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The Way we Live: Livelihood Systems in the Sahel AIACC_AF92 Presented at the Africa Regional Workshop, South Africa March 10-13, 2003.

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Presentation on theme: "The Way we Live: Livelihood Systems in the Sahel AIACC_AF92 Presented at the Africa Regional Workshop, South Africa March 10-13, 2003."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Way we Live: Livelihood Systems in the Sahel AIACC_AF92 Presented at the Africa Regional Workshop, South Africa March 10-13, 2003

2 Basic Questions What are the various livelihood systems of the rural people in the Sahel? Who can achieve a sustainable livelihood, and who cannot in the face of climate change? What resources, institutions and strategies are important for enabling the options open to the rural poor in the Sahel to adapt to climate change? What practical, operational and policy implications stem from adopting this approach?

3 Defining Livelihood Livelihoods are the ways people make a living, including how they distribute their productive resources and the types of activities in which they are engaged. The decisions people make about how to organize their livelihoods may incorporate a whole range of goals and values, e.g. an individual’s preference for agricultural work over pastoral work. Some of these goals and values are influenced by cultural norms. Therefore, it is relevant to consider the cultural context of how people in a society structure their livelihoods.

4 Why Livelihood? A livelihoods perspective encourages a broader understanding and examination of factors, institutions and processes that can explain the differing success with which rural households make a living. Consequently, permits a bringing together of more sectoral approaches which tend to focus on a single aspect of rural livelihood systems, to create a more holistic understanding of the options and trade-offs facing different groups in the face of climate change.

5 Methodology Define or Adopt a framework Rapid rural reconnaissance –Identify livelihood systems –Identify stakeholders Participatory rural workshops and data collection Scenario and model development Evaluate adaptation strategies

6 The Sustainable Livelihood Framework (1) Is simply a tool to help: o plan new development/adaptation initiatives o assess the contribution to livelihood sustainability made by existing activities It: o provides a checklist of relevant issues o highlights what influences what o emphasizes the multiple interactions that affect people’s livelihoods

7 The Sustainable Livelihood Framework (2) Helps us think holistically about: o The things that poor rural households might be very vulnerable to o The assets and resources that help them thrive and survive o The policies and institutions that impact on their livelihoods o How they respond to threats of climate change o What sort of adaptation strategies are open to them

8 Livelihood Capital Assets Human Social Physical Financial Natural Vulnerability Context Livelihood Strategies Policies & Institutions Government - Socio-Cultural - Livelihood Outcomes + Sustainable use of NR base + Income + Well-being - Vulnerability + Food security The SL Framework

9 Livelihood Capital Assets Human Social Physical Financial Natural Vulnerability Context Livelihood Strategies Policies & Institutions Government - Socio-Cultural - Livelihood Outcomes + Sustainable use of NR base + Income + Well-being - Vulnerability + Food security The SL Framework Livelihood Systems

10 Reconnaissance Survey Familiarize with project Area Identify candidate project sites Identify logistics that we may need for effective research implementation Identify potential stakeholders

11 Study Region

12 Livelihood Systems Rural livelihood structures in the Sahel are heavily reliant on the natural resource base. Formal –Agriculture –Non-Agricultural Informal –Wildlife –Fuel wood gathering –Tourism?

13 Formal Livelihood Agriculture –Arable farming Rain fed Irrigation/Fadama –Pastoralism Commercial Domestic –Fishing Non-Agriculture –Handicrafts –Small scale manufacturing and processing

14 Agriculture Main stay of Nigeria’s economy, employing over 70% of active labour and accounting for over 90% of non-oil export earnings. Over 90% of agricultural production comes from rural areas.

15 Pastoralism In the Sahel, pastoralism is the dominant livelihood. The Sahel of Nigeria is estimated to support about: –15 million cattle –10 million sheep –18 million goats –All the donkeys in Nigeria, etc Here, nomadic herdsmen graze their livestock and are constantly in search of suitable pasture. Two major pastoral corridors in Nigeria: The Northwest and Northeast. 3 million hectares of wetlands dot these corridors, with an average livestock density of 13/ha, well above the carrying capacity.

16 Livestock in Mali:

17 Pastoralism

18 Fishing A dry river valley in the dry season, a major source of fish in the rainy season Fishing in a pond in Arid Northern Nigeria

19 Informal Sector Utensil makers Mat makers

20 Anticipated Problems Deciding on what livelihood systems to include or exclude Scale of analysis Integrating local knowledge with western scientific knowledge in model specification Coordinating the project across two countries with very different languages


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