Linkages between agricultural adaptation strategies and food security

Photo credit: CGIAR-CCAFS

Seedlings in farmer Omar’s tree nursery grow nicely in his backyard, waiting to be planted once the rains come. A new data analysis shows which climate-smart interventions are right for which farms in West Africa. Photo: Trees for the Future
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Which types of households are more likely to be food secure?

by Sabine Douxchamps (ILRI) et Patti Kristjanson (ICRAF)

Data analysis reveals that adoption of agriculture adaptation strategies is spreading in West Africa but the benefits from ‘climate-smart’ farm practices vary.

Download article: Linking agricultural adaptation strategies, food security and vulnerability: evidence from West Africa. Douxchamps S et al. (Limited Access)

Authors’ pre-print article is available here (PDF)


A recently published article in Regional Environmental Change analyses data from 600 households in West Africa and reveals much about the linkages between agricultural adaptation strategies and food security.

The team examined and assessed the food security impact of adaptation strategies such as crop diversification, soil and water conservation, the use of improved crop varieties and of fertilizers, as well as the practice of keeping trees and small ruminants on farms.

The research team also looked at the various farm household characteristics and their productivity by asking questions about who is practising what and what the characteristics of the households engaging in various climate-smart practices are.

The findings reveal that although ‘climate-smart’ farming practices do have positive impacts and are starting to spread in West Africa, their benefits are also dependent on land productivity and land size.


Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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