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close this bookEnvironment, Biodiversity and Agricultural Change in West Africa (UNU, 1997, 141 pages)
close this folderRelated studies
close this folder15: Women, environmental change and economic crisis in Ghana
View the document(introductory text...)
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentBackground to the research: Economic crisis and structural adjustment
View the documentEnvironmental degradation in North-Eastern Ghana
View the documentGender and agricultural systems in North-Eastern Ghana
View the documentThe gender division of labour
View the documentStructural adjustment and its impact on health, nutrition and consumption patterns
View the documentChanges in educational status
View the documentChanges in income-generating activities
View the documentChanges in women's time use
View the documentWomen's time use and seasonality
View the documentConclusion
View the documentReferences

Changes in income-generating activities

SAP policies of retrenchment of workers from the public sector meant increasing unemployment and an influx of retrenched workers into the formal sector at the national level. In Zorse, with only 2 per cent of women engaged in the formal sector, there was very little change in the number of women engaged in an income earning activity between 1984 and 1991. However, there were changes in the types of income generating work over the seven year period, with more women undertaking farming and food processing rather than trading in 1991 (table 15.3).

This may suggest that women are cashing in on the higher prices of crops as a result of SAP policies, as found in a study among women in southern Nigeria (Guyer and Idowu 1991). In Zorse, however, the incentive to move into farming was not the higher producer prices of food crops, since these are produced at a higher cost, but survival. As most women farmers put it, "at least with farming, one's children would not go hungry."