Rural Human Resources And Relative Poverty

Course ID
Ethiopian Economics Association (EEA)
Tenkir Bonger


Created by The size and the dynamics of a population at a given time and social space has geo-political, economic and social significance. In the context of development studies, it is of vital importance on both the demand and the supply side of sustainable human development to enhance human welfare and expand the frontiers of choice. The notes reported on in this article emerged from two major studies consisting of over 1,000 households in rural Ethiopia and Uganda. While the Ugandan study primarily focussed on structural adjustment and rural poverty, the Ethiopian one compared the management of three small forests by the state, the community and the private sector for sustainable management of the natural resources and the environment. Both contained data on the demographic profile of the rural communities on which the notes hereunder are based on. The analytical categories, in both the Ugandan and the Ethiopian studies, have very similar consumer labour ratio [CU/LU] suggesting an across the board balancing decision between the level of consumers and potential labour providers in the household economy. At the micro-level, there is a positive relationship between family size, acreage cultivated and socio-economic status. When the size of holdings are adjusted for consumer and labour units, that is when the holding sizes are divided by consumer labour ratio, however, the differences in holdings between the different analytical categories in both Ethiopia and Uganda disappear. Taking the size of holdings as a proxy for output, family size expressed in labour unit is the independent variable. This suggests decisions by farm households balancing the size of consumers, workers and holding. Given the state of technology, high mortality rates on the one hand and constricted labour supply [partly of the very low participation of male labour in Uganda and migration in the study area in Ethiopia] in the supposedly ‘labour surplus’ economies, peasants households appear to make rational decisions about the size of their families. Coupled with significant levels of awareness, some applications of family planning and expanding educational opportunities in both Uganda and Ethiopia, the studies suggest a potentially feasible social foundation towards family planning. Policies to raise per capita incomes and the level of living in general could obtain better rates of return in the generation and dissemination adaptable and adoptable farm technologies, price stabilization and expanding the infrastructure base.

Corporate Author: Getnet Alemu and Getachew Yoseph (Editor) & Ethiopian Economic Association/Ethiopian Economic Policy Research Institute
Publisher: Ethiopian Economic Association (EEA)
ISBN/ISSN: 978-9994-54-03-7
Primary Descriptors:

Human resources

Secondary Descriptor:

Human Capital

Geographic Descriptors: Ethiopia
Cataloge Date: 02/27/2013
Broad Subject heading: Poverty
Call Number: 330.963 PRO 2007
Serial Key Title: Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on the Ethiopian Economy
Publication catagory: International Conference
Content type: EEA Publication
Volume: II
Publication date: 2013-05-27 00:00:00
Forum or Discussion date: 2013-02-27 00:00:00
PDF file:  Tenkir Bonger_ Rural Human resources and relative poverty.pdf
Place of publication: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Type of material: Book
Current frequency: Annualy
Author: Tenkir Bonger