Future of Pastoralism

Book: Pastoralism and Development: Dynamic Change at the Margins


Pastoralism book cover

This book gives a view of ‘development at the margins’ in the pastoral areas of the Horn of Africa. Edited by Andy Cutley, Jeremy Lind and Ian Scoones, Pastoralism and Development In Africa highlights innovation and entrepreneurialism, cooperation and networking and diverse approaches which are rarely in line with standard development prescriptions. Through 20 detailed empirical chapters, the book highlights diverse pathways of development, going beyond the standard ‘aid’ and ‘disaster’ narratives.


The book is part of the STEPS Centre's Pathways to Sustainability book series.


Pastoralism and Development in Africa: Dynamic Change at the Margins
Earthscan / Routledge, July 2012
Paperback, £24.95 GBP

About the Conference

The Future of Pastoralism Conference was an international conference held in Addis Ababa on 21-23 March 2011.

The future of pastoralism in Africa is uncertain and radical changes are affecting Pastoralist areas in terms of access to resources, options for mobility and opportunities for marketing. These changes bring new possibilities for making pastoralist livelihoods stronger but many questions remain about the sustainability of these changes: Is there opportunity for a productive, vibrant, market-oriented livelihood system or will pastoralist areas remain a backwater of underdevelopment, marginalisation and severe poverty? How can pastoralist ‘drop-outs’ be supported after they leave the livelihood but continue to interact with the livestock sector?

These web pages contain many of the contributions made at the conference. These include

Timelines - Future of Pastoralism

Conference participants developed timelines for specific pastoralist areas where they've worked.


Timelines captured trends (population, markets, rangeland change, climate, water, etc.) as well as events (local leadership change, government change, boundaries, conflict, drought, etc.) and publications of key research or other documents.

Ten timelines were developed and are available to download in pdf format here.

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Day 1 & 2 Summaries

A conference summary  of day and 2  by Amdissa Teshome, FAC Ethiopia.

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In pictures: The future of pastoralists in Africa

guardian "Pastoralists face insecure livelihoods, but depictions of them as victims of forces beyond their control and dependent on handouts fail to tell the whole story, say organisers of the Future of Pastoralism conference."

See a pastoralist photo gallery on The Guardian's Global Development site.


Delegates discuss the future of pastoralism

Video_darkPlenary presentations and delegates reflections on pastoralism's future.

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futureofpastconf8webOver 40 papers were presented across 12 panels during the conference. Find the full listing of plenary presentations, all papers, plus panel abstracts here.

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AU Policy Framework

au_logoIn October 2010, the African Union released a policy framework for pastoralism in Africa. This was confirmed by the Executive Council in January 2011. This framework is an important step forward for pastoral policy in Africa and provides a firm basis for policymaking across member states.

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Conference Outputs

Commentaries on each of the 12 panel sessions were provided by participants and are linked below. There are is also a summary of Day 1 and Day 2.

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Media Coverage

futureofpastconfwebPress release and other media coverage

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FAC Focus on Pastoralism

UoB FAC_logoThe revival of interest in pastoralism and livestock production takes two forms – one a celebration of the ‘pastoral way of life' and the importance of indigenous systems of production and management and another focusing on the market potentials of a ‘livestock revolution'.

The Future Agricultures Consortium recognises the importance of these debates in shaping the future of pastoral production systems and livelihoods in East Africa. Learn more about FAC focus on pastoralism...