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INTD 200 (186)

Development and Livelihoods

5 Pages

International Development
Course Code
INTD 200
Karen Mc Allister

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Development and Livelihoods - What is a peasant? (characteristics of a ‘rural’ household/community) - Peasant decisions (economic principles) - What is a community? - What is a household? - Sustainable livelihood framework - Assets – Access – Activities - Example of livelihood analysis: Bajo fishing people of Sulawesi, Indonesia Characteristics of a ‘Peasant’/Peasant Household - Dominant econ activity = smallholder farming (crops, livestock) - Access to land basis for their livelihood (tenure very imp) - “One foot in the market, the other in subsistence”  partial integration into “imperfect markets” - Imperfect markets: markets not op in fair compet (incomplete info, probs w/transportation…) - Pluri-activity: diversity of activities w/in + b/w households - Cash + in-kind income (what they produce themselves that they otherwise would have needed to buy), farm, off-farm, non-farm income - Unit of production + consumption (both family + enterprise) - Trade-off, what to sell/keep - Family/household labour is defining econ charac (although may hire/sell labour seasonally) - Access to financial capital + ‘capital’ equipment (tractors, agricul inputs) often limited/unreliable (credit/loans through middlemen, merchants, moneylenders) - Marginal/subordinate (surplus production extracted) - If produce crops of market b/c imperfect market, prices may be lower than going market price - Thick social networks (“Moral economy” James Scott) - Webs of mutual assistance as social safety net  Kinship + community networks  Labour exchange networks  Reciprocity + food sharing  Patron-client relations - What is a peasant? - “Peasants are households which derive their livelihoods mainly from agriculture, utilise mainly family labour in farm production, and are characterised by partial engagement in input and output markets which are often imperfect or incomplete” (Ellis 1993: 13) Economic Principles that Govern Peasant Behaviour/Decisions - Efficiency (trade-off b/w diff activities) - What is the best use of limited resources?  Often more labour than capital, therefore use more labour-intensive farming strategies - Ability to substitute things (ex: often substit labour for herbicide to get rid of weeds) - Risk aversion/management: subsistence security vs. high productivity - Drudgery aversion/seasonal labour constraints - Ppl prefer not to work tasks that are annoying/difficult - Times when e/1 planting/harvesting when labour is scarce, other times when lots of labour b/c not as much pressure on production during that season - Desire to improve well-being/next generation What is a Community? - Rural village/community is not homogenous/uniform - Households divided by social differences:  Class, wealth, ethnicity, access to resources (land), poli power - Demographic differences (dependency ratio) What is a Household? - Conventional understanding: - Household as unit of decision-making, co-resistence, shared food, shared resources - But: - Socially divided (gender, age influ power, decis making, resource access) - Not necessarily “spatially” bound  Kinship/reciprocity bonds beyond “house”  Resource access beyond village (circular migration, international remittances) - Household: “coalition of players committed by choice or custom to act as a unit with respect to the rest of the world” (Ellis) Sustainable Livelihood Framework – AAA: Assets, Access, Activities - Livelihood: “A livelihood comprises the assets, the activities, and the access to these (mediated by social relations) that together determine the living gained by the individual or household” (Ellis) Assets – Five Capitals: - Natural: land, forest, water, trees (anything fr/nature) - Physical: tech, built materials, producer goods (s/thing to invest in), consumer goods - Human: knowledge, health, skills - Financial: money, income, ability to access credit - Social: social networks through which you can rely on Access to Various “Capitals” Mediated Through: - Social relations: social positioning of individs + households w/in society - Influ by gender, caste, age, class, ethnicity - Institutions: formal rules, conventions + informal codes of behav that constrain human behaviour - Laws, land tenure arrangements (property sys), practical op of markets (markets associal space) - Not static, structure vs agency - Organisations: grps of individs bound by s/common purpose - Gov agency, university, NGOs, company, etc. Activities (Livelihood Outcomes) - Portfolio of activities (scale of individ/household) - Natural resource-based (or not) - Farm, off-farm, non-farm - Urban-rural linkages (resources beyond local) - Adaptive to context - Shocks (unpredictable) vs. trends (smaller changes, longer term) - Coping vs. adaption - Various levels of vulnerability/resilience - Substitutability + diversity imp - Dynami
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