Land Degradation, Small-Scale Farms’ Development, and Migratory Flows in Chiapas

Case Study: Tapachula

Eche, David M.

kassel university press, ISBN: 978-3-86219-478-0, 2013, 297 Pages
(International Rural Development 4)

URN: urn:nbn:de:0002-34799

Zugl.: Kassel, Univ., Diss. 2013

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Content: This research evaluates the impacts of land degradation on rural development and migration, using a comparative-analysis platform and quantitative and qualitative approaches, based on data from empirical investigations in six rural communities of Tapachula, Chiapas. The results show that deforestation, heavy rains and extreme weather events are the main determinants of land degradation, and that land degradation, smallholder farms’ income and outmigration are highly correlated. In addition, they portray a new migration dynamic, from rural areas in the highlands directly to urban centers in the US, and demonstrate that the poverty marginalization context contributes substantially to global migration flows. Despite the harsh labour conditions and the poor economic basis in the area, temporary Guatemalan workers rapidly replace the out-migrated local labour force on coffee plantations and small farms, giving evidence of their life at the fringe of the globalized economy.

David Eche obtained an Agriculture Engineer degree at the Pontifical University of Ecuador-Ibarra. He pursued a MSc. Programme in International Organic Agriculture at the University of Kassel in Germany. With his research work, he won the prize for the best master thesis of the faculty. Subsequently, he joined a double PhD program offered by the Universidad Autonóma de Zacatecas, and the University of Kassel, wherein he graduated with academic distinctions. His main research interests focus on climate change, environmental degradation, migration, organic agriculture and rural development.

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