The Impact of Food Assistance on Pastoralist Livelihoods in Humanitarian Crises: An evidence synthesis protocol | Pastoralism | Aids

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This protocol outlines plans for conducting an evidence synthesis on the impact of food aid on pastoralist livelihoods. The distinctiveness of pastoralists – including factors related to the erosion of their livelihood strategies and the difficulty posed by identification of frequently mobile households – and their particular vulnerability to humanitarian crises suggest that the effects of humanitarian interventions targeting them are likely to differ from other populations. The purpose of this review is to use evidence synthesis methods to: systematically identify all available evidence on the impact of food assistance to pastoralist livelihoods (during and after) a humanitarian crisis
  Humanitarian Evidence Programme The impact of food assistance on pastoralist livelihoods in humanitarian crises: An evidence synthesis protocol  The impact of food assistance on pastoralist livelihoods in humanitarian crises: An evidence synthesis protocol 2   Authors Mr Karol Czuba, PhD Candidate, Department of Political Science, University of Toronto (Principal Investigator) Dr Tyler J. O’Neill, Clinician Scientist, Dalla  Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto Funding This is an independent report commissioned by the Humanitarian Evidence Programme, a partnership between Oxfam and Feinstein International Center at Tufts University, and funded by the Department for International Development. This material has been funded by UK aid from the UK Government. However, the views expressed do not necessarily reflect the UK Government’s official policies.   Acknowledgments We would like to thank the Humanitarian Evidence Programme (HEP), Oxfam, Feinstein International Center, and UK Aid for the opportunity and funding to conduct this research. Conflicts of interest The authors are not aware of any conflict of interest, financial or otherwise, that may influence the objectivity of the review. Citation This report should be cited as: Czuba, K. and O’Neill, T.J. (2016),   The impact of food assistance on pastoralist livelihoods in humanitarian crises: an evidence synthesis protocol  . Oxford: Oxfam GB. Picture The pastoralist communities of Turkana, Kenya experience the longest period of drought in their history with their livestock dying, and struggle to feed themselves, reliant on food aid.  Andy Hall for Oxfam. March 2011.  © Copyright  Authors of the systematic reviews protocols on the Oxfam GB website ( publications) hold the copyright for the text of their protocols. Oxfam GB owns the copyright for all material on the website it has developed, including the contents of the databases, manuals, and keywording. Oxfam and authors give permission for users of the site to display and print the contents of the site for their own non-commercial use, providing that the materials are not modified, copyright and other proprietary notices contained in the materials are retained, and the source of the material is cited clearly following the citation details provided. Otherwise users are not permitted to duplicate, reproduce, re-publish, distribute, or store material from this website without express written permission.  The impact of food assistance on pastoralist livelihoods in humanitarian crises: An evidence synthesis protocol 3   CONTENTS 1.   BACKGROUND 4   1.1.   Description of the problem 4   1.2.   Responses to the problem 5   2.   PURPOSE OF THE REVIEW 6   3.   RESEARCH OBJECTIVES 8   4.   DEFINITIONAL AND CONCEPTUAL ISSUES 9   4.1.   Definitions 9   Pastoralism 9   Livelihoods 10   Food assistance 10   Crisis and humanitarian crisis 10   4.2.   Causality 10   5.   SCOPE OF THE REVIEW 12   6.   PICO PARAMETERS 14   6.1.   Population 14   6.2.   Intervention/issues 14   6.3.   Comparator/context 14   6.4.   Outcomes 14   7.   RESEARCH METHODOLOGY 16   8.   SEARCH STRATEGY 17   8.1.   Sources and databases 17   8.2.   Eligibility criteria 18   Round 1: Title and abstract review for relevance 18   Round 2: Full text review for relevance 18   8.3.   Data extraction 19   9.   QUALITY ASSESSMENT 21   10.   SYNTHESIS METHODS 22   11.   EXPECTED CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS 23   12.   APPENDICES 24   APPENDIX 1: SEARCH TERMS 24   APPENDIX 2: PASTORALIST POPULATIONS 25    A. Regional zonation of pastoral systems 25   B. Partial list of pastoralist populations 26   APPENDIX 3: TIMELINE 26   13.   