Relational contracts in agriculture: Theory and evidence

Jeffrey D. Michler, Steven Y. Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


We appraise the current status of relational contract theory, along with associated empirical studies, with the goal of providing an orientation to the field to economists who may not have expertise in contract theory. We begin with a theoretical discussion focusing mainly on intuition and the usefulness of the theory for conceptualizing applied agricultural contracting problems. We also discuss current theoretical challenges and the current state of empirical research on relational contracts. We conclude by discussing potentially fruitful areas for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)111-127
Number of pages17
JournalAnnual Review of Resource Economics
StatePublished - Oct 6 2020


  • Agricultural contracts
  • Incentives
  • Relational contracts
  • Repeated games
  • Trust

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics


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