Though structural changes in the agricultural sector have huge merits for economic development, the public opinion on structural change is quite negative.
One explanation can be found in the fact that structural change does hardly lead to Pareto superior outcomes. I.e., there are also losers. A second concern relates to the issue that structural changes may come along with negative social externalities which might result from more industrialised forms of agriculture. This paper argues that addressing these concerns requires a systems perspective which goes far beyond traditional economic and reductionist perspectives. Conceptual approaches can for instance be found in the research on complex systems as well as in Luhmannian systems theory. Therefore, collaboration across disciplines is essential to develop a better theoretical understanding of structural change.