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Collective action initiatives to improve marketing performance: Lessons from farmer groups in Tanzania


  • Barham, James
  • Chitemi, Clarence


"The primary inquiry of this study is to identify and understand the underlying factors that enable smallholder farmer groups to improve their market situation. The specific objective of this paper is to examine to what extent certain group characteristics and asset endowments facilitate collective action initiatives to improve group marketing performance. This objective is approached through an evaluation of a government-led program in Tanzania, which is attempting to increase smallholder farmers' incomes and food security through a market-oriented intervention. Findings suggest that more mature groups with strong internal institutions, functioning group activities, and a good asset base of natural capital are more likely to improve their market situation. Gender composition of groups also factors in group marketing performance. It acts as an enabling factor for male-dominated groups and as a disabling factor for female-only groups. Structural social capital in the form of membership in other groups and ties to external service providers, and cognitive social capital in the form of intragroup trust and altruistic behavior are not significant factors in a group's ability to improve its market situation." authors' abstract

Suggested Citation

  • Barham, James & Chitemi, Clarence, 2008. "Collective action initiatives to improve marketing performance: Lessons from farmer groups in Tanzania," CAPRi working papers 74, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:worpps:74

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    7. Kariuki, Gatarwa & Place, Frank, 2005. "Initiatives for rural development through collective action: the case of household participation in group activities in the highlands of Central Kenya," CAPRi working papers 43, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    8. Baland, Jean-Marie & Platteau, Jean-Philippe, 2000. "Halting Degradation of Natural Resources: Is There a Role for Rural Communities?," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198290612, June.
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    10. Garcia, Marito, 1994. "Malnutrition and food insecurity projections, 2020," 2020 vision briefs 6, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
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    13. Resnick, Danielle, 2004. "Smallholder African agriculture," DSGD discussion papers 9, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
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    Cited by:

    1. Quisumbing, Agnes R. & Pandolfelli, Lauren, 2010. "Promising Approaches to Address the Needs of Poor Female Farmers: Resources, Constraints, and Interventions," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 581-592, April.

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    Collective action; Agricultural marketing; Farmer groups; Social capital; Planned change initiatives; Gender; Marketing;

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