Chapter

Creating Material and Moral Incentives to Motivate Workers

Sinan Koont

in Sustainable Urban Agriculture in Cuba

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780813037578
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813042114 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5744/florida/9780813037578.003.0006
Creating Material and Moral Incentives to Motivate Workers

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The stagnation of its economy in the 1980s led Cuba to attempts (perfeccionamente empresarial) to associate workers' incomes more closely to their actual contributions to production. The structure of urban agriculture in Cuba readily allows for this association. Furthermore, the existing price-formation mechanisms, and supply-and-demand conditions, assure (relatively) high incomes for the UA workforce. There also exist “moral” incentives that do not depend on the existence of the socialist “new man” as conceptualized by Che Guevara in the 1960s. Rather, they are structured as awards and recognition given to individuals, collectives, and even entire provinces. The aim is to raise the self-esteem of urban agriculturalists as well as the social esteem they enjoy in the community. GNAU awards “de referencia” and “de ecelencia” status, the latter to individual production units. At the level of central government, the President meets with outstanding urban agriculturalists every December 27.

Keywords: price formation; supply and demand; Che Guevara; moral incentives; de referencia; incomes

Chapter.  6237 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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