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Human Mobility and Climate Change Adaptation in Small-Scale Farming Areas in Eastern Zimbabwe

In: Africa Review
Authors:
Trymore Maganga Saint Mary’s University Canada Halifax, NS

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Cathy Conrad Suso Saint Mary’s University Canada Halifax, NS

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Abstract

This paper examines the role played by human mobility as a climate change adaptation strategy in Zimbabwe’s small-scale farming areas. Livelihoods in Zimbabwe’s small-scale farming areas are mostly agriculture-based and have long suffered from low levels of production. This is largely due to poor agroecological conditions and lack of agricultural investment, including income diversification projects from the central government. Recently, extreme climatic events in these areas have exacerbated food insecurity challenges, prompting many households to relocate. The findings of this study indicate that most households in the small-scale farming regions are resorting to either short- or long-term migration to areas that offer them food security. In these areas, poor households are forced to work on large commercial farms where they are paid in maize grain or trade their products for food to support their families. This paper argues that, if properly used together with other climate change policies promoted in Zimbabwe, human mobility can be an effective climate change adaptation strategy in small-scale farming areas.

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