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Rural Off-Farm Employment and its Effects on Adoption of Labor Intensive Soil Conserving Measures in Tanzania

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John Kedi Mduma

This study analyzes two related aspects: households’ participation in off-farm employment as a livelihood strategy and the effects of participation in off-farm employment on households’ adoption of labor intensive soil conserving technologies. Several factors are significant but spatial econometric analysis reveals that model parameters vary substantially across space. In addition, households supplying labor off-farm are generally associated with reduced adoption of terraces, hedgerows and cut-offs. The negative impact of supplying labor off-farm can be moderately cushioned when households also hire labor to work on the construction or maintenance of soil conserving structures. However, it is shown that hired labor is not a perfect substitute for households’ own labor and does not fully off-set the effect of a household’s off-farm labor supply.
Contents: The Agricultural Sector and Rural Households in Tanzania – Farm Household Model: A Theoretical Framework – Households’ Off-Farm Labor Allocation Decisions – Spatial Analysis of Village Level Labor Markets – Off-Farm Employment and Household’s Decision on Soil Conservation Technologies.