Kioko, Eric Mutisya (2012). Poverty and livelihood strategies at Lake Naivasha, Kenya: a case study of Kasarani village. Masters thesis, Universität zu Köln.

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This study investigates livelihood strategies developed to overcome poverty in Kasarani, a recently developed village north of Lake Naivasha in Kenya. Lake Naivasha is a wetland of international importance known for extensive cut flower investments mostly exported to Europe. Kasarani is one of the informal settlements that have emerged around Lake Naivasha owing to employment-driven immigration at the flourishing floriculture and other investments in the area. My interest was to investigate flower workers and other labour migrants, a research area that has received little attention compared to the lake and flower farms. I discuss how global economy-driven wetland conversion creates inequalities in access and use of resources (land, water etc.) between powerful and powerless actors in a common property resource, the ensuing marginalised of groups and livelihood threats. The study investigates and explains coping and response mechanisms to livelihood stress and shocks within social resilience and sustainable livelihoods approaches using data from participant observation, semi-structured interviews and a household survey. Strategies for building social resilience in Kasarani interplay with discernable poor-rich gaps, deprived livelihood assets, challenge-burdened flower farm employment and diversification pitfalls for scores of residents, undermining pursuit of sustainable livelihoods. Limited sources of financial capital and inadequate physical capital as well as asymmetry in resource access and use also cripple pursuit of sustainable livelihoods, leaving social capital, informal institutions and social organizations among the feasible options. The study reveals that diversification is the main strategy for reducing poverty and coping with uncertainties of employment. Migration and diversification have necessitated livelihood multi-locality and networks, whereas little evidence showed temporary out-migration as a response strategy. Cash and commodity flows together with informal arrangements and networks, such as informal credits and sharing are essential responses to livelihood shocks.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters thesis)
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Kioko, Eric Mutisyaekioko1@uni-koeln.deUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Corporate Contributors: Cologne African Studies Centre
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-79732
Series Name at the University of Cologne: Culture and Environment in Africa Series
Volume: 2
Date: 2012
ISSN: 2194-1556
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 4: Außereuropäische Sprachen, Kulturen und Gesellschaften > Institut für Ethnologie
Subjects: Customs, etiquette, folklore
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Kenya, Rural Poverty, Economic Conditions, Social Conditions, MA thesisEnglish
Kenia, ländliche Armut, wirtschaftliche Bedingungen, soziale Bedingungen, MasterarbeitGerman
Date of oral exam: 2012
NameAcademic Title
Bollig, MichaelProf. Dr.
Refereed: Yes


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