Consumption Smoothing? Livestock, Insurance and Drought in Rural Burkina Faso

This paper explores the extent of consumption smoothing between 1981 and 1985 in rural Burkina Faso. In particular, we examine the extent to which livestock, grain storage and interhousehold transfers are used to smooth consumption against income risk. The survey coincided with a period of severe drought, so that the results provide direct evidence on the effectiveness of these various insurance mechanisms when they are the most needed. We find evidence of little consumption smoothing. In particular, there is almost no risk sharing, and households rely almost exclusively on self-insurance in the form of adjustments to grain stocks to smooth out consumption. The outcome, however is far from complete smoothing. Hence the main risk-coping strategies, which are hypothesized in the literature (risk sharing and buffer stock), were not effective during the survey period.


Issue Date:
2004
Publication Type:
Working or Discussion Paper
PURL Identifier:
http://purl.umn.edu/28497
Total Pages:
46
JEL Codes:
D91; O16
Series Statement:
Center Discussion Paper No. 898




 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2017-08-24

Fulltext:
Download fulltext
PDF

Rate this document:

Rate this document:
1
2
3
 
(Not yet reviewed)