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    This set of interviews is part of the 'Farmer Empowerment' project that focused on the impact of farmer organizations (FOs) on the socio-economic development of their FO-members. The interviews were conducted within a second field research in order to gather information on specific impact pathways of selected FOs that work to empower respective FO-members.

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    This set of interviews is part of the 'Farmer Empowerment' project that focused on the impact of farmer organizations (FO) on the socio-economic development of their FO-member. The interviews were conducted within a first field research in order to gather information on institutional settings of FOs and to identify empowering approaches and empowering areas of Farmer Organizations.

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    This set of interviews is part of the 'Farmer Empowerment' project that focused on the impact of farmer organizations (FOs) on the socio-economic development of their FO-members. The interviews were conducted within a second field research in order to gather information on specific impact pathways of selected FOs that work to empower respective FO-members.

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    The energy consumption in Ethiopia is based mainly (90%) on the traditional use of biomass for domestic needs, mostly using rudimentary cooking stoves. Against this background, the present study examines the importance of biomass for energy use of rural households and analyzes the long-term energy security. To this end, a farm household model is developed to investigate the association between the use of biomass for energy and food security. The study explores the effects of fuelwood shortages on the livelihood of the people through an examination of the decisions of households on the use of family labour and expenditures on food and energy. For this purpose, the study uses a panel dataset of Ethiopian households. Due to the endogeneity of shadow wages and prices and to selectivity biases a Fixed Effect Two-Stage Least Squares model is used with an “inverse Mills ratios” for wages, and food and energy expenditures. In addition, a Seemingly Unrelated Regression Analysis and Almost Ideal Demand System are used respectively to estimate the allocation of labour to agriculture, fuelwood collection and off-farm activities jointly. Discrete household energy choice decisions are estimated using a multinomial logit model with predicted wages and other determinants. Shadow prices of fuelwood and agricultural fuels were estimated based on their respective shadow wages and per unit labour hours expended in order to procure the respective energy sources. Furthermore, an Ordinary Least Squares and Tobit model were used to estimate the household demand for fuelwood, and charcoal and agricultural fuels respectively. A dynamic long-term model for the energy sector in Ethiopia is used to investigate the development of renewable energy for a cost-effective energy diversification at the national level. Finally, the suitability of institutional arrangements and collective actions for decentralized energy generation for remote communities are evaluated. The regression results show that fuelwood shortage or a decrease in the shadow wage for fuelwood collecting labour have negative effects on the allocation of labour on the agriculture, and a decrease in energy and food per capita expenditure. At the same time higher wages in agriculture have negative effects on the allocation of labour to the collection of fuelwood. An increase in fuelwood shortage was associated with in an increase in labour expended on fuelwood collection. The allocation of labour to the collection of fuelwood has a negative self–reward effect with an increase in shortage of fuelwood. A greater scarcity of fuelwood associated with the increase in purchase of biomass energy. An increase in the opportunity cost of fuelwood is associated with a decline in the use of this fuel with an own-price elasticity of -0.38. These evidences suggest that fuelwood shortage has negative effects on the welfare of households. Agricultural fuels and kerosene are not substitutes for fuelwood, which conforms to results of previous studies. The wealth of households, access to electricity, population density have the expected effect on the use of biomass. The energy use of households conforms to the concept of 'energy stacking' or, multiple fuel utilization'. However, access to modern forms of energy and economic growth play a central role in such a transition. Concerted policies are needed to help to improve the standard of living and the entrepreneurial skills of household. Furthermore, model results indicate that hydro-electric power will dominate the energy mix of the country without intervention in technological progress and innovations to improve efficiency. In the long term, however, it is predicted that droughts affect the reliability of this source of energy and the cost of energy will push up. To cope with these effects of drought in the hydro-electric sector in Ethiopia, Ethiopia needs to invest in the development of renewable energy resources more. This would improve both sustainability and resilience, but also increase production costs. Innovations to improve the technology and the efficiency of obtaining alternative energy, especially solar energy, increase diversity of energy sources, and reduce production costs and shadow prices and resource scarcity. Such innovations are therefore keys to reduce the risk of droughts and to improve the energy security and thus serve as an engine of economic growth. The results of a cost-benefit analysis for the development of biogas suggest that subsidies for large decentralized biogas plants could achieve higher profits than small biogas plants for households. Specific policy measures should improve energy efficiency and substitution and technical performance, tangible incentives such as capital subsidies and feed-in tariffs, ensure the availability of microcredit for the development of renewable energy and include rural households in local, smart grids.

