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Rural Livelihoods: Interplay Between Farm Activities, Non-farm Activities and the Resource Base

Marijke H. Kuiper, Gerdien Meijerink () and Derek Eaton ()

No 25442, 2006 Annual Meeting, August 12-18, 2006, Queensland, Australia from International Association of Agricultural Economists

Abstract: A concentration of poor in rural areas has resulted in a research and policy focus on agricultural technologies and (poor) households' impact on soil productivity. But farm households do not live of farming alone, non-farm activities play a principal role even in remote areas. With a unique household-level dataset covering seven regions in Africa and two in Asia we analyze (1) the importance of non-farm income in different geographical zones; (2) the role of geographical factors in determining access to non-farm employment; (3) the role of non-farm income in external input use and soil nitrogen balances. Distinguishing geographical zones based on the distance to urban areas we find the share of non-farm income increasing from 12 percent in the remote areas to 35 percent in peri-urban areas. Geographical location is found to explain a major part of the variation in individual non-farm participation, besides characteristics like education and gender. At household level we find non-farm income not playing a role of significance in explaining external input use, inorganic fertilizer use nor changes in the nitrogen balance. Households thus appear not to invest non-farm income in agriculture. This limits the contribution of non-farm income to reducing widespread soil nutrient depletion witnessed in Africa.

Keywords: Labor; and; Human; Capital (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 19
Date: 2006
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:ags:iaae06:25442

DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.25442

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