Friday, November 30, 2007

EVENTS: Transforming the Rural Nonfarm Economy: Opportunities and Threats in the Developing World

For those in the Washington Area, here is a very intersting event:

IFPRI, the Sustainable Rural and Urban Development Unit of the World Bank’s Development Research Department, and the World Bank’s InfoShop invite you to a panel discussion on

Transforming the Rural Nonfarm Economy: Opportunities and Threats in the Developing World


Paul Dorosh, World Bank
Steven Haggblade, Michigan State University
John Horton, Inter-American Development Bank
Forhad Shilpi, World Bank
Maximo Torero, IFPRI

At the World Bank InfoShop
Friday, 14 December 2007
12:00 – 1:30 pm


Contrary to the conventional belief that rural economies subsist on agriculture, nonfarm work actually accounts for between one-third and one-half of rural incomes in the developing world. The nonfarm rural economy, a vibrant, often fast-growing, small-scale service and manufacturing sector, holds much promise both for overall economic growth and pro-poor rural and agricultural transformation. But it is also threatened by globalization, competition from larger businesses, and other trends.

How can this rapidly evolving segment of the economy contribute to economic growth and poverty reduction, despite the many risks? This new book, edited by Steven Haggblade, Thomas Reardon, and Peter Hazell and published by Johns Hopkins University Press on behalf of the International Food Policy Research Institute and the World Bank, answers this question in detail. Contributors examine the varied scale, structure, and composition of the rural nonfarm economy; the role of public intervention in this sector; the ways that poor people can successfully navigate the rapid transition underway in rural areas; and the most effective policy environment.

“Policymakers focus on macro-magnitudes first, urban-industrial growth next, agriculture last, and on the rural nonfarm economy hardly at all. Yet it creates at least one-third of rural income, output, and employment, and faces huge new prospects, but also huge threats, from post-liberalization supply chains. This path-breaking book organizes numerous examples and experiences into a new picture of what causes or impedes rural nonfarm growth, what makes it pro-poor, and what governments can do about it.”

--Michael Lipton, Research Professor of Economics, Poverty Research Unit, University of Sussex

This panel discussion on the book will include a question-and-answer session, as well as panelist presentations. The discussion will be held at the InfoShop, located at 701 18th St. NW, corner of 18th St. and Pennsylvania Ave.

Copies of the book will be available for purchase in the InfoShop bookstore after the event.

For more information on the book, visit
Please RSVP to if you intend to come.

Paul Dorosh is a senior economist in the Bank's Spatial and Local Development Team of the Sustainable Development Network and a book contributor. Steven Haggblade is professor of International Development at Michigan State University . John Horton is a senior natural resource specialist at the Inter-American Development Bank. Forhad Shilpi is a senior economist in the Bank’s Sustainable Rural and Urban Development Unit of the Development Research Department. Maximo Torero is director of IFPRI's Markets, Trade, and Institutions Division.

Thomas Reardon, coeditor of the book, is a professor of agricultural economics at Michigan State University . Peter Hazell, coeditor of the book, is Visiting Professor at Imperial College, London, prior to which he was director of IFPRI’s Development Strategy and Governance Division. They both will be unable to attend but can be contacted at and, respectively.

The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) was established in 1975 to provide sustainable solutions for ending hunger and poverty. IFPRI is one of 15 agricultural research centers that receive their principal funding from governments, private foundations, and international and regional organizations, most of which are members of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research.
For more information, visit

About the InfoShop
The InfoShop is the public information center and development bookstore of the World Bank. It functions as the only publicly accessible space at headquarters, hosting book launches, exhibits, seminars, receptions, and other community outreach events.
For more information, visit

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