Are Nomadic Pastoralists Non-Rational?

Herskovits[1] showed that cattle were a dominant element among East African pastoralists’ culture and life. Cattle were important in many ways, e.g. as a symbol of wealth, dowry, and in ceremonies. Continue reading “Are Nomadic Pastoralists Non-Rational?”

Nomadic Pastoralism: Importance and Distribution

  1. Livestock is the fastest growing agricultural sector, and in some countries accounts for 80% of GDP.[1]
  2. Grasslands – the basis for livestock production – cover ~70% of the global agricultural area.[2]
  3. More of the land surface of the earth is used for grazing than for any other purposes.[3]
  4. Pastoralism produces 10% of the world’s meat, and supports some 200 million pastoral households who raise nearly 1 billion head of camel, cattle and smaller livestock.[4]
  5. >1 billion people depend on livestock, and 70% of the 880 million rural poor living on less than USD 1 per day are at least partially dependent on livestock.[5]

Continue reading “Nomadic Pastoralism: Importance and Distribution”

Nomadic Pastoralism: A (Tentative) Definition

In the early days, research was all about establishing typologies. So also in the study of nomadic pastoralism, which was concerned with establishing typologies of “pure pastoralists or nomads” where the units of analysis were “ideal types”[1]. Continue reading “Nomadic Pastoralism: A (Tentative) Definition”