Assessing how livelihoods in rural sub-Saharan Africa might change given future trends in socio-economic and biophysical conditions helps to identify and direct effective efforts towards poverty reduction. Based on existing literature, hypothetical changes in farmer practices and policy interventions were described and used to build five contrasting scenarios towards the year 2027.
The large diversity of farms and farming systems in sub-Saharan Africa calls for agricultural improvement options that are adapted to the context in which smallholder farmers operate. The socio-ecological niche concept incorporates the agro-ecological, socio-cultural, economic and institutional dimensions and the multiple levels of this context in order to identify which options fit best. In […]
The World Bank argued that West Africa’s Guinea Savannah zone forms part of “Africa’s Sleeping Giant,” where increases in agricultural production could be an engine of economic growth, through expansion of cultivated land in sparsely populated areas. The district of Bougouni, in southern Mali, falls within this zone. We used multiple data sources including a […]
Options that contribute to sustainable intensification offer an avenue to improve crop yields and farmers’ livelihoods. However, insufficient knowledge on the performance of various options in the context of smallholder farm systems impedes local adaptation and adoption. Therefore, together with farmers in southern Mali we tested a range of options for sustainable intensification including intensification […]
Institutional support for smallholders has been the motor for the expanding cotton production sector in southern Mali since the 1970s. Smallholder farms exhibit diverse resource endowments and little is known on how they benefit from and cope with changes in this institutional support. In this paper we explore farm trajectories during two decades (1994 to […]