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Minten B.,International Food Policy Research Institute | Murshid K.A.S.,Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies | Reardon T.,Michigan State University | Reardon T.,International Food Policy Research Institute | Reardon T.,Renmin University of China
World Development | Year: 2013

In Dhaka, the share of the less expensive coarse rice is shown to be rapidly decreasing in rice markets and it thus seems that the role of rice as only a cheap staple food is being redefined. The increasing demand for the more expensive varieties is seemingly associated with a more important off-farm food sector-in particular, milling, retailing, and branding-as well as a transformed milling industry. We further find that the labor rewards for growing different rice varieties are not significantly different and that farmers do not benefit directly from consumers' increased willingness to pay for rice. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

Murshid K.A.S.,Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies
Journal of Agrarian Change | Year: 2015

This paper explores the unaddressed question of how the large, complex paddy-rice market in Bangladesh is able to transform itself and evolve, in the face of changing risks and incentives, into a better-functioning market system. It notes significant but opposing trends over two decades in different areas, particularly in terms of market structure, trade circuits and exchange relations. Evidence of a sharp decline in tied transactions points to the growing importance of impersonal exchange. The underlying causes of these changes are explored, with particular reference to microfinance, remittances, rural roads and mobile telephony. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Ahmed N.,University of South Australia | Toufique K.A.,Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies
Aquaculture Research | Year: 2015

Rapid development of small-scale freshwater aquaculture in the Mymensingh district of north-central Bangladesh has been linked to a 'blue revolution'. Mymensingh is ranked first among districts of pond fish production in Bangladesh. Aquaculture in Mymensingh plays an important role in the local economy, contributing to food production, livelihood opportunities, income generation, poverty alleviation and social transformation. However, a number of challenges, particularly social, economic and environmental issues, will need to be overcome to translate its benefits effectively. We propose a conceptual framework for greening the blue revolution of aquaculture, which links social, economic and ecological aspects for promoting the importance of socio-ecological, ecological-economic and socio-economic interactions. We conclude that active community participation, institutional collaboration and policy support are needed for greening the blue revolution of aquaculture in Mymensingh. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

Luoto J.,RAND Corporation | Najnin N.,International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research | Mahmud M.,International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research | Mahmud M.,Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies | And 5 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Background: There is evidence that household point-of-use (POU) water treatment products can reduce the enormous burden of water-borne illness. Nevertheless, adoption among the global poor is very low, and little evidence exists on why. Methods: We gave 600 households in poor communities in Dhaka, Bangladesh randomly-ordered two-month free trials of four water treatment products: dilute liquid chlorine (sodium hypochlorite solution, marketed locally as Water Guard), sodium dichloroisocyanurate tablets (branded as Aquatabs), a combined flocculant-disinfectant powdered mixture (the PUR Purifier of Water), and a silver-coated ceramic siphon filter. Consumers also received education on the dangers of untreated drinking water. We measured which products consumers used with self-reports, observation (for the filter), and chlorine tests (for the other products). We also measured drinking water's contamination with E. coli (compared to 200 control households). Findings: Households reported highest usage of the filter, although no product had even 30% usage. E. coli concentrations in stored drinking water were generally lowest when households had Water Guard. Households that self-reported product usage had large reductions in E. coli concentrations with any product as compared to controls. Conclusion: Traditional arguments for the low adoption of POU products focus on affordability, consumers' lack of information about germs and the dangers of unsafe water, and specific products not meshing with a household's preferences. In this study we provided free trials, repeated informational messages explaining the dangers of untreated water, and a variety of product designs. The low usage of all products despite such efforts makes clear that important barriers exist beyond cost, information, and variation among these four product designs. Without a better understanding of the choices and aspirations of the target end-users, household-based water treatment is unlikely to reduce morbidity and mortality substantially in urban Bangladesh and similar populations. © 2011 Luoto et al.

Luoto J.,RAND | Mahmud M.,International Center for Diarrheal Disease Research | Mahmud M.,Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies | Albert J.,Aquaya Institute | And 4 more authors.
Environmental Science and Technology | Year: 2012

Low-cost point-of-use (POU) safe water products have the potential to reduce waterborne illness, but adoption by the global poor remains low. We performed an eight-month randomized trial of four low-cost household water treatment products in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Intervention households (n = 600) received repeated educational messages about the importance of drinking safe water along with consecutive two-month free trials with each of four POU products in random order. Households randomly assigned to the control group (n = 200) did not receive free products or repeated educational messages. Households' willingness to pay for these products was quite low on average (as measured by bids in an incentive-compatible real-money auction), although a modest share was willing to pay the actual or expected retail price for low-cost chlorine-based products. Furthermore, contrary to our hypotheses that both one's own personal experience and the influence of one's peers would increase consumers' willingness to pay, direct experience significantly decreased mean bids by 18-55% for three of the four products and had no discernible effect on the fourth. Neighbor experience also did not increase bids. Widespread dissemination of safe water products is unlikely until we better understand the preferences and aspirations of these at-risk populations. © 2012 American Chemical Society.

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