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Editor: Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Historia Económica e InstitucionesUniversidad Carlos III de Madrid. Instituto Figuerola de Historia Económica

Issued date: 2007-07

Serie-No.: Working papers in Economic History07-11

Keywords: Sharecropping , French agriculture , Wine history

JEL Classification: D24 , L61 , N13 , N14 , N63 , N64 , O47

Rights: Atribución-NoComercial-SinDerivadas 3.0 España

Abstract:The traditional view that sharecropping was a cause of low productivity inEuropean agriculture prior to the Second World War has been challenged byeconomic historians, and today the contact is often considered as efficient atreducing the monitoring costsThe traditional view that sharecropping was a cause of low productivity inEuropean agriculture prior to the Second World War has been challenged byeconomic historians, and today the contact is often considered as efficient atreducing the monitoring costs associated with labour and allocation of riskbetween landowners and farmers, especially when capital markets were weakfor working capital. Yet if sharecropping was a relatively efficient contract, whywas it not found more often? This paper looks at the vine, a crop that waswidespread in Europe and that has been central to the current debates. Itargues that while the literature has been right to emphasise the importance ofthe high monitoring costs, it has ignored the equally important costs associatedwith dividing the harvest. These were sufficiently large to make the contractunattractive, except in the few cases where the landowner was prepared to beactively involved in wine making and its sale, such as was found in Beaujolaisor Tuscany.+-





Author: Carmona, Juan; Simpson, James

Source: http://e-archivo.uc3m.es


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Universidad Carlos III de Madrid Repositorio institucional e-Archivo http:--e-archivo.uc3m.es Instituto Figuerola de Historia y Ciencias Sociales IFCS - Working Papers in Economic History.WH 2007-07 Why sharecropping? : explaining its presence and absence in Europes vineyards, 1750-1950 Carmona, Juan http:--hdl.handle.net-10016-942 Descargado de e-Archivo, repositorio institucional de la Universidad Carlos III de Madrid UNIVERSIDAD CARLOS III DE MADRID Working Papers in Economic History July 2007 WP 07-11 Why sharecropping? Explaining its presence and absence in Europe’s vineyards, 1750-1950 Juan Carmona and James Simpson Abstract The traditional view that sharecropping was a cause of low productivity in European agriculture prior to the Second World War has been challenged by economic historians, and today the contact is often considered as efficient at reducing the monitoring costs associated with labour and allocation of risk between landowners and farmers, especially when capital markets were weak for working capital.
Yet if sharecropping was a relatively efficient contract, why was it not found more often? This paper looks at the vine, a crop that was widespread in Europe and that has been central to the current debates.
It argues that while the literature has been right to emphasise the importance of the high monitoring costs, it has ignored the equally important costs associated with dividing the harvest.
These were sufficiently large to make the contract unattractive, except in the few cases where the landowner was prepared to be actively involved in wine making and its sale, such as was found in Beaujolais or Tuscany. Keywords: sharecropping, French agriculture, wine history JEL Classification: D24, L61, N13, N14, N63, N64 and O47 Juan Carmona: Departamento de Historia Económica e Instituciones, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, C-Madrid 126, 28903 Getafe, Spain. Email: jucar@clio.uc3m.es http:--www.uc3m.es-uc3m-dpto-HISEC-English-faculty-Per...





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