in: Food Policy 55 (8), 1-14
In recent decades, many developing countries have moved from taxing their agricultural sector to subsidizing it, a phenomenon referred to as “overshooting”. Using Ghana and Uganda as case study countries, this study aims to contribute to explaining this phenomenon by examining the role of policy beliefs. The study is based on the Advocacy Coalition Framework and relies on discourse analysis as analytical method. In-depth interviews with policy actors in both countries served as empirical basis. A quantitative analysis of the transcripts was used to identify different discourse coalitions, and a qualitative analysis was conducted to examine the discourses and identify their underlying policy beliefs. The paper identified far-reaching differences in the agricultural policy beliefs between domestic policy makers and donors regarding the question: What does it actually take to develop small-holder agriculture? The evidence from this analysis highlights the role that divergent policy beliefs can play in influencing agricultural policy choices.