Determinants of Smallholder Farmers’ Livelihood Strategies in Wogera District of Ethiopia


  • Tegegne Derbe Department of Rural Development and Agricultural Extension, College of Agriculture and Rural Transformation, University of Gondar, Ethiopia.


Farm, livelihood, non-farm, off-farm, smallholder farmers


The livelihood of most people in Ethiopia depend on subsistence agriculture whose carrying
capacity has decreased due to rapid population growth rate and farm size reduction. The
smallholder farmers are engaged in off-farm and non-farm diversified livelihood strategies
to improve their food security. However, these farmers could not easily participate in diversified
activities. Hence, this study identified the livelihood strategies adopted by smallholder
farmers and assessed the determinants of their decisions to choose diversified livelihood
strategies in Wogera district. Multistage sampling technique was adopted to systematically
select the 118 households from which to collect data through household survey, field observation
and FGDs. Besides, descriptive statistics, the multivariate logistic regression was
applied for the identification of determinants that helped to choose diversified livelihood
strategies. The data analyzed through STATA revealed that most households have diversified
their livelihood strategies into off and/or non-farm activities to improve their livelihood.
Access to irrigation and credit were positively affected choices of diversified livelihood
strategies. While, being aged, having more farm size and far from the main road hinder the
households to diversify the livelihood strategies. The study argues that most of smallholder
farmers tend to diversify their livelihood strategies although various factors influence the diversification
of livelihood strategies. Thus, researchers, governmental and non-governmental
institutions should pay attention beyond the farm’s activities to strengthen the off-farm
and non-farm activities to improve the livelihood of smallholder farmers.