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    This set of interviews is part of the 'Farmer Empowerment' project that focused on the impact of farmer organizations (FOs) on the socio-economic development of their FO-members. The interviews were conducted within a second field research in order to gather information on specific impact pathways of selected FOs that work to empower respective FO-members.

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    The first part of the dissertation deals with the dynamics of assets owned by the household head, his spouse, or jointly by both in response to diverse shocks in rural agricultural households in Bangladesh, one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change. Therefore, a unique and detailed country representing household survey panel data is used, known as ‘Bangladesh Climate Change Adaptation Survey’ of 2010 and 2012. Looking at changes within rather than between households, the research shows that land is owned mostly by men, who are also wealthier than their spouses. By constructing a comprehensive index the overall effect on wealth is investigated, which does not exist in the literature yet. The results suggest that husband’s and wife’s asset holdings respond differently depending on the type of shocks. Weather shocks such as cyclones adversely affect the asset holdings of household heads in general, while predicted external events such as seasonal droughts and dowry payments reduce assets of both spouses. The results suggest that jointly owned assets are not sold in response to shocks; either due to these assets being actively protected or due to the difficulty of agreeing on this coping strategy. Women’s asset holdings and associated choices of substituting assets are shaped by their lesser involvement in agriculture. To know the changes of behavioral patterns in response to these shocks, the results suggest that households are more likely to adopt short-term coping mechanisms in response to non-climatic negative shocks rather than to climatic shocks, whereas households are more likely engage in adaptation strategies in response to the latter. Furthermore, adaptation strategies are often combined complementary efforts, whereas coping mechanisms are mutually independent across the study. In particular, group participation in general is associated with crop adaptation strategies and perceptions of climate change among women. Finally, the research seeks to explore the potential of group based approaches which is receiving a growing attention due to their possible role in securing household welfare in the presence of adverse events. The inherent endogeneity is addressed by using instrumental variables. The results suggest that household heads mainly participate in groups that are welfare augmenting and income enhancing, while their spouses are mainly active in credit groups due to less personal wealth which are more strongly negatively affected by shocks. Furthermore, evidence is found for a positive association of social and political capital with household-level welfare and with asset holdings of the household head. Interestingly, it seems that this effect is not driven by mere participation in groups, but also by other aspects of social capital, for example informal networks, of both household heads and spouses.

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    The ZEF Data Management Policy declares principles and rules for the management of research data generated by scientists working at the Center for Development Research (ZEF), University of Bonn. Based on ZEF's data management goals and principles, the legal framework for the management of rights on data, spanning from intellectual property to privacy protection, is outlined. With reference to the legal framework the individual rights and commitments of ZEF scientists regarding the provision, the re-use and the management of ZEF data are described in detail. Citation and acknowledgment rules are specified as well. The document is available in English and German. 14 pages.

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    Palm oil constitutes approximately one-third of the 130 million tonnes of major vegetable oils and fats consumed annually worldwide. The use of bio-based materials in palm oil production and the potential to achieve a zero-waste production process motivated this study of the potential of the Malaysian palm oil industry participating in sustainable bioeconomy. Thus, assessment of policies on chain upgrading and bioeconomy programme is discussed in this study. In order to assess the productivity and the efficiency of oil palm plantations, field research was conducted in two regions in Malaysia: Johor in Peninsular Malaysia as an example of a long-term production area and Sabah in Borneo, a newly established oil producing site. A gross margin analysis was also conducted within a global value chain framework. The growers were disaggregated into three groups according to scale (smallholders, medium-sized growers, and large estates). In Johor, smallholders earned lower gross margins than large scale growers as a result of the long-term impacts of this industry. However, in Sabah, where the palm oil industry is a relatively recent development, there was an inverse relationship between farm size and income. Thus, a cost benefit analysis (CBA) was applied to evaluate the opportunity and the external costs of producing palm oil. The CBA also considers environmental factors, such as land-use changes, carbon emissions from fertilizers, pesticides, transportation for oil palm fruits, and methane and carbon emissions from extraction mills (which have frequently drawn concerns from critics of palm oil). A 25-year period (the length of a commercial cycle of the palm oil industry) and real interest rate scenarios (1–8 %) were adopted for the analysis. Based on the findings, the most productive plantations under the Federal Land Development Authority (FELDA) scheme, which has been a key institutional actor in the development of the Malaysian palm oil industry, earned a Net Present Value of RM84,980 (US$26,776) per hectare, earning more than the less productive plantations under the same scheme (approximately 293% higher) in 2010. Moreover, the external costs of converting forests to oil palm plantations were higher than that of repurposing existing rubber or cocoa plantations for oil palm plantation (which also stores less carbon). Comparing the two study regions, it was found that the small- and large-scale growers in Johor (the pioneer region of the industry) performed better than their Sabahan counterparts (where the palm oil industry is a more recent development) in terms of net present value (NPV) per hectare. However, this was not the case for medium-sized growers. In addition, the mills in Johor also performed better than those in Sabah in terms of NPV per hectare. To examine policy options that could be adopted to turn the Malaysian palm oil industry into a bioeconomy, two biofuel policies adopted by industrialised countries were reviewed, namely German rapeseed biodiesel and US corn ethanol policy. These international policies could serve as examples for the Malaysian government to improve their policy strategies for the Malaysian palm oil biofuel industry. The mixed experiences of the Malaysian policies for accelerating the development of the palm oil industry can be important lessons for other palm oil producing countries. Keywords: Palm oil, Global value chain, Gross margin, Cost benefit analysis, Science policy

