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Modernisation and farmer-led irrigation development in Africa: A study of state-farmer interactions in Tanzania
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Human Geography.
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

After years of relatively low investment, irrigation development in Africa has been put back on the policy agenda as a way of increasing agricultural productivity. In spite of existing evidence of farmers’ irrigation initiatives across the African continent, current policy prescriptions still revolve around (large-scale) state intervention. Farmers’ irrigation initiatives are generally considered traditional, backward, and unable to contribute to the agrarian transformation that many African nations are after.

This study aims to problematize this narrow notion of farmers’ irrigation initiatives, and explores how underlying ideas of modernity/modernisation influence irrigation policies and interactions between farmers and the state. Focusing on Tanzania, this thesis consists of an introductory chapter and three separate studies.

The first study is a historical analysis of the state’s attitude towards irrigation development and farmers’ irrigation initiatives in Tanzania. It shows how historically, the development narrative of ‘modern’ irrigation as a driver for agricultural transformation has been successful in depoliticizing irrigation interventions and their actual contribution to development.

The second study engages with a case where farmers have developed groundwater irrigation. The study analyses how differentiated access to capital leads to different modes of irrigated agricultural production, and shows the variation between and within farmers’ irrigation initiatives. It also illustrates how an irrigation area that does not conform to the traditional/modern policy dichotomy is invisible to the government.

The third study concerns a farmer-initiated gravity-fed earthen canal system. It shows how the implementation of a demand-driven irrigation development policy model can (inadvertently), through self-disciplining by farmers and a persistent shared modernisation aspiration, turn a scheme initiated and managed by farmers into a government-managed scheme, without actually improving irrigation practices.

Together, these studies show how modernisation thinking has pervaded irrigation development policy and practice in Tanzania, influencing both the state’s and farmers’ actions and attitudes, often to the detriment of farmers’ irrigation initiatives.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Human Geography, Stockholm University , 2018. , p. 72
Series
Meddelanden från Kulturgeografiska institutionen vid Stockholms universitet, ISSN 0585-3508 ; 154
Keywords [en]
irrigation development, modernity, modernisation, farmer-led irrigation development, expert knowledge, Tanzania, sub-Saharan Africa
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Geography with Emphasis on Human Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-155644ISBN: 978-91-7797-224-2 (print)ISBN: 978-91-7797-225-9 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-155644DiVA, id: diva2:1201423
Public defence
2018-06-14, Ahlmannsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
Resilience in East African Landscapes
Funder
EU, FP7, Seventh Framework Programme, 606879
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 1: Manuscript. Paper 2: Manuscript. Paper 3: Manuscript.

Available from: 2018-05-22 Created: 2018-04-25 Last updated: 2018-05-23Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. The continuous quest for concrete and control in African irrigation planning: the case of the lower Moshi area, Tanzania (1935-2018)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The continuous quest for concrete and control in African irrigation planning: the case of the lower Moshi area, Tanzania (1935-2018)
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Geography with Emphasis on Human Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-155633 (URN)
Projects
Resilience in East African Landscapes
Funder
EU, FP7, Seventh Framework Programme, 606879
Available from: 2018-04-25 Created: 2018-04-25 Last updated: 2018-04-27Bibliographically approved
2. Neither modern nor traditional: farmer-led irrigation development in Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Neither modern nor traditional: farmer-led irrigation development in Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Geography with Emphasis on Human Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-155635 (URN)
Projects
Resilience in East African Landscapes
Funder
EU, FP7, Seventh Framework Programme, 606879
Available from: 2018-04-25 Created: 2018-04-25 Last updated: 2018-04-27Bibliographically approved
3. Farmers’ modernisation aspirations and the policy practices of demand-driven irrigation development
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Farmers’ modernisation aspirations and the policy practices of demand-driven irrigation development
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Geography with Emphasis on Human Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-155637 (URN)
Projects
Resilience in East African Landscapes
Funder
EU, FP7, Seventh Framework Programme, 606879
Available from: 2018-04-25 Created: 2018-04-25 Last updated: 2018-04-27Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
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More languages
Output format
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