Person:
Larson, Donald F.

Development Research Group, World Bank
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Fields of Specialization
Rural Development Policy; Natural Resource Policy; Agricultural Productivity and Growth; Climate Change Policy and Markets; Commodity Markets and Risk
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Development Research Group, World Bank
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Biography
Donald F. Larson is a Senior Economist with the World Bank’s Development Research Group. He holds a B.A in economics from the College of William and Mary, an M.A. in economics from Virginia Tech, and a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Resource Economics from the University of Maryland. With colleagues, he has authored or edited five books, including An African Green Revolution: Finding Ways to Boost Productivity on Small Farms, a forthcoming volume from Springer, and The Clean Development Mechanism: An Early History of Unanticipated Outcomes, a forthcoming volume from World Scientific. He has published numerous book chapters and journal articles, with an emphasis on agricultural productivity and growth; food and rural development policies; natural resource policies; the institutions and markets related to climate change; and the performance of commodity futures and risk markets. During his time with the World Bank, Don has participated in policy discussion in Africa, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, East Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean. He was a member of the team that launched the World Bank’s Prototype Carbon Fund.  
Citations 160 Scopus

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 2 of 2
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    On the Central Role of Small Farms in African Rural Development Strategies
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-06) Larson, Donald F. ; Muraoka, Rie ; Otsuka, Keijiro
    Improving the productivity of smallholder farms in Sub-Saharan Africa offers the best chance to reduce poverty among this generation of rural poor, by building on the limited resources farming households already possess. It is also the best and shortest path to meet rising food needs. Using examples from farmers' maize and rice fields, and comparisons with Asia, this paper examines why the set of technologies promoted to date have produced localized successes rather than transformational change. The paper explains the limitations of alternative policies that are not centered on small farms. It provides indicative examples of how resource-management technologies can supplement seed-fertilizer technologies to speed an African Green Revolution.
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    Long-Term Impacts of an Unanticipated Risk Event: The 2007/08 Food Price Crisis and Child Growth in Indonesia
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-04) Yamauchi, Futoshi ; Larson, Donald F.
    Unanticipated spikes in food prices can increase malnutrition among the poor, with lasting consequences; however, livelihood strategies that include producing food for home consumption are expected to offer a measure of protection. Using anthropometric and consumption data from Indonesia collected before and after the 2007/08 food price crisis, this paper finds evidence of both effects. Based on standardized height and weight measures, the results indicate that soaring food prices had a significant and negative impact on child growth among non-farming households. A corresponding effect was undetectable for food-producing households. The results remain robust when income effects from increased commercial sales and possible attritions through migration and fostering are considered. Further, local food price changes were uncorrelated with the share of non-farming village households and the initial average child nutrition status in the village, suggesting that the observed outcomes are directly attributable to market events and livelihood strategies. Interestingly, gender differences were not detected. The findings imply that the food price crises can have negative impacts on children, potentially leading to lifelong income inequality among those affected at a vulnerable stage of life.