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Open AccessArticle

Inframarginal Model Analysis of the Evolution of Agricultural Division of Labor

1
College of Mathematics and Informatics, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, China
2
Department of Mathematics and Statistics, California State University, Long Beach, CA 90840, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Mathematics 2019, 7(12), 1152; https://doi.org/10.3390/math7121152
Received: 24 October 2019 / Revised: 24 November 2019 / Accepted: 25 November 2019 / Published: 1 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mathematics and Engineering)
Division of labor plays a critical role in many parts of agriculture. For example, a specialized division of labor can lead to the improvement of labor productivity, the reduction of production costs, and the innovation of production technology and organization. At the heart of agricultural management is how the comparative advantages of farmers impact their production decision-making behavior, and, consequently, influence the division of labor structure. In this paper, we apply an infra-marginal model to interpret the selection logic of heterogeneous farmers’ specialized production with exogenous comparative technical advantages and transaction costs. Solving the nonlinear programming problem of the utility function within each respective labor structure leads to a corner equilibrium. Under reasonable assumptions of the model, we reduced the number of possible production–consumption decision modes from the maximum of 64 to an optimal of 3. Through this analysis, we discovered the ranges for transaction efficiency coefficients and preference parameter under which each structure can achieve general equilibrium. Our theoretical model thereby explains the structural evolution of agricultural division of labor. View Full-Text
Keywords: comparative advantage; transaction cost; specialized production; infra-marginal model; agricultural division of labor comparative advantage; transaction cost; specialized production; infra-marginal model; agricultural division of labor
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Jiang, X.; Chang, J.-M.; Sun, H. Inframarginal Model Analysis of the Evolution of Agricultural Division of Labor. Mathematics 2019, 7, 1152.

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