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Farmers' impatience and fertilizer use in Burkina Faso

Le Cotty T., Maître d'Hôtel E., Soubeyran R., Subervie J.. 2015. In : CSAE. CSAE Conference 2015 : Economic Development in Africa, Oxford, United Kingdom, 22nd - 24th March 2015. s.l. : s.n., p. 1-26. CSAE Conference 2015, 2015-03-22/2015-03-24, Oxford (Royaume-Uni).

This paper investigates the reasons why African farmers who face similar nan- cial constraints, market environments and agro-ecological conditions di er in their chemical fertilizer use behaviors. We analyze the in uence of individual preferences on fertilizer use. We model the fertilizer investment decision of a farmer : the model predicts that the quantity of fertilizer used is an increasing function of discounting. We then empirically test the empirical relevance of such a model, building upon an agricultural survey that we conducted on 1277 maize producers in the Mouhoun and Tuy provinces of Burkina Faso and upon an eld experiment we led to elicit their risk aversion and discounting. Controlling for individual nancial constraints and access to fertilizer, we show that experimental choices about time preferences correlate with observed fertilizer use behavior. This paper presents one of the the rst eld evidence that links hypothetical time discount questions to observed agri- cultural decisions. (Résumé d'auteur)

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