Title: The effect of geography and class on livelihoods in South Africa

Authors: Syden Mishi

Addresses: Govan Mbeki Research and Development Centre and Economics Department, University of Fort Hare, East London Campus, 50 Church Street, RSA P. Bag X9083, East London 5201, Republic of South Africa

Abstract: Development discourse is dotted by calls to reduce poverty and inequality, yet little has been done to determine the factors perpetuating such socio-economic ills. This study investigates the effect of geography and economic class on household livelihoods in the case of selected South African rural communities. A survey was conducted with a total of 164 responses being usable, and data were subjected to analysis of covariance as well as to logistic regression. The results show that the further away a household is to an urban centre, the lower the total per capita income (well-being) and the more likely it depends on transfer income despite literature considering farming to be high value livelihood strategy. Wealth as measured through economic class and livestock show that wealthier families have access to more income generating activities. The results have implications on development policies, favouring spatial economic development strategies that seek rural-urban linkages.

Keywords: inequality; multivariate analysis; poverty; rural-city dynamics; spatial development; wellbeing.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEED.2017.086502

International Journal of Education Economics and Development, 2017 Vol.8 No.2/3, pp.87 - 100

Received: 11 Oct 2016
Accepted: 23 Mar 2017

Published online: 23 Aug 2017 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article