Vol 12, No 2

Table of Contents

Articles

Assessing Household Vulnerability to Climate Variability in Far-West Nepal PDF
Rajendra P. Shrestha, Binaya Pasakhala, Said Qasim
This study analyzed the trends of climatic parameters (temperature and precipitation) over the last three decades (1977-2008) and assessed vulnerability of households to climate variability, i.e., extreme weather events, using two sets of indicators, (1) livelihood assets as indicators of adaptive capacity, and (2) indicators of sensitivity and exposure. The study was carried out in two communities of Kailali district, Nepal, one susceptible to floods and the other to droughts. A vulnerability index, computed from livelihood assets indicators developed in consultation with local people, was used to categorize the surveyed households into three vulnerability groups. Indicators of adaptive capacity and indicators of sensitivity and exposure differed significantly across these groups. The rising trend of extreme rainfall events and drought conditions have increased the vulnerability of agriculture based livelihoods in the study area. Adaptation measures were adopted by households depending on their endowment with key livelihood assets. Annual income, training and land holding size were identified as major adaptive capacity indicators, while distance of households from rivers was the key sensitivity and exposure factor. The findings suggest that programs aimed at facilitating adaptation to climate change and variability have to be integrated with disaster risk management and need to incorporate strategies for improving local livelihoods.

One Belt One Road initiative: A Revolution on Regional and Global Development PDF
Md Saddam Hossain, Md Saddam Hossain
The One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative is a historical landmark which intends to connect more than two-thirds of the world population and opening up the windows for reviving global business, peace and infrastructural development across the countries. The main purpose of this paper is to discuss the OBOR initiative in general and also, to analyze its contribution towards economy and development. The sources of this paper are the published literature, newspaper articles and web information. The paper suggests that though some countries will be benefitted more due to the strategic location advantages, all the member countries will be advantageous if they can use the opportunity with better policy implementation. The authors hope that this paper will be useful for the academicians, policy makers and businessmen who want to study further and implement policies according to the OBOR plan.

Essentials of Indigenous Knowledge towards Sustainability and Development: A Nigerian Experience PDF
Sikiru Adeyemi Ogundokun
That African states confront multi-dimensional challenges is obvious. In recent times, so much has been said about Sustainable development. However, no serious attention has been paid to the issue of solving the problems by tapping from our indigenous knowledge in the schemes of ensuring sustainability and development. This paper, therefore, investigates certain aspects of indigenous knowledge for the purpose of reducing poverty, corrupt practices, crimes and other related social vices. The paper aims at exposing us to native African conceptual skills/knowledge, building good moral, promoting and preserving our cultural heritage and core values, not only for entertainment but also for economic values using indigenous knowledge as a platform. We adopt field study as our methodology and sociological literary theory as our theoretical framework. This theory is applied because it considers the relationship between arts in general and the society, which produced such arts. The study reveals that there is the need to revisit and reinvest in the indigenous knowledge, as foreign cultures cannot guarantee our sustainability as Africans. This paper concludes that individuals, scholars, institutions, corporate organizations and government at various levels have roles to play in making indigenous knowledge a veritable tool for a happy living.

Redefining Benefits and Beneficiaries of Duty and Tax Waiver on Imports of Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Technologies: The Case of Malawi PDF
Arnold Juma, Isaac Chitedze
This paper is about the taxation of solar photovoltaic (PV) technologies in Malawi. It analyses and expose the reality about the benefits and beneficiaries of customs and excise duty waiver on these technologies. The principal aim for taxation is to raise revenue for the government, local authorities and other similar bodies. Taxes are also used to redistribute wealth whereby higher rates of income tax transfer wealth from the better-off to the state and the latter uses the resources to provide services to everyone. Sometimes, taxes are used to protect local industries from foreign competition. In such cases, the government levies duty on imported goods, which translates into higher prices. As a result of the high prices of the imports, people are forced to buy locally manufactured goods as substitutes. However, this analysis appears to be biased towards the end users of the technologies and completely ignores the suppliers, without whom there would be no solar PV market at all. This paper is therefore aimed at highlighting the shortcomings of this perspective and redefining the benefits and beneficiaries of such exemption.

Adaptive Capacity in Watershed Governance for Food Security in the Lower Sio River Basin, Busia County, Kenya PDF
Namenya Daniel Naburi
Watershed systems with high adaptive capacity are able to re-configure themselves when subjected to change without significant declines in crucial socio-ecological functions. This study assessed adaptive capacity variables in watershed governance for sustainable food security at the household level in the Lower Sio River Basin, Busia County, Kenya. A total of 387 households were sampled using a combination of multi-stage and simple random sampling. Questionnaires, interview guides, observation and focus group discussion guides were employed to collect primary data. Results indicate that the need to increase or sustain food production was ranked first by 86.8% as a factor that contributed to public involvement in watershed management activities. The results further revealed that creating social resilience to adapt to a changing climate, and clarifying roles and responsibilities at p-value=0.000; enhancing water-use efficiency and improving management at p-value=0.010 were significant governance aims that determined households’ food security. Watershed governance structures such as water resources, management policies and plans p-value=0.000, and water resource institutions p-value=0.001 were also significant to households' food security status. Therefore, enhancing adaptive capacity of institutions towards watershed governance is a fundamental condition towards households’ food security in the Lower Sio River Basin.

