Informations et ressources scientifiques
sur le développement des zones arides et semi-arides

Accueil du site → Master → Pays Bas → 2021 → The climate adaptive behaviour of smallholder farmers in the Gumera sub-basin, Ethiopia : A socio-hydrological approach

Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) 2021

The climate adaptive behaviour of smallholder farmers in the Gumera sub-basin, Ethiopia : A socio-hydrological approach

Schuurman, Ludo

Titre : The climate adaptive behaviour of smallholder farmers in the Gumera sub-basin, Ethiopia : A socio-hydrological approach

Auteur : Schuurman, Ludo

Université de soutenance : Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

Grade : Master of Science (MS) 2021

Résumé
In Ethiopia, rainfall variability and changes in rainfall patterns, induced by climate change, could increase the frequency and occurrence of floods and droughts. Due to smallholder farmers in the Gumera sub-basin, Ethiopia, mostly relying on rainfed agriculture, climatic changes highly influence the agricultural production with corresponding negative effects on food security and their economic well-being. To reduce their vulnerability to climate variability, the majority of smallholder farmers take up adaptation strategies, whereas a small group of farmers does not have the capacity to adapt. However, the understanding of what factors drive the climate adaptive capacity of farmers and how climate adaptive behaviour influences a farmer’s economic well-being is limited. Therefore, via a bottom-up approach, this study aims to determine what factors drive the climate adaptive capacity of smallholder farmers in the Gumera sub-basin and how they adapt to climate variability. Focus Group Discussions are conducted prior to an individual household survey to obtain local-level knowledge and data on the characteristics of smallholder farmers. Subsequently, this data is used to develop a methodology to incorporate the climate adaptive behaviour of smallholder farmers in socio-hydrological modelling. By implementing a logit model, the (dynamic) adaptive capacity of smallholder farmers is implemented, which provides the opportunity to create a better understanding of why farmers adapt to climate variability and its impact on their economic well-being. From the Focus Group Discussions and the individual household survey it is observed that the majority of farmers adapt to climate variability in case of a bad year, defined as a drought, by changing to a short cycle crop, mostly potato, and adjusting the planting and harvesting dates. The drivers that are found to mainly influence the uptake of these adaptation strategies are farm size, altitude, level of education, the number of livestock owned, capital, experience, access to a weather forecast, and labour availability. A small group of farmers does not take up adaptation strategies instead. First of all, their adaptive capacity is constrained by a lack of land, labour, and a weather forecast. Secondly, the rather optimistic perception of non-adapting farmers towards climate change seems to limit their adaptive capacity. Thirdly, especially the limited use of the onset of rains by non-adapting farmers was observed to negatively influence their climate adaptive capacity. Incorporating the climate adaptive behaviour of smallholder farmers in socio-hydrological modelling by enabling a logit model showed to be a successful approach. Based on the main drivers for the climate adaptive capacity, the model is able to simulate the agricultural practices with respect to climate variability. As such, the model has shown to be able to simulate agricultural practices that better coincide with what is observed during both the Focus Group Discussions and the household survey. In addition, the methodology used to evaluate the long-term effect of climate adaptation on the economic well-being of a farmer has the potential to help in creating a better understanding of why farmers adapt to climate variability.

Présentation Version intégrale (30 Mb)

Page publiée le 23 avril 2021