Gendered Adaptation and Coping Mechanisms to Climate Variability in Eastern Uganda Rice Farming Systems

  • Thelma Akongo
  • Charity Chonde


This chapter addresses the dynamics and realities of gender-differentiated effects of climate variability on men and women in rice-growing systems in Uganda, based on their capacity to adapt and cope. Findings show that climate variability has reduced yields, cultivable area, and cropping sequence of major crops. Sixty-five percent of the respondents perceived that yields for all the major crops reduced while 25% perceived yield increase as a result of climate variability (p = 0.023 < 0.05). Production of lowland rice variety Super reduced from 2100 kg/hectare in a normal year to 200 kg/hectare in a drought year (p = 0.001 < 0.01) while K5 variety decreased from 2625 kg/hectare to 1750 kg/hectare (p = 0.006 < 0.01). Upland rice variety Kaiso declined from 2375 kg/hectare to 52.5 kg/hectare (p = 0.009 < 0.01). More female respondents reported a decrease in cultivable area for almost all crops, with the exception of cassava, compared to their male counterparts. There were significant differences between the proportions of men and women who perceived decreases in cultivable areas for rice (p = 0.015 < 0.05), maize (p = 0.03 < 0.05), and groundnuts (p = 0.009 < 0.05). The study determines that both men and women are affected by climate variability, becoming poorer with very limited economic, human, and social resources to build resilience to climate change. It further determines that both men and women rely more on coping mechanisms to respond to effects of climate variability, which are more short-term survival strategies compared to long-term adaptation strategies, given the nature of resources at their disposal. The study concludes by proposing appropriate institutional intervention strategies to be integrated into rice commodity development.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thelma Akongo
    • 1
  • Charity Chonde
    • 2
  1. 1.Environment and Social Safeguards Unit, National Agricultural Research OrganisationEntebbeUganda
  2. 2.Extension Department, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural ResourcesLilongweMalawi

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