Land Expropriation, Peri-urbanization &Income Diversification: Evidence from Peri-urban Tigray, Northern Ethiopia.

The Ethiopia Strategy Support Program and the Ethiopian Development Research Institute invite all interested to a research seminar on 

Land Expropriation, Peri-urbanization and Income Diversification: Evidence from Peri-urban Tigray, Northern Ethiopia.



Tsega G. Mezgebo (Mekelle University)

DATE:          Friday, May 8, 2015

TIME:           11:00 AM

VENUE:       Ethiopian Development Research Institute

ROOM:       Training Room


The rapid urban expansion, a characteristic of many developing countries, is happening by incorporating the nearby rural villages. This changes the consumption and production behaviors of subsistence farm households in the villages. In the presence of missing markets, particularly for labor and land, the rural urban livelihood transition is far from smooth. The objective of this paper is to illustrate this transition using data farm households in peri-urban Tigray, Ethiopia. We use data from two groups of farm households – differentiated by the local authority as urban or rural – to identify factors associated with the farm household’s decision to adopt income diversification strategy. Multinomial logit is applied to identify factors that influence the farm household’s income diversification decision. The results show that agriculture continues as an important source of income although access to farmland is very limited. Combining farm and skilled (rewarding) nonfarm employments is the dominant strategy for the better-off farm households regardless the location they belong too. Location of the household, however, influences income diversification strategies of the farm households in the lowest income quartile (the poorest group). The urban poor participate less in unskilled (low-paying) nonfarm employment compared to the rural. Additionally, labor-poor farm households are marginalized in the nonfarm sector and experience in the nonfarm sector rather than finance is the decisive factor for the farm household to engage in remunerative employment. This has important implications for poverty reduction strategies in general and the land compensation package/urban expansion policy of Ethiopia in particular.