Spatial associations between household and community livelihood capitals in rural territories: An example from the Mahanadi Delta, India

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Abstract

Despite the increasing interest of the Sustainable Livelihood Framework in the field of international development and in academia and the recent call for the use of mixed-methods approach, there has been little analysis that brings together qualitative and quantitative methods over a large geographical extent. Based on findings from participatory rural appraisals during which participants identified the key assets needed to achieve their livelihoods, this paper argues that common-pool resources (community capitals) should be differentiated from private goods (household capitals) as they operate under different dynamics of decision-making and management. We then create quantitative indicators that can be mapped across a large geographical extent by using data derived from national census and satellite sensors. Spatial patterns and differentials in access to livelihood capitals across the case study are examined and the associations that exist between household capitals, between community capitals, and between both are quantified. The results demonstrate that household physical capital is positively associated with household financial and social capitals but negatively associated with household natural capital, supporting the hypothesis that households trade their natural assets to cope with shocks. It is also shown that proximity to main axes of communication increases access to village amenities but decreases access to natural resources, while remoteness increases household human capital but decreases household physical and financial capitals. Such a cross-scale study adds to the understanding of the question of scale regarding rural livelihoods and community development, which could act as a bridge between the implementation of policy programmes (often targeted at the community level) and their expected outcomes (often targeted at the household level).

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APA

Berchoux, T., & Hutton, C. W. (2019). Spatial associations between household and community livelihood capitals in rural territories: An example from the Mahanadi Delta, India. Applied Geography, 103, 98–111. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apgeog.2019.01.002

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