Gender and climate change adaptation among bean growing households in Northern and Eastern Uganda
Mubuka, Amina Subira
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Beans are an important legume in Uganda although less adapted to extreme environmental conditions. Adapting the bean crop to the changing climate is one of the best ways to improve bean productivity and smallholder farmers’ food security and incomes. For farmers to adapt, gender equity and equality in agriculture needs to be considered. The study analysed the role of gender and other factors in determining farmer’s choice of climate change adaptation practices. The study was carried out in Lira, Oyam, Sironko and Kapchorwa districts. The results show that farmers have perceived changes in farming seasons, temperature rise, prolonged drought, too little rainfall in a season, too much rainfall in a season, hailstorms, early and late rains that are affecting bean yields. FHH and MHH have shared awareness and perceptions of changes in temperature and precipitation except for changes in farming season. Half of the respondents were aware of climate change adaptation strategies with no significant difference between female and male household heads. Results reveal that adjustment in timing of agronomic practices and proper seed variety selection were the most used ways of minimizing impacts of climate change on the bean crop by both male and female household heads while crop diversification and soil and water conservation practices were the least used. Results from Multivariate Probit Model indicate that factors affecting choice of adaptation strategies among the FHH included inadequacy in input in production decisions, inadequacy in income control, inadequacy in asset ownership, age, number of years of formal schooling, farming experience and belonging to farmer group while factors affecting choice of adaptation practices among MHH included age, land size, farmer group, extension agent contact and access to credit. Gender consideration in climate change studies needs to be considered to get a complete understanding of community perception. Policy should focus on increasing awareness of adaptation strategies and its benefits especially among females. Climate change adaptation policies should consider access to information sources, credit, media, agricultural extension, farmer group belonging, education, farming experience and household head empowerment in different domains in promoting climate change adaptation for males and females.