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Adaptation to social-ecological stressors: a case study with Indian jujube (Ziziphus mauritiana Lam.) growers of north-western India

Anshuman Singh (), Ranjay K. Singh (), Arvind Kumar (), Ashwani Kumar (), Raj Kumar (), Neeraj Kumar (), Parvender Sheoran (), R. K. Yadav () and D. K. Sharma ()
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Anshuman Singh: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Ranjay K. Singh: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Arvind Kumar: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Ashwani Kumar: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Raj Kumar: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Neeraj Kumar: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
Parvender Sheoran: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
R. K. Yadav: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute
D. K. Sharma: ICAR-Central Soil Salinity Research Institute Regional Research Station

Environment, Development and Sustainability: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Theory and Practice of Sustainable Development, 2021, vol. 23, issue 3, No 18, 3265-3288

Abstract: Abstract Indigenous fruit trees, though critical to the local livelihoods in many areas across the world, continue to receive little research and policy attention. In this study, we recorded the perceptions of Indian jujube (ber) growers of Haryana, India, to understand how social-ecological stressors were impacting their livelihoods and how they were responding to the constraints being faced using their own creativity and institutional recommendations. Data were recorded through an exploratory research design combining both quantitative and qualitative approaches. Principal component analysis and variables factor map revealed differential contributions of orchard attributes and adaptive practices to the variability in individual principal components as well as to the cumulative variation. It emerged that despite serious challenges like poor access to the markets, feeble institutional support and the problems of salinity and fresh water scarcity, a large majority (80.0%) of the respondents had moderate to high willingness to continue ber cultivation. Our respondents were almost unanimous that environmentally resilient nature and low input needs make ber an attractive option for the resource-scarce local conditions. We noted, however, that hardy tree nature alone may not be a guarantee to ber groves’ sustainability in the long run and that doable interventions were inevitable to insulate the growers’ livelihoods from risks. Specifically, increased adoption of proven technologies (e.g. mulching, drip irrigation), linking farmers to the markets and organizing them into groups for the pooled use of resources seem absolutely essential to sustain ber-based production systems in face of such challenges.

Keywords: Adaptive practices; Ber; Farmers’ creativity; Fresh water scarcity; Motivational factors; Salinity stress; Stressors (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1007/s10668-020-00717-x

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