Drivers of farm-level adaptation to climate change in Africa: an evaluation by a composite index of potential adoption

S Garcia de Jalon*, A Iglesias, AP Barnes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)
103 Downloads (Pure)


Over recent decades, there has been increasing levels of research dedicated to assess drivers of farm-level uptake of adaptation strategies to climate change. The main purpose of this research being to determine how policy intervention can most effectively increase adoption. This paper aims to synthesise this past research in order to scale up uptake of farm-level adaptation strategies through a composite index of potential adoption in Africa. In doing so, we review the estimated coefficients of econometric regressions in 42 case studies published in peer-review journals to identify the factors that regularly explain adoption. We find that these common factors can be grouped into seven components, that is human capital, financial resources, infrastructure and technology, social interaction and governance, food security, dependence on agriculture and attitudes towards the environment. Using national-level indicators of these seven categories, we develop a composite index to inform potential adoption and test the robustness of the index in an indepth sensitivity analysis. The results show that the highest likelihood of adoption of farmlevel adaptation strategies is in Northern African countries namely Tunisia, Egypt, Algeria and Morocco and in Southern African countries such as South Africa and Botswana. Conversely, they indicate that the lowest likelihood of adoption is situated in nations of the Sahel and Horn of Africa and in nations that have recently experienced conflict. We conclude that adoption is associated predominantly with governance, civil rights, financial resources and education. However, it is not necessarily driven by the magnitude of climate change impacts on agricultural production.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)779 - 798
Number of pages20
JournalMitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change
Issue number5
Publication statusPrint publication - Dec 2014

Bibliographical note



  • Adaptation strategies
  • Adoption
  • Africa
  • Climate change
  • Composite index
  • Farm level


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