REFERENCES 27    The impact of food assistance on pastoralist livelihoods in humanitarian crises: An evidence synthesis protocol 4   1. BACKGROUND 1.1. DESCRIPTION OF THE PROBLEM Pastoralists are people whose livelihoods depend (not necessarily exclusively) on livestock keeping. They live on all of the world’s inhabited contine nts, primarily in areas where livelihoods based solely on agricultural production are not possible because of aridity, high elevation, or a cold climate. See Section 4 for a more detailed definition of pastoralism and related debates. Such marginal areas are prone to crises such as droughts, while the need to access grazing land has historically contributed to conflict between different pastoralist communities and between them and their agriculturalist neighbours. As a result, pastoralist livelihoods have usually been hazardous and unpredictable. However, pastoralist communities have developed coping and adaptation strategies — often related to their ability to relocate community members and their livestock to areas unaffected by the crisis they faced at a particular time. Such strategies have allowed them to not only moderate the impacts of shocks, but also harness climatic variability to deliver high levels of productivity otherwise impossible in the harsh environments which they inhabit (Butt et al., 2009; Hesse and Pattison, 2013; Morton et al., 2006). Given their successful adaptation to highly variable conditions, pastoralist livelihoods arguably remain uniquely prepared for the increasing environmental unpredictability brought about by climate change (N assef et al., 2009). However, despite their adaptability, pastoralists’ ability to continue their way of life  –  and therefore cope with crises such as conflict and changing environmental conditions  –  has come under increasing strain around the world, a process which continues to this day (e.g. McCabe, 1990; Markakis, 2004). Pastoralists have seen their livelihoods adversely affected by a number of factors. These include pastoralists’ political marginalization, loss of grazing land (given over to nature reserves or agricultural production), restrictions on mobility and other detrimental policies pursued by national governments, the increase of livestock populations caused by disease reduction made possible by advances in veterinary care, disasters (primarily droughts, but also floods, snow disasters and epizootics), and conflict (DFID, n.d.; Markakis, 2004). In East Africa and the Horn in particular, it is claimed that ‘ the material base of pastoralism has been undermined, possibly beyond recovery. Crises have increased in frequency and intensity, and pastoralists are no longer able to overcome them without assistance from outside ’  (Markakis 2004: 4). While such sceptical assessments have been contested (e.g. Hesse and MacGregor, 2006; Nassef et al., 2009; Nori et al., 2008), there is evidence that this process has left pastoralists, in East Africa and the Horn and elsewhere, increasingly vulnerable to crises. This is either because their ability to take advantage of previous coping strategies has deteriorated or because these strategies are no longer adequate for the scale of shocks that they face. Many such crises have affected pastoralist populations, especially in Africa. Although data on the number of affected pastoralists is often unavailable, pastoralists constitute the majority of the affected populations in at least some of the crises. It was the case, for example, during the 2006 drought in the Horn of Africa (ODI, 2006). That drought caused severe shortage of food which affected some 11 million people in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia (FAO, 2006). In Somalia alone, 80 percent of the population is pastoralist (Central Bank of Somalia, n.d.). Famine returned to East Africa and the Horn in 2011 and 2012; in Somalia, where the food crisis was most acute, some 260,000 people died, another 750,000 were affected, and 3.3 million people were in need of immediate life-saving assistance. Altogether, 13 million people were affected by the food security crisis in the Horn of Africa (Maxwell et al., 2014:5). Similarly, 800,000 people  –  including many pastoralists  –  faced extreme food insecurity and another 800,000 were moderately insecure during the 2005 and 2006 Niger food crisis (Aker, 2008:7). While crises have primarily affected African pastoralists, they have also occurred elsewhere. For example, 8,000 Mongolian pastoralists affected by dzud   (harsh winter) received food assistance in 2010 (Action Against Hunger, 2011).
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