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Abstract

This thesis is focused on measuring and assessing country-level trends in average farm size and farm size distributions over space and time and across income levels worldwide. We develop and implement a new variant of the Generalized Method of Moments approach to estimate farm size distributions derived from world census data. Notwithstanding a major data collection effort, global generalizations are difficult due to incomplete and inconsistent farm size samples over time. However, we did find that average farm sizes have been increasing overall for both high and low to middle income countries. We also detected complex structural differences between countries stratified by income class. These differences were revealed by estimating farm size distributions (and a range of associated summary statistics) that would otherwise be masked when considering the global dynamics of farm size based only on changes in the average size of farm per country.

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