Project established in 2006 - Finalized in 2011
Biofuel expansion, food security and rural livelihoods
Global processes has led to the rapid acceleration in the buying and leasing of African land on a large scale to protect the energy and food securities of countries in the North and East. What constraints and opportunities do these processes represent for African smallholders, governance of land and water and environmental aspects?
The research project will address processes related to the expansion of biofuel plans and production expansion in Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Ethiopia, in relation to the state’s strategy for rural and agrarian change. Particular emphasis will be on how biofuel investments affect African smallholder production conditions and livelihoods. The research will also ask if there is potential for local energy production to contribute to sustainable local community development.
Rural and agrarian development over time
This theme focuses on the long term perspective of rural and agrarian change. This focus may assist in identifying which development strategies, or elements of them have been constructive over time, and which have been preventing development. This approach will also allow for a better understanding of important features of the state or its different factions and state/smallholder relations.
The objectives are to enhance the understanding of conditions, processes and outcomes of post-independence Tanzanian rural and agrarian development. The theme aims at understanding micro level developments in the light of broader development strategies and models. This could perhaps explain why macro-level growth does not reduce poverty, as in the case of Tanzania. Focus will also be on the World Bank and donors and their interventions in rural and agrarian change, as well as the implications.
A Swedish interdisciplinary research network related to Livelihood Diversification, Land and Natural Resource Governance in sub-Saharan Africa has been established. The first workshop was held in Harare in November 2006, and a second is planned in Uppsala in March 2007.