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James M. MacDonald
   USDA-ARS(United States Department of Agriculture- Agricultural Research Service)

Jim MacDonald is chief of the Structure, Technology, and Productivity branch. The branchs work focuses on four topics. One is the measurement and analysis of agricultural productivity. Second, the branch focuses on the economics of scientific research, and the development of new biological and physical technologies, for use in agriculture. It analyzes the application of new and existing production practices, management systems, and technologies on farms. Finally, it studies the changing organization and structure of farms and the farm sector. The branch also bears major responsibility for the annual Agricultural Research Management Survey, USDAs primary source of data and farm and farm household finances and field-level production practices. Jims area of specialization lies in industrial organization, with a focus on empirical research on the topics of competition, firm organization, innovation, and industry consolidation. In this position, he has sought to apply that focus to U.S. agriculture, with work focusing on consolidation of agricultural production, competition in markets for agricultural commodities, the use of contracts in agriculture, and the organization of farms.

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  • Mergers and competition in seed and agricultural chemical markets   2017-04-11

    Agriculture in the United States uses less land, and far less labor, today than it did in the 1940s. Yet agricultural production grew by 169 percent between 1948 and 2013, with nearly all of it due to improvements in productivity. Biological, mechanical, chemical, and organizational innovations from both public and private sector investments in research and development (R&D) have largely driven this productivity growth.

    Agriculture in the United States uses less land, and far less labor, today than it did in the 1940s. Yet agricultural production grew by 169 percent between 1948 and 2013, with nearly all of it due to improvements in productivity. Biological, mechanical, chemical, and organizational innovations from both public and private sector investments in research and development (R&D) have largely driven this productivity growth.

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