Journal Article


Context-Specific and Project-Induced Risk: Designing Projects for Promoting Resilient Livelihoods

Published on 17 November 2010

Agriculture based projects can rarely operate without having a significant impact on their participants’ exposure to risk. If participant risk is not adequately considered and addressed in a project’s design, there can be negative implications for the project’s outcome.

To avoid this, identifying and establishing mechanisms that will minimise project induced risk is essential during the design process. In this article we examine the importance of risk within agriculture. We explore the context of risk in which the projects locate themselves, and the relationship between farmer specific risk and sustainability of project outcomes.

Drawing on a range of project documents and project immersions, we evaluate the extent to which agricultural interventions are cognisant of risks facing farm households and how the intervention itself changes the risk portfolio of farm households. We argue that understanding the ways in which projects interact and shape context specific risk is critical for future strategising about how to build risk into monitoring and evaluation strategies.


Rachel Sabates-Wheeler

Rural Futures Cluster Lead

Martin Greeley

Research Fellow

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Publication details

published by
Sabates-Wheeler, R., Butters, S. and Greeley, M.
IDS Bulletin, volume 41, issue 6


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