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"Ester Boserup"
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Education.
2017 (English)In: The Encyclopedia of Social Theory: (Book in process. Article accepted.) / [ed] George Ritzer, Sage Publications, 2017Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Ester Boserup (1910-1999) was a Danish economist and researcher who worked primarily for United Nations agencies focusing on agricultural development problems. She launched a theory based on empirical results from her regional studies in Africa, Asia and Latin America, that - contrary to Malthus and the Neo-Malthusians - saw population growth as a prerequisite to economic growth, not the other way around. She argued that population growth and the subsequent increased demand for food leads to technological innovations and new organisation models in order to intensify production. Her studies from different parts of the world enabled her to theorize various forms of subsistence farming under different types of property rights and gender divisions of labor. Pointing to the vital role of women, especially in the informal - or non-monetized - economy, she was a pioneer in introducing more realistic production estimates and development of policies that did not automatically subordinate women.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2017.
Keyword [en]
development economics; agricultural development; household economy; demography; gender division of labor
National Category
Social Sciences
Research subject
Economic History
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-305769OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-305769DiVA: diva2:1039137
Available from: 2016-10-21 Created: 2016-10-21 Last updated: 2016-10-21

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