Zimbabwe


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Sugar scandals in Zimbabwe’s lowveld
February 4, 2020 / FAC blog
While visiting our research sites in Mkwasine and Hippo Valley in Zimbabwe’s lowveld recently, there was only one topic of conversation among sugar farmers we have been working with in land reform areas: the scandal that has overwhelmed the South African sugar
UK-Africa trade and investment: is it good for development?
January 20, 2020 / FAC blog
Just ten days before Brexit is declared, the UK is hosting a major investment summit, attended by the PM, Boris Johnson and an array of royals. There is much hype about the event (check out, #UKAfricaSummit, #InvestinAfrica, for example), with hopeful, win-win-win rhetoric
Research to impact: stories from Zimbabwe
January 9, 2020 / FAC blog
Over a couple of weeks in December, I visited our long-term field sites in A1 resettlement sites in Masvingo province in Zimbabwe. It is now nearly 20 years since land reform and the beginning of our research engagement across these
Zimbabweland’s festive top 20 for 2019
January 9, 2020 / FAC blog
For readers of the blog who want to catch up, the ‘top 20’ most viewed blogs posted this year are listed below. Many looked at older ones too, and there are now over 370 to choose from. As ever, the
Why is there food insecurity in Zimbabwe?
January 9, 2020 / FAC blog
The food situation in Zimbabwe in 2019 was bad. But what was the cause? Drought was part of the story – you just have to see the dramatic pictures from Victoria Falls to realise something is up. But the food crisis is
APRA Annual Workshop 2019 hosted by CABE
December 19, 2019 / APRA blog FAC blog
The Centre for African Bio-Entrepreneurship (CABE) successfully hosted the APRA Annual Review and Planning Workshop in Naivasha, Kenya from 2-6 December 2019. Members of the three APRA work streams and APRA Consortium, stationed at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS),
What does pro-poor rural development mean for Zimbabwe?
November 28, 2019 / FAC blog
During last year’s election campaign, Tendai Biti from the opposition MDC, characterised the rural areas as ‘reservoirs of poverty’ in need of ‘liquidation’. Such a characterisation of course is a huge generalisation. Any rural policy must take a more differentiated view, and
Water, sanitation and energy supply in Masvingo’s communal areas
November 13, 2019 / FAC blog
When we started our research on the new resettlement areas in the early 2000s, one of the things people frequently said to us was that they were happy about the new land and the opportunities is brought, but found the
Institutions, social relations and rural development in Zimbabwe
November 13, 2019 / FAC blog
Social and political relations are central to land and agricultural production. Unlike in the resettlement areas, where new institutions and relations had to be built following land reform, those in the communal areas draw on longer traditions. Like in the resettlements,
Off-farm work and diversified livelihoods in Zimbabwe’s communal areas
November 3, 2019 / FAC blog
With low agricultural output, off-farm work is an essential complement to agricultural production in Zimbabwe’s communal areas. Working away has always been part and parcel of communal area livelihoods; indeed these were established as ‘labour reserves’ in the colonial era.
Livestock production: the limits of extensive systems in Zimbabwe
October 30, 2019 / FAC blog
As the previous blog described, the communal area sites we have been studying in Masvingo rarely produced sufficient crops to cover even subsistence needs, and then if so only very occasionally, as with the Mwenezi experience in 2016-17. So what about livestock
Agriculture in Masvingo’s communal areas: limited prospects
October 24, 2019 / FAC blog
We investigated agricultural production across our communal area sites throughout Masvingo province during the 2016 and 2017 harvest seasons. These were relatively good rainfall years, with 690 mm recorded in Masvingo town in 2016-17, for instance. Compared to the past
Land and tenure in Zimbabwe’s communal areas: why land reform was needed
October 14, 2019 / FAC blog
Access to land is central to the livelihoods of rural people, but in the communal areas this is highly constrained outside the land-extensive Lowveld site of Mwenezi. Even in dryland Chivi average holdings are only 2.1 hectares, while in Gutu
Are communal areas in Zimbabwe too poor for development?
October 3, 2019 / FAC blog
Communal areas are where the majority of rural people live in Zimbabwe. With an estimated population of 1.1 million households and a land area of 16.4 million hectares, these areas far exceed those allocated land in the resettlements. This blog
South Africa’s land report: Zimbabwe lessons?
September 19, 2019 / FAC blog
South Africa’s land panel finally produced its report at the end of July. At 144 pages it’s an impressive document, making all the right noises. South Africa, like Zimbabwe, left the land issue for too long. 25 years after freedom, at least
APRA-Afrint Public Seminar, IDS
October 16, 2018 / APRA blog News
On 3 October, the Institute of Development Studies hosted a joint event between the APRA and Afrint projects, bringing together researchers from both fields for a public seminar and launch of the Afrint project’s latest publication. The event kicked off