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Irrigated Agriculture and Welfare: Panel Data Evidence from Southern Ghana

Abstract

We present results on the drivers and impacts of household adoption of irrigated agriculture technologies on welfare in Southern Ghana. Using a panel data and a doubly robust estimator to account for selection bias, the estimates show statistically significant positive impacts on income, consumption, and proportions of in-transfers, out-transfers and savings with financial institutions. The impacts on the welfare indicators differ based on the adoption of alternative irrigated agriculture technologies. We also identify key factors influencing the adoption including extension visit, farmer based organization, ownership of agricultural land, access to water resources, among other community and household level characteristics. The findings show the importance of information, social capital and networks, and access to infrastructure in the adoption process of irrigation technologies in Southern Ghana. The results suggest that agricultural development, particularly irrigated agriculture technologies can contribute to improvements in the economic status of farm households in Southern Ghana.

Résumé

On étude les motivations qui poussent à l’adoption des technologies en agriculture irriguée par les ménages au sud du Ghana, et les impacts que ceci a sur leur prospérité. Utilisant des données de panel et un estimateur doublement robuste qui tient compte des biais dû à la sélection, les estimations montrent des impacts statistiquement significatifs sur le revenu, la consommation, et la proportion de transferts, de prélèvements, et d’épargnes auprès d’institutions financières. Les impacts sur les indicateurs de prospérité dépendent de quelle technologie en agriculture irriguée est adoptée. Par ailleurs, on identifie aussi les facteurs-clés qui affectent l’adoption des technologies; parmi d’autres caractéristiques ménagères et communautaires, on y signale les visites d’extension et éducation, les organisations d’agriculteurs, la propriété des terres agricoles, l’accès aux ressources hydriques. Les conclusions montrent l’importance de l’information, des réseaux et du capitale sociale, et de l’accès à l’infrastructure, sur le processus d’adoption des technologies d’irrigation au sud du Ghana. Les résultats suggèrent que le développement agricole, en particulier les technologies en agriculture irriguée, peuvent contribuer à améliorer le statut économique des ménages agricoles au sud du Ghana.

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Notes

  1. Previous attempt uses a sub-set of the data containing anthropometrics for children under eight years to model the correlates of irrigation but not different types of irrigation technologies using a panel regressions (refer to Okyere and Usman 2021). Therefore, this study has the added advantage of using the full sample.

  2. This is based on an irrigation development project in Ethiopia (PASIDP) implemented between 2008 and 2015.

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Acknowledgements

Data from the AG-WATSAN Nexus Project undertaken by the Center for Development Research (ZEF), University of Bonn, Germany with funding from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Dr. Hermann Eiselen Doctoral Programme of the Fiat Panis Foundation is duly acknowledged. Charles Yaw Okyere gratefully acknowledges support from Aulo Gelli during the 2020 Journal Mentoring Programme, European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), Bonn, Germany. We are grateful to Muhammed A. Usman, the editor and anonymous reviewers for their comments and suggestions which greatly improved the content of the paper.

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Okyere, C.Y., Ahene-Codjoe, A.A. Irrigated Agriculture and Welfare: Panel Data Evidence from Southern Ghana. Eur J Dev Res 34, 583–610 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1057/s41287-021-00384-2

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Keywords

  • Irrigation
  • Welfare
  • Doubly robust estimator
  • Panel data analysis
  • Ghana