Too Much Inequality or Too Little, Inequality and Stagnation in Ethiopian Agriculture

The agricultural sector remains our Achilles heel and source of vulnerability …Nonetheless, were main convinced that agricultural based development remains the only source of hope for Ethiopia. (Prime Minister Meles Zenawi 2000).

A powerful strand of thinking about the causes of long-termagricultural stagnation in Ethiopia defines the problem in terms of inequality. Indeed, it is possible to interpret most Ethiopian agricultural policy initiatives of the past three decades in terms of divergent views on the extent and consequences of rural inequality. This article investigates the hypothesis that (too little rather than too much) inequality has contributed to agriculture’s underperformance, and considers the implications for policy in terms of four alternative pathways for Ethiopian agriculture.

File: IDS_Bulletin-Devereux_Teshome_Sabates-Wheeler-Inequality_Ethiopian_Agriculture-Jun_05.pdf