Human Ecology pp 195-211 | Cite as

Labor Productivity and Agricultural Development: Testing Boserup

  • Robert C. Hunt


It seems fair to say that in the Neolithic age, every household was involved in food production, but during industrial times, only a very small proportion of households (<10%) were involved in farming and feeding everyone. Food producing went from being the activity of everyone to being a sector of the economy employing few people and at the same time producing a large agricultural surplus that is exported to the rest of the economy. This is often called agricultural development, and the process by which this development has been accomplished is often referred to as intensification. There are two positions on what has happened to the productivity of labor in this developmental process: the rise thesis and the decline thesis.


Technology Package Labor Productivity Total Factor Productivity Agricultural Development Labor Input 
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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyBrandeis UniversityWalthamUSA

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