Die Bodenkultur - Journal for Land Management, Food and Environment


The impact of size on growth and survival First results for the Upper Austrian farm sector


A cross-sectional time series of more than 50.000 farm households in Upper Austria is used to investigate farm survival and growth for the period 1980 to 1990. In particular, we test a simple stochastic model ("Gibrat's Law") which assumes that farm growth is determined randomly and is independent of initial farm size. Our results suggest rejection of Gibrat's Law. We find evidence for the existence of two separate "centres of attrition" of farm size which would imply a bi-modal distribution of farm sizes to evolve over time.

Key-words: Farm size, growth and survival, Gibrat's Law, bi-modal distribution, Upper Austrian farms.