Smallholder responses to climate anomalies in rural Uganda
Clark Gray and
World Development, 2019, vol. 115, issue C, 132-144
Recent research suggests that sub-Saharan Africa will be among the regions most affected by the negative social and biophysical ramifications of climate change. Smallholders are expected to respond to rising temperatures and precipitation anomalies through on-farm management strategies and diversification into off-farm activities. However, few studies have empirically examined the relationship between climate anomalies and rural livelihoods. Our research explores the impact of climate anomalies on farmers’ on and off-farm livelihood strategies, considering both annual and decadal climate exposures, the relationship between on and off-farm livelihoods, and the implications of these livelihood strategies for agricultural productivity. To examine these issues, we link gridded climate data to survey data collected in 120 communities from 850 Ugandan households and 2000 agricultural plots in 2003 and 2013. We find that smallholder livelihoods are responsive to climate exposure over both short and long time scales. Droughts decrease agricultural productivity in the short term and reduce individual livelihood diversification in the long term. Smallholders cope with higher temperatures in the short term, but in the long run, farmers struggle to adapt to above-average temperatures, which lower agricultural productivity and reduce opportunities for diversification. On and off-farm livelihood strategies also appear to operate in parallel, rather than by substituting for one another. These observations suggest that new strategies will be necessary if rural smallholders are to successfully adapt to climate change.
Keywords: Rural livelihoods; Climate change; Sub-Saharan Africa; Uganda (search for similar items in EconPapers)
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:115:y:2019:i:c:p:132-144
Access Statistics for this article
World Development is currently edited by O. T. Coomes
More articles in World Development from Elsevier
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Dana Niculescu ().