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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Co-Operation in Risky Environments: Evidence from Southern Ethiopia
Authors:McCarthy, Nancy
Kamara, Abdul B.
Kirk, Michael
Periodical:Journal of African Economies
Geographic term:Ethiopia
Subjects:social networks
natural resource management
land use
agricultural land
agricultural ecology
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Development and Technology
Economics and Trade
External link:http://jae.oxfordjournals.org/content/12/2/236.full.pdf
Abstract:The semi-arid and arid rangelands of sub-Saharan Africa are characterized by high variability and by heavy reliance of herders on access to common resources, predominantly pasture and water. In these systems, the capacity of the community to cooperate over resource management is critical and the effectiveness of management has a direct impact on exploitation rates and land allocation patterns. In this paper, the authors develop a model to capture the impact of climatic variability on capacity to cooperate and on resulting land use and allocation patterns, and apply the model to data collected from communities located on the Borana Plateau in southern Ethiopia. Results indicate that rainfall variability has a negative impact on stock densities, consistent with risk-averse producer behaviour, but has no statistically significant impact on land allocation patterns in this marginal area. Furthermore, cooperation has a direct negative impact on stock densities and land allocated to private pastures. The results support the hypothesis that individual incentives to overgraze and encroach on common pastures can be mitigated in communities with high cooperative capacity. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]