The basic motive power in the growth of agriculture of developed countries is provided by labour-substituting investment, technical progress and, accordingly, by the qualitative change in manpower. Besides, an outstanding role is played by entrepreneurs and management who are capable of adopting technical-technological alterations and mobilising them with a view to improving production efficiency. Technical development is closely related to activities in research and development: likewise, primary roles are attached to human resources, technical training, technical advisory work and to the outlays spent on research and development.
By the end of the eighties it had been increasingly recognised that rapid economic growth and its accepted practice were endangering the human environment, and that, beside material enrichment, they also exercise a negative effect upon the non-material elements of welfare. It is therefore an important task for us to properly interpret the notion of efficiency, to clarify its methods of measurement and to integrate new effects into the system of efficiency indicators.
The aim of the present study is to work out a proposal for utilising farming resources with a new concept and approach looking for the most favourable combination, association and possibility at different levels of farming (enterprises, regional and national economy) and interpreting utility, the production of new value and its accounting in terms of a modern outlook; it is to place on new foundations the ways to measure production efficiency, the possibilities to substitute production factors, the set of criteria of technical-economic progress and thereby to enhance the choices available todecision-makers. As to development in the future, working out a unified assessment system of resources (natural resources, human resources, technical progress and its capital requirements and information as source of production) is of paramount importance, because this is going to create a basis for elaborating a long-term prospect for the future as well as for reasonable decision-making at the levels of enterprises, companies, regional and macroeconomic activities.
The book, which is a summary of the research program entitled ‘Conditions of improving efficiency in the utilisation of agricultural resources’ of NKFP/2004/014, provides a methodological guide to those concerned with these issues and presents the efficiency reserves inherent in agriculture, of which the exploration and utilisation are a prerequisite to preserve and enhance the viability and competitiveness of our agricultural sector.
I recommend the book to specialists, trainers, students, and co-workers in higher management, representative and self-regulatory bodies so that those most interested, including farm entrepreneurs, can study the subject themselves.
full member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences