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Johnson, D. Gale (1917–2003)

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The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics
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D. Gale Johnson, an intellectual leader in agricultural economics in the mid- to late 20th century, was an early critic of the parity price concept. His case against agricultural subsidies helped bring agricultural trade policy into the international policy arena. Johnson was a long-time observer of the Soviet Union and Chinese agricultural reforms. His analysis showed that investment in agricultural research, including biotechnology, primarily benefited the poor through lower real food prices. He argued that market and policy failures, not population growth, were the root causes of environmental problems in developing countries.

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  • Galbraith, J., and J. Black. 1938. The maintenance of agricultural production during depression: The explanation reviewed. Journal of Political Economy 46: 305–323.

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  • Hoover, D., and P. Johnson. 1996. D. Gale Johnson’s contribution to agricultural economics. In The economics of agriculture, vol. 2: Papers in honor of D. Gale Johnson, ed. J. Antle and D. Sumner. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

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  • National Research Council. 1986. Population growth and economic development: Policy questions. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.

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  • Sumner, D., J. Antle, and B. Gardner. 2004. Contributions of D. Gale Johnson to the economics of agriculture. Economic Development and Cultural Change 52: 659–679.

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Antle, J.M. (2018). Johnson, D. Gale (1917–2003). In: The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics. Palgrave Macmillan, London.

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