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Nelson Mandela University (2020)

The impact of agricultural infrastructure on rural livelihoods in KwaZulu-Natal

Mankahla, Sipesihle Qukeza

Titre : The impact of agricultural infrastructure on rural livelihoods in KwaZulu-Natal

Auteur : Mankahla, Sipesihle Qukeza

Université de soutenance : Nelson Mandela University

Grade : Master of Science in the Built Environment 2020

Résumé
The purpose of the study was to investigate the impact of agricultural infrastructure on rural livelihoods of kwaZulu-Natal. The main objective of the study is to look into the ways in which rural infrastructure can improve the livelihoods of kwaZulu-Natal farmers. Government programmes such as agri-parks, one household-one hectare and cooperative funding, when implemented according to their objective, can improve the implementation of infrastructure development in rural areas of kwaZulu-Natal. The objectives of the study were achieved by reviewing the literature relevant to the topic. Data was sourced from primary and secondary sources. A qualitative method was used as the qualitative approach has been considered to be the most appropriate method in achieving research objectives. This approach puts emphasis on the meanings and experiences as found in the study of Lincoln and Denzin. This approach best describes events, opinions and views without the use of data in the form of numbers ; rather it provides textual data that gives an insight into the occurrence being studied. The developments in agriculture would not be sustainable without developing the rural areas and addressing the issues of poverty and enhancing investment capacities of the resource-poor farmers. The linkage of infrastructure to positive economic development cannot be denied. Agricultural infrastructure is infrastructure such as irrigation, rural electrification, roads, and markets in close coordination with institutional infrastructure. There is a long list of infrastructure assets that affect rural development. There is basic agricultural infrastructure which forms the foundation for agricultural economic development of rural livelihoods. This infrastructure includes transport networks, access to water and livestock agricultural infrastructure. Thus, the study sought to establish the impact of existing agricultural infrastructure on agricultural economic development and improvement of rural livelihoods in kwaZulu-Natal. The study revealed that the rural farmers in this province were affected and limited by poor road infrastructure and that access to suitable water for irrigation was far from ideal. As a result, the sector is hindered and does not perform to its full potential and this slows economic development and negatively affects rural livelihoods.

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