On-farm Labour Allocation And Water Use In Smallholder Irrigation Systems: Lessons From Africa And Arabia
Free (open access)
W. R. Norman, I. McCann & A. Al-Ghafri
Using experience and specific case studies from sub-Saharan Africa and Southeastern Arabia, this paper addresses fundamental issues of labour allocation for on-farm water management. Farming practices within smallholder irrigation systems are reviewed, with particular reference to the trade-off between farm labour and water. Factors which affect farming decision-making for labour allocation and the qualitative and quantitative effects of these allocations are examined in detail. Based on these findings, the paper concludes by encouraging a better understanding of labour allocation practices for water management, and summarizes considerations for more effective planning, design and management of smallholder systems. Keywords: irrigation, water management, labour, on-farm, water use, water costs, smallholder systems, planning, design, decision-making. 1 Introduction In the world’s arid regions, many countries with developing economies continue to look to agricultural intensification through efficient irrigation technologies and methods as an important part of achieving national economic and nutritional sustainability. Over the years, significant political and financial investments have been made to develop sophisticated, large-scale systems in these regions, although most irrigated production today remains within smallholder systems
irrigation, water management, labour, on-farm, water use, water costs, smallholder systems, planning, design, decision-making.