisting of more than 80,000 observations of farm production output for the period 1700–1860, is used to calculate and explain decisive changes in pre-industrial agricultural production. Our estimations show that crop production more than quadrupled during the period studied and from the 1780s and onwards production growth by far outstripped population growth. Furthermore, the data allows us to estimate the determinants of change on individual farm level. The results show that enclosures, markets and property rights were of significant importance. Institutional changes, affecting the incentives and the organisation of production, made peasants invest in production and productivity. In a general sense this shows the flexibility and awareness of pre-industrial European peasants in exploiting markets and initiating institutional change.},
  author       = {Olsson, Mats and Svensson, Patrick},
  issn         = {1474-0044},
  keyword      = {nineteenth century,Sweden,institutions,agriculture,growth,eighteenth century},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {275--304},
  publisher    = {Cambridge University Press},
  series       = {European Review of Economic History},
  title        = {Agricultural growth and institutions: Sweden 1700-1860},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S1361491610000067},
  volume       = {14},
  year         = {2010},
}