Conference name, dates, place

International Conference on Contemporary Development Issues in Ethiopia, August 16-18, 2001, Kalamazoo, Michigan

Document Type


Presentation Date



Ethiopia is currently facing challenging problems, ranging from those induced by environmental crises to those caused by demographic and socio-economic constraints which adversely affect peoples` production system. The country is generally characterized by extreme poverty, continued and high population growth rate, severe environmental degradation and recurrent drought (Getachew 1995; Markos,1997, NOVIB, 1999). Resulting from these, the performance of agriculture, the sector that makes livelihood for 85% of the country’s population, has been poor over the last few decades, to the extent that the country could not adequately feed its population from domestic production. This has been manifested in the prevailing chronic and transitory food insecurity which have almost become structural phenomena and the way of life for a significant proportion of the population of the country.


The paper is based on the study conducted through research grant provided by the Organization for Social Science Research in Eastern and Southern Africa (OSSREA) and small field research grant obtained from Ethiopian American Foundation (EAF).