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Gender, Agricultural Commercialization, and Collective Action in Kenya

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  • Fischer, Elisabeth
  • Qaim, Matin
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    Abstract

    With the commercialization of agriculture, women are increasingly disadvantaged because of persistent gender disparities in access to productive resources. Farmer collective action that intends to improve smallholder access to markets and technology could potentially accelerate this trend. Here, we use survey data of small-scale banana producers in Kenya to investigate the gender implications of recently established farmer groups. Traditionally, banana has been a women’s crop in Kenya. Our results confirm that the groups contribute to increasing male control over banana. While male control over banana revenues does not affect household calorie consumption, it has a negative marginal effect on dietary quality. We demonstrate that the negative gender implications of farmer groups can be avoided when women are group members themselves. In the poorest income segments, group membership even seems to have a positive effect on female-controlled income share. Some policy implications towards gender mainstreaming of farmer collective action are discussed.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by International Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil with number 126659.

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    Date of creation: 2012
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    Handle: RePEc:ags:iaae12:126659

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    Related research

    Keywords: gender; collective action; market access; agricultural technology; household food security and nutrition; Kenya; Consumer/Household Economics; Food Security and Poverty; Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies;

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    1. Cheryl R. Doss & John G. McPeak, 2005. "Are Household Production Decisions Cooperative? Evidence on Pastoral Migration and Milk Sales from Northern Kenya," Working Papers 906, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
    2. Agarwal, Bina, 2000. "Conceptualising Environmental Collective Action: Why Gender Matters," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(3), pages 283-310, May.
    3. Jemimah Njuki & Susan Kaaria & Angeline Chamunorwa & Wanjiku Chiuri, 2011. "Linking Smallholder Farmers to Markets, Gender and Intra-Household Dynamics: Does the Choice of Commodity Matter?," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 23(3), pages 426-443, July.
    4. de Haen, Hartwig & Klasen, Stephan & Qaim, Matin, 2011. "What do we really know? Metrics for food insecurity and undernutrition," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 760-769.
    5. Wiggins, Steve & Kirsten, Johann & Llambí, Luis, 2010. "The Future of Small Farms," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(10), pages 1341-1348, October.
    6. Udry, Christopher, 1996. "Gender, Agricultural Production, and the Theory of the Household," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(5), pages 1010-46, October.
    7. von Braun, Joachim & Webb, Patrick J R, 1989. "The Impact of New Crop Technology on the Agricultural Division of Labor in a West African Setting," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(3), pages 513-34, April.
    8. Ecker, Olivier & Qaim, Matin, 2011. "Analyzing Nutritional Impacts of Policies: An Empirical Study for Malawi," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 412-428, March.
    9. Lauren Pandolfelli & Ruth Meinzen-Dick & Stephan Dohrn, 2008. "Gender and collective action: motivations, effectiveness and impact," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(1), pages 1-11.
    10. Martina Aruna Padmanabhan, 2008. "Collective action in agrobiodiversity management: gendered rules of reputation, trust and reciprocity in Kerala, India," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(1), pages 83-97.
    11. Austin Nichols, 2007. "Causal inference with observational data," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 7(4), pages 507-541, December.
    12. Nassul S. Kabunga & Thomas Dubois & Matin Qaim, 2012. "Yield Effects of Tissue Culture Bananas in Kenya: Accounting for Selection Bias and the Role of Complementary Inputs," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(2), pages 444-464, 06.
    13. Bernard, Tanguy & Spielman, David J., 2009. "Reaching the rural poor through rural producer organizations? A study of agricultural marketing cooperatives in Ethiopia," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 60-69, February.
    14. Doss, Cheryl R., 2001. "Designing Agricultural Technology for African Women Farmers: Lessons from 25 Years of Experience," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(12), pages 2075-2092, December.
    15. Markelova, Helen & Meinzen-Dick, Ruth & Hellin, Jon & Dohrn, Stephan, 2009. "Collective action for smallholder market access," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 1-7, February.
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    Cited by:
    1. Muriithi, Beatrice & Matz, Julia, 2014. "Welfare Effects of Vegetable Commercialization: Evidence from Smallholder Producers in Kenya," Discussion Papers 166029, University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF).
    2. Rao, Elizaphan J.O. & Qaim, Matin, 2013. "Supermarkets and agricultural labor demand in Kenya: A gendered perspective," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 165-176.
    3. Christina Handschuch & Meike Wollni, 2013. "Traditional food crop marketing in Sub-Saharan Africa: Does gender matter?," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 142, Courant Research Centre PEG.
    4. Kabunga, Nassul S. & Dubois, Thomas & Qaim, Matin, 2014. "Impact of tissue culture banana technology on farm household income and food security in Kenya," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 25-34.

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