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    This dissertation focuses on the impacts of rural-urban migration on the rural areas in China. It consists of five chapters. The first chapter introduces the research problems and presents the framework for studying three selected impacts of migration. These impacts are on the demographic change of the rural population, human capital investment, and agricultural productivity, and are all respectively discussed in the middle three chapters. The last chapter is a case study of a typical Chinese village with massive rural-urban migration. The second chapter first estimates the scale and age-structure of the rural-urban migrants, and then separates the effects of migration on the rural demography by performing simulations with the Cohort Component Method and using data from China’s latest censuses in 2000 and 2010. In addition, it uses household data to confirm the huge effect of rural-urban migration on the demographic structure. The third chapter develops a theoretical framework to investigate the relationship between migration and education. Empirical research reveals a robustly positive effect of migration on educational attainment among the stayers by proposing a novel instrument of the availability of local train stations to deal with the endogeneity. The fourth chapter sets up a theoretical model to study the impacts of migration on agricultural productivity and empirically employs a Simultaneous Equations Model estimated by two-step-least-square method. Empirical results show that migration of the labor force reduces agricultural productivity and households with migration do not invest more in agriculture unless the land size reaches an optimal level. Migration along with land transfer can improve agricultural productivity. The fifth chapter presents a case study of a Chinese village which is transforming its labor-intensive agriculture into a capital-intensive one based on changes in relative scarcity of production factors triggered by the rural-urban migration. It indicates that migration as an external force has broken equilibrium of the traditional agriculture and leads modern agriculture to take off by inducing capital to substitute for labor in agriculture.

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    Alluvial gold mining generates a vast amount of extractive waste that completely covers the natural soil, destroys riparian ecosystems, and negatively impacts river beds and valleys. Since 2002, a gold mining company has striven to create agroforestry plots in the waste deposits as a post-mining management approach, where agricultural crops and livestock are combined to complement reforestation in the area. This research aims at supporting reclamation of waste deposits by providing a comprehensive understanding of processes to manage the transition of nutrient-poor and acidic deposition sites towards productive agroforestry-based systems. Major components of this research comprise (i) an analysis of environmental and social challenges of the gold mining sector in Colombia, and its potential opportunities to add value to affected communities, (ii) an assessment of management practices and decision-making processes of the farmers working on reclamation areas, (iii) an analysis of the sources of variability of waste deposits from the perspective of soil development and vegetation succession, (iv) an analysis of spatial variability of the physicochemical properties of waste deposits with a spatially explicit management scheme, and (v) an assessment of vegetation recovery in terms of biomass and plant community composition. Farmers who are currently working on areas undergoing reclamation rely mostly on their own local knowledge to respond to the challenges that the heavily disturbed conditions of the area pose to crop establishment. Therefore, increasing their awareness of the inherent heterogeneity of their fields, as well as the interdependencies between management practices and improvement of soil fertility, may increase the productivity of their farms. The analysis of sources of variability of the waste deposits generated by alluvial gold mining revealed that these deposits are primarily influenced by the parent material of the alluvial gold deposits and by the technology used for gold mining (bucket or suction dredges), which define the type of deposit formed (gravel or sand). Waste deposits can provide essential functions for rural areas such as woody biomass production and crop establishment if deposits are managed according to a specific purpose, and crop selection for each deposit is done based on physicochemical and structural soil properties. This finding is echoed by the spatial assessment of vegetation reestablishment through the combination of remote sensing with machine-learning techniques that show a high spatial variability of textural properties and nutrient contents of the deposits. A management approach is proposed with the use of delineated management zones, which can lead to an overall increased productivity by developing strategies suitable to the characteristics of each field and its potential uses.