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Population Pressure and Dynamics of Household Livelihoods in an Ethiopian Village—An Elaboration of the Boserup-Chayanovian Framework
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Human Geography.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Human Geography.
2006 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The purpose of this study is to analyse the mechanisms and effects of population pressure on rural livelihood system in South central Ethiopia from 1950-2004. In Sub-Sahara Africa population pressure takes two different forms: (1) a pressure on existing household to accommodate a growing number of children (change in household dependency ratio); (2) An increased demand for new livelihood positions in a situation where the total resources available for households may be constrained (change in density ratio). We blended the approaches of Boserup and Chayanov to understand how families make their living when dependency and density ratios change over time. We collected data using a life course and cohort study approaches to capture the dynamics and to compare the past with the present.

We found out that livelihood strategies took different forms when both dependency and density ratios were low and when they were on the increase. When both ratios were low livelihood strategies took the form of agricultural extensification and this was due to the relative availability of land. When both ratios were on the increase, livelihood strategies took the forms of agricultural intensification and diversification.

According to our premises and analysis livelihood strategies are not the results of change in the interest and objectives of production (for instance, market pull/marketing changes and behaviors). The objective of livelihood strategies is to meet basic needs and ensure self-sufficiency and the causes for change are related to a household’s demographic size, composition and access to different levels and combinations of assets.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
UA-AB, Stockholm , 2006. , 85 p.
, ISSN ISSN 0347-9552
National Category
Human Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-21637ISBN: ISSN 0347-9552OAI: diva2:188164
Available from: 2007-11-12 Created: 2007-11-12Bibliographically approved

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Malmberg, BoTegenu, Tsegaye
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