Open Access Participation in labor-intensive public works program (LIPWP): Effect on staple crop production in southeastern Botswana

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Abstract:

A labor-intensive public works program (LIPWP) aims to improve the income of rural households. One of the common criticisms of the LIPWP is that it is a disincentive for staple crop production. This study, conducted between February and May 2000, examined the association between participation in an LIPWP and staple crop production in southeastern Botswana. Participant households were those with at least one member on a semipermanent LIPWP. A control group was drawn from households that were eligible to participate in the LIPWP. All participants in the LIPWP were included, while non-participant households were randomly selected. A structured questionnaire was administered to 160 control and 153 participant households. The odds of having no staple crop in the control group were 1.8 times (95% CI, 0.98 to 3.54) higher than that of the LIPWP participants (p = .087), while the odds of having no staple crop in a household with a head between 45 and 64 years of age were 2.5 times (95% CI, 1.06 to 5.96) higher than that of a household with a head less than 45 years old (p < .037). Having more than 10 livestock equivalent units reduced the risk of having no harvest by 40% (95% CI, 0.29 to 1.12). The view that participation in the LIPWP results in reduced staple crop production does not seem to be supported by our data.

Keywords: AFRICA; BOTSWANA; HOUSEHOLD FOOD SECURITY; LIVESTOCK ASSET; PUBLIC WORKS PARTICIPATION; STAPLE CROP PRODUCTION

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2002

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  • Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation.

    The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.

    Food and Nutrition Bulletin's 2012 Impact Factor: 2.106

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