Socioekonomiska förhållanden och markanvändning bland småskaliga jordbrukarhushåll i Mara-regionen, Tanzania

Published on June 22, 2012 | Author: Josefine Stonsebro

During two weeks of March me and my fellow student in Geography III, Anna Wengelin, were working in field together with the aid agency Vi-agroforestry in Mara Region. Mara Region is located in northern Tanzania near Lake Victoria (see Figure 1). Vi-agroforestry is called Vi-skogen in Swedish. Together with its sister organization SCC and with the help of funds raised and grants, they work toward improving the lives of small farmers. In Tanzania, the economy is based largely on agriculture and many Tanzanians live in rural areas and thus make their living from small-scale farms. Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world and in 2010 89.9 % of the population lived of almost 2 USD (U.S- dollars) per person per day.
The purpose of this study has been to through interviews and iGis try to explore, understand and explain how socio-economic conditions appear among small farmers, who recently started practicing agroforestry, and how they look at the land and land use. The goal is to provide a basis for follow-up in a few years. The initial phase of the study presents such various factors that might underlie loss of land and as one of several measures I have focused on agroforestry. You could say that agroforestry is an integrated long-term production systems of trees, plants and livestock. I write about agroforestry and all the benefits it brings and I also mention a couple of known risks of this method. I also take a sample from an area in central Tanzania, where a study similar to mine, was conducted in the 1990s.

By the instructive but also psychologically stressful interviews with the very friendly farmers, I have tried to get answers on how geographical differences possibly have changed in the last few years and what the expectations are to start with agroforestry. Together with Anna we have mapped ten farms. Focus has been on the farms and what they look like, both from our own drawn maps as well as interviews at each farm, mostly with the owner of the farm. In addition, I have investigated some of the causes that can be a cause for smallholder farmers to contact Vi-agroforestry. I have also compiled the responses I got from the farmers regarding future goals with agroforestry. Above all, the primary focus seems to be on productive purposes such as for example timber. The responses also reveals that some farmers wants to achieve agroforestry in their own farm because of its protective and supportive functions such as ex. fixation of nitrogen in the soil.
Stonsebro, J. (2012). Socioekonomiska förhållanden och markanvändning bland småskaliga jordbrukarhushåll i Mara-regionen, Tanzania. Bachelor’s Thesis. Dalarna University.
Link to publication (in Swedish)