, VI Conference of BRICS Initiative of Critical Agrarian Studies

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Addressing land-based livelihood stressors for resilient communities and rural development
Felix Kwabena Donkor

Last modified: 2018-12-14


Natural resources are critical to the livelihoods of vulnerable households and communities with implications for the Leaving No One Behind (LNOB) agenda. Nevertheless, the palpable impact of climate change inter alia has increased competition for such resources and related contestations. Such livelihood stressors affect the success of land-based livelihoods and rural development. This study uses the multi-method approach involving 150 farmers to investigate how uptake of innovation in small holder farmers affects their dependence on land-based livelihood assets, its relation with natural resource conflicts and the implications for food security. The youth are relatively more dependent on land-based livelihood assets as they are unable to afford alternatives compared to older and wealthier farmers. This accounts for the youth being significantly impacted by natural resource-related conflicts related to competing interests for such resources. Furthermore by their culturally assigned role as livestock herders in the community; the youth may be more affected by livestock straying into other people’s farmers which is another source of conflict. Improved communication and negotiation amongst resource user groups will help limit the collision of competing interests which translates into disputes over natural resources.  Moreover the effects of demand-induced and supply-induced scarcity is more pronounced in areas with favourable agricultural conditions and has resulted in increased conflicts in those areas. Education facilitates wealth creation and engenders an enhanced safety net for the relatively well educated.


innovation, small holder systems, food security, climate impacts

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