Bonn Macrohistory Webinar– Pablo Martinelli (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid). Title : “Risk management in traditional agriculture: intercropping in Italian wine production”.

Event details

  • Thursday, July 2
  • 4:00 PM
  • Zoom Video Conferencing
“Risk management in traditional agriculture: intercropping in Italian wine production” joint with Giovanni Federico (NYU Abu Dhabi).

This paper investigates the causes of the traditional practice of intercropping – i.e., of scattering vines across fields rather than concentrating them in specialized vineyards. We interpret it as a risk management strategy based on spatial diversification, which entailed transportation costs. We test our model with data for 1930s Italy, where intercropping was widely but unevenly diffused. We show that its adoption was positively related to the pattern of scattered dwellings which dated back to the late Middle Ages and reduced transportation costs to individual plots.