Revisiting the Nexus Between Financial Development, Foreign Direct Investment and Economic Growth of Bangladesh: Evidence from Symmetric and Asymmetric Investigation PDF
Md. Qamruzzaman, Salma Karim, Wei Jianguo
We revisit the nexus between foreign direct investment, financial development, and economic growth of Bangladesh over the 1975-2017 period. By apply Autoregressive distributed lagged (ARDL) advance by Pesaran et al. (2001a) and nonlinear Autoregressive Distributed Lagged (NARDL) initiated by Shin et al. (2014). We also investigate directional causality by employing asymmetry casualty test proposed by Hatemi-j (2012). ARDL bound testing approach confirms the long-run association between economic growth and selected macroeconomic variables. We also observed the nonlinear effects, in the long run, running from financial development, FDI, trade openness, inflation to economic growth. Meanwhile, the results of asymmetry causality confirmed unidirectional causality between positive shocks in financial development and positive shock in economic growth, positive shocks in economic growth and positive shocks in FDI. Furthermore, symmetry causality test confirms bidirectional causality between financial development and economic growth and unidirectional causality running from FDI and inflation to economic growth.

Assessing the Impacts of After-sales Services on the Performance of Household Energy Systems PDF
Jean Paul Sibomana, Isaac Chitedze, Chrispin Gogoda Mbewe
After-sales services play a vital role on the performance of the system and business development. This study sought to assess the impacts of after sales services on performance of households’ energy systems in Rwanda. The study was intended to find out what people currently believe in, the current situation and determine peoples’ perceptions towards after sales services. The research study relied on primary data collected using questionnaires and interview guides. Data gathered from the questionnaires were analysed quantitatively using statistical package for social sciences SPSS version computer software which generated both descriptive and inferential statistics. The findings revealed that after sales services are very important in mitigating possible break down of the households’ energy systems. Households that receive after sales services for their home energy systems experience less frequent break down of their systems compared to those that hardly receive. The research thus, recommends that firms should ensure that ASS is an integral part of product offering to be given the same value as installation process, to adopt a good pricing strategy and monitoring customers’ behaviour to the benefit of both sides.

The Portuguese Energy Sector: Its Multiple Aspects and Challenges - A Country Study PDF
Andre Pinho, Richard J. Hunter
Due to the infusion of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and European Union policies, Portugal is one of the worlds’ leaders in producing clean renewable energy. In the process, Portugal has reduced the use of more traditional forms of energy, such as oil and coal. In addition, Portugal has diversified among types of clean energy it is producing, based on the variety found in Portugal’s geography. Regions suited for massive solar farms are complementary to regions suited to wind farms, making it most efficient to pursue both strategies simultaneously depending on the locus of energy production. As a result, Portugal is currently “ahead of the curve” as one of the largest producers of clean energy in the European Union. This paper addresses the origins of Portugal’s quest for “clean” energy and the diversification of Portugal’s plans to ignite the use of clean energy in the economy.

Research Funding Issues in African Universities: Penalties and Pathways PDF
Udochukwu B. Akuru
Funding challenges, lack or shortage thereof, impede the institutionalisation and development of research e.g., doctoral studies in higher educational institutions (HEIs). In this paper, an appraisal of the state-of-the-art and fallouts arising from the lack of funding for PhD and institutional research in Africa’s HEIs is undertaken, following which the sustainability of existing research funding mechanisms is questioned. Of the fallouts, three issues are prioritised––brain drain, poor research output and depletion of supervisory capacity. In terms of brain drain, it is clear that Africa continues to suffer the loss of its ‘best and brightest brains’ because the research support structure needed to reintegrate or retain them is either weak or non-existent. With the exception of South Africa, a very low research throughput is generally breeding across the region because of unsustainable research funding mechanisms, mainly championed by international funding agencies. Then with a growing number of PhD intakes, the available supervisory capacity is equally being stretched to its limits with no hope in sight, granted that the rate at which the necessary PhD manpower is being produced is non-commensurate. Based on the highlighted fallouts, the overarching redress may lie in the sustainable enterprising and localisation of the huge funding potentials already coming from willing international donors so that it aligns with research problems prioritised by the continent’s political class.



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