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The impact of drought on household vulnerability: The case of rural Malawi

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  • Makoka, Donald

Abstract

Vulnerability to poverty in Malawi is highly associated with risk. Households face multiple shocks, most of which threaten their livelihoods and impact negatively on their welfare. Among the important risks that rural households face is drought, which is exacerbated by environmental change. This study analyzes the impact of drought on household’s vulnerability using a two-period panel dataset of 259 rural households in Malawi. In the framework of vulnerability as expected poverty, the study employs the methodology proposed by Christiaensen and Subbarao (2004). The results show that recurrent drought makes households more vulnerable to the extent that households that were affected by drought in both periods were twice as vulnerable as those who experienced drought in only one period. Policies that are aimed at building poor households’ resilience to recurrent drought hold more promise of enabling the households cope with this livelihood-threatening hazard.

Suggested Citation

  • Makoka, Donald, 2008. "The impact of drought on household vulnerability: The case of rural Malawi," MPRA Paper 15399, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:15399
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    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/15399/1/MPRA_paper_15399.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Harold Alderman & John Hoddinott & Bill Kinsey, 2006. "Long term consequences of early childhood malnutrition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(3), pages 450-474, July.
    2. Luc J. Christiaensen & Kalanidhi Subbarao, 2005. "Towards an Understanding of Household Vulnerability in Rural Kenya," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 14(4), pages 520-558, December.
    3. Harold Alderman & Trina Haque, 2007. "Insurance Against Covariate Shocks : The Role of Index-Based Insurance in Social Protection in Low-Income Countries of Africa," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6736, April.
    4. Tesliuc, Emil D. & Lindert, Kathy, 2004. "Risk and vulnerability in Guatemala: a quantitative and qualitative assessment," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 30154, The World Bank.
    5. Harrower, Sarah & Hoddinott, John, 2004. "Consumption soothing and vulnerability in the Zone Lacustre, Mali," FCND briefs 175, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    6. Hoddinott, John & Kinsey, Bill, 2001. " Child Growth in the Time of Drought," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 63(4), pages 409-436, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Renate Hartwig & Michael Grimm, 2009. "An Assessment of the Effects of the 2002 Food Crisis on Children’s Health in Malawi," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 19, Courant Research Centre PEG.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Drought; vulnerability; poverty; rural Malawi;

    JEL classification:

    • B21 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - History of Economic Thought since 1925 - - - Microeconomics

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