Farm-Family Balance Study
A large literature on the household level impacts of commercialization in agriculture in the developing world has identified both positive and negative impacts of transitions to cash cropping on household food security and nutrition. If the new income coming from cash cropping is not well managed, household food security may suffer. The transition to cash crops can also signify a change in the control of household resources: in some contexts, women manage subsistence plots, but men control the cash income from the commercial crops. This shift to increasingly asymmetric control of resources may negatively impact not only gender equity, but household welfare more broadly.
The Farm-Family Balance Study seeks to understand the impacts of increasing women’s participation in cash crop production and sales. The intervention intends to foster this participation by 1) encouraging households to transfer existing sugarcane contracts to a wife or to register new sugarcane blocks in the wife’s name (“Contract Intervention”) and 2) holding “Family Vision Workshops” that will teach spouses how to work together and create a more cooperative household.
At the conclusion of field activities, the evaluation team intends to conduct an impact evaluation using a randomized controlled trial approach, to measure the causal impact of the interventions. The study began with a pilot phase in July 2015, followed by a baseline phase with approximately 2,400 sugarcane outgrower households in mid-2016. In each eligible household, a household survey was administered followed by interviews with the husband and wife. The baseline also included a selection of incentivized decisions designed to provide revealed preference measures of relative bargaining power. Immediately following the baseline, the implementations of the interventions began. The workshops were implemented first, followed by the contract transfer. The two interventions were randomized independently so that the impacts of each intervention can be separately analysed.
Ignosi Research assumed primary responsibility for implementing all field activities for the Pilot, Contract Intervention, & Midline phases of the study. We are also currently in discussions to implement the study endline phase starting in July 2018. Our responsibilities so far have included:
- Project planning and management: budgeting, recruiting, training & supervising field teams, and ensuring adherence to reporting requirements.
- Quantitative and qualitative data collection management: designing survey instruments, electronic survey programming, data cleaning and preliminary analysis, plus designing and conducting focus group discussions and interviews with key project stakeholders.
- Study Coordination: liaising between Principal Investigators at the World bank/IFPRI and local implementing partners at Kakira Sugar Limited and Oxfam; obtaining ethical clearance for the research, plus providing support on the development of research protocols.
- Implementation of study intervention: conducting implementation of the contract transfer intervention and providing feedback and analysis on progress towards attainment of key project deliverables.