Vulnerability and Livelihood Influences of Urban Agriculture and Fruit and Vegetable Value Chains in Lebanon

Title: Vulnerability and Livelihood Influences of Urban Agriculture and Fruit and Vegetable Value Chains in Lebanon
Authors: Fournier, Antoine
Date: 2019-09-27
Abstract: Agriculturalists in Lebanon are exposed to a wide range of vulnerability factors that have direct impacts on farmers’ livelihoods. To evaluate the effects of those factors and the livelihood challenges they breed, this research analyses how two agricultural activities shape farmer livelihood vulnerability, namely urban agriculture and fruit and vegetable value chains. First, I analyze how vulnerability factors influence urban agriculturalist livelihoods and assess if urban agriculture is an adequate solution to lower their livelihood vulnerability. Second, I analyse how various actors partaking in fruit and vegetable value chains are exposed to different vulnerability factors and how this impacts their individual livelihoods. Conceptually, the urban agriculture component of this research builds from the vulnerability framework and sustainable livelihoods approaches scholarships. The agricultural value chain section engages with literatures centered on the vulnerability framework, sustainable livelihoods approaches and value chain analysis. This thesis concludes that the main vulnerability factors associated with urban agriculture relate to physical, financial and human capitals, and that urban agriculture is not an adequate tool to reduce the livelihood vulnerability of urban agriculturalists. I also conclude that social, financial and human capital barriers significantly affect agricultural value chains actors’ livelihoods. Overall, the vulnerability of the different actors is linked to their socioeconomic status, which dictates the amount of human capital they possess, thus their ability to adapt to changing conditions and external stressors. I posit that human capital is key to both urban agriculture and agricultural value chains, as this asset dictates the vulnerability of individual livelihoods and Lebanese agriculturalists’ ability to sustain their livelihoods.
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -