Livelihood adaptation to risk: Constraints and opportunities for pastoral development in Ethiopia's Afar region
Development policies in the pastoral areas of Africa assume that pastoralists are poor. Using the Afar pastoralists of Ethiopia as the focus of research this article challenges this depiction of pastoralism by exploring pastoral livelihood goals and traditional strategies for managing risk. Investment in social institutions to minimise the risk of outright destitution, sometimes at the cost of increased poverty, and significant manipulation of local markets enable the Afar to exploit a highly uncertain and marginal environment. Improved development assistance and enhanced targeting of the truly vulnerable within pastoral societies demands an acceptance that pastoral poverty is neither uniform nor universal.
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Volume (Year): 43 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
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