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Title: The new philanthropy and smallholder farmers' livelihoods : a case study of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) in the northern region of Ghana
Author: Asuru, Sumaila
ISNI:       0000 0004 7231 6039
Awarding Body: University of Bradford
Current Institution: University of Bradford
Date of Award: 2017
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The new philanthropy is increasingly seen as a panacea and an alternative source of global development finance for rural development, especially in developing countries. The theoretical underpinning of the new philanthropy entails the idea that the private sector, led by philanthropists and civil society organisations in social policy issues can lead to more effective outcomes through partnership. The existing literature on the new philanthropy mainly focuses on its economic or commercial impact. This is particularly the case in the rural parts of Ghana; there has been very little research on the new philanthropy’s impact on the livelihoods of the poorest segments of society. Therefore, this research investigates the impact of new philanthropy on the livelihoods of smallholder farmers in Northern Ghana in order to fill the gap. The study employed ethnographic research, utilising qualitative techniques involving 20 stakeholders in philanthropy and livelihood affairs and 100 smallholder farmers. The research findings suggest that there is a significant relationship between philanthropic sponsored interventions in Ghana and an increase in smallholder farmers’ yields. The few farmers who purchased improved seeds and other agricultural inputs registered significant increases. However, this study identified some bottlenecks inhibiting access to agricultural inputs by smallholder farmers. Majority of smallholder farmers revealed that they could not afford them (seeds, chemical fertilizer and other inputs) despite the subsidies. Furthermore, rainfall variability gives rise to fluctuating food production from one season to another; meanwhile, there is a lack of strategy from philanthropic practitioners to address the variability in rainfall. Through philanthropy, other methods of faming such as irrigation farming agroecology, and permaculture could be exploited to the benefits of smallholder farmers. The outcomes of this study have policy implications for philanthropic practitioners. This study shows that the failure to involve farmers directly in decisions that affect their livelihoods is a major cause of livelihood interventionist programme failures in Ghana. Thus, this study argues that understanding the socioeconomic dynamics in the Northern Region and amongst the farmers should be an important part of policy formulation for philanthropic involvements seeking to improve livelihood of smallholder farmers. Lastly, the study called for a separate policy framework for philanthropy that would have a key objective of mobilising private philanthropic resources to support steady economic growth and sustainable development, dealing directly with recipients.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Government of Ghana
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Poverty reduction ; Livelihoods ; Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) ; Philanthrophy ; Rural development ; Northern Ghana ; Smallholder farmers