Central Data Catalog

Citation Information

Type Working Paper
Title Is African Youth Exiting Agriculture en Masse?
Author(s)
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2016
URL http://jobsanddevelopmentconference.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/CHRISTIAENSEN_Are-African-Youth-E​xiting-Agriculture-en-Masse.pdf
Abstract
This paper investigates the extent of youth engagement in agriculture in six African countries
using unique data from the Living Standards Measurement Surveys-Integrated surveys on
agriculture (LSMS-ISA). We employ both descriptive and regression analysis to compare the
hours worked per week in agriculture by the youth (16-35) and the prime-age group (36-60).
The descriptive analysis suggests that the Nigerian (62.8%), Malawian (23.4%), Tanzanian
(17.8%), Ugandan (16.0%), and Ethiopian (9.9%), youth work less hours per week in
agriculture than the older age groups. In Niger, there is a small difference (0.7%) in hours per
week in agriculture by the two groups. All differences in mean hours worked per week by the
two groups are strongly significant (5% level or higher) except for Niger where there is the
difference in mean hours worked is insignificant. The regression results suggest that age is a
strong correlate of hours worked per week in agriculture in Nigeria, Tanzania, and Malawi
and a weak correlate in Niger and Uganda. The correlation between age and hours worked per
week in agriculture is insignificant in Ethiopia. Other important correlates of hours worked
per week in agriculture include education, gender, rural residence, wealth index, farm size per
capita, land ownership, and livestock ownership. Based on both the descriptive and regression
analyses, we can conclude that there are significant differences between the youth and the
prime-age group involvement in agriculture in Nigeria, Malawi and Uganda. The results also
show that regional differences exists in Nigeria with youth in Southern Nigeria’s youth
engaging strikingly less than their Northern counterparts. The Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition
suggest that in the majority of the countries studied, education and gender explain most the
observed difference in hours worked per week in agriculture between the youth and the
prime-age group.

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