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Local Institutions, External Interventions, and Adaptations to Climate Variability in Mali

The case of southern Mali

This research examines the role of local institutions in mediating the adaptive practices developed by individuals and collectives in the cotton-growing region of Mali. In this area, the main climate risk is erratic and inadequate rainfall, compounded by difficulties related to guaranteeing a sufficient income from cotton and cereal farming from increasingly infertile soils. The following key questions guided the fieldwork:

  1. What role do local social institutions have in long-term adaptation to environmental change?
  2. How have extra-local actors interacted with local social institutions in development and adaptation efforts?
  3. How is the production and use of weather and climate information organized?

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