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"We're in this together": Changing intra-household decision making for more cooperative smallholder farming

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  • Lecoutere, Els
  • Jassogne, Laurence

Abstract

Conceptualising smallholder farming households as collective action institutions, that make interrelated decisions about investment, resource use and allocation in a common household farm, may contribute to understanding widely observed uncooperative outcomes, such as yield gaps, gender gaps in productivity, suboptimal or Pareto inefficient sustainable intensification and climate change adaptation. We examine the relation between participatory intra-household decision making – as a set of ‘rules of the game’ that reduces information and bargaining power asymmetries – and cooperative, i.e. more efficient, sustainable and equitable, outcomes in smallholder coffee farming households in Uganda. We find experimental evidence that participatory decision making is positively related to investments in the common household farm. Consumption behaviour however is not fairer nor more sustainable. Participatory decision making is associated with more cooperative actual outcomes such as greater investment in sustainable intensification, consideration of women’s interests, fairer reproductive intra-household labour division, more balanced control over cash crop income and improved livelihoods.

Suggested Citation

  • Lecoutere, Els & Jassogne, Laurence, 2016. ""We're in this together": Changing intra-household decision making for more cooperative smallholder farming," IOB Working Papers 2016.02, Universiteit Antwerpen, Institute of Development Policy (IOB).
  • Handle: RePEc:iob:wpaper:201602
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    2. Hannah Gichungi & Beatrice Muriithi & Patrick Irungu & Gracious Diiro & John Busienei, 0. "Effect of Technological Innovation on Gender Roles: The Case of Fruit Fly IPM Adoption on Women’s Decision-Making in Mango Production and Marketing in Kenya," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan;European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), vol. 0, pages 1-20.
    3. Alistair Munro, 2018. "Intra†Household Experiments: A Survey," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(1), pages 134-175, February.
    4. Chris Huggins & Alvaro Valverde, 2018. "Information technology approaches to agriculture and nutrition in the developing world: a systems theory analysis of the mNutrition program in Malawi," Food Security: The Science, Sociology and Economics of Food Production and Access to Food, Springer;The International Society for Plant Pathology, vol. 10(1), pages 151-168, February.

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    Keywords

    smallholder farming; intra-household decision making;

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