Re-designing smallholder farming futures for reduced vulnerability to climate change in semi-arid southern Africa
Climate change will impact the productivity of maize-based crop-livestock systems and the food security of smallholders depending on them in semi-arid southern Africa. Earlier results from testing climate change adaptation options showed that incremental improvements in fertilizer application rates, use of adapted maize cultivars or introduction of forage production are insufficient for substantial improvement of smallholder livelihoods (Masikati et al., 2015). In this paper we therefore explored effects of more transformative system re-design on households’ vulnerability to climate change, farm net returns and poverty rates. We tested the hypothesis that packages tailored to specific farm situations are more effective than blanket recommendations.