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Climate 2018, 6(2), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli6020023

Assessing Coping Strategies in Response to Drought: A Micro Level Study in the North-West Region of Bangladesh

1
Department of Agricultural Extension Education, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh 2202, Bangladesh
2
Department of Agribusiness, College of Food and Agriculture, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain 15551, United Arab Emirates
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 October 2017 / Revised: 19 March 2018 / Accepted: 26 March 2018 / Published: 2 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Strategies for Climate Mitigation and Adaptation in Agriculture)
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Abstract

Drought is an extreme and frequent event in the north-west region of Bangladesh and it adversely affects the livelihood of the farming community. Identifying the coping strategies that farmers use in the face of drought is crucial in order to understand how farmers minimize the effects of drought on their production, especially in the face of climatic changes that may impact the occurrence of extreme weather events. The purpose of this study was to assess farmers’ coping strategies for droughts by identifying which strategies are used and the influencing factors. A mixed methods approach using qualitative and quantitative data was employed. Preliminary data were collected using structured interviews and focus group discussions in which the findings were triangulated in order to design a questionnaire. The study respondents were 100 farmers operating in north-west Bangladesh. The findings were analyzed using descriptive statistics, coefficient of correlation, multiple linear and step-wise regressions. The results reveal that the respondents have limited drought coping strategies, even though the region is prone to frequent droughts. Among the fourteen identified drought coping strategies, the use of deep tube wells for irrigation water was the most widely reported and the farmers perceived it as the most important coping strategy. Shallow tube wells closely followed as the second most commonly used coping strategy reported by the respondents. Among the identified coping strategies, the least practiced was the use of treadle pumps. The findings from the study showed that age, education, farm size, annual family income, extension media contact, and organization participation were significantly associated with the choice of coping strategy that the farmers employed. Additionally, farm size, age, and education were identified as influential factors that affected the farmers’ choice of which drought coping strategies to use. The study identified important issues for policy makers engaged with governmental programs that aim to enhance the farmers’ drought coping mechanisms. The methods employed and the results of this study could be usefully applied in other districts of Bangladesh, or other areas of the world suffering from the negative effects of drought on agricultural production. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate change; drought; coping strategies; north-west Bangladesh climate change; drought; coping strategies; north-west Bangladesh
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Mardy, T.; Uddin, M.N.; Sarker, M.A.; Roy, D.; Dunn, E.S. Assessing Coping Strategies in Response to Drought: A Micro Level Study in the North-West Region of Bangladesh. Climate 2018, 6, 23.

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