Identify livelihood resilience strategies against drought risk from the point of view of rural households (case study: Dehestan Golmakan, Chenaran county)

Document Type : Original Article


Department of Geography and Rural Planing, Dr. Ali Shariati Faculty of letters and Humanities, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Mashhad, Iran


Nowadays, communities are trying to achieve the conditions that would allow them to quickly return to the pre-crisis situation in the event of a crisis. So, in recent years, the concept of resilience has been taken into account instead of vulnerability. Due to the frequency of occurrence, universality and having many harmful effects, drought has always been one of the main challenges of the country and has caused many problems in the livelihoods of rural households. Accordingly, the present study aimed to provide optimal strategies to enhance the survival of rural households in the face of drought through a general management model based on the prescriptive paradigm.
Material and methods:
A descriptive-analytical research methodology was conducted with a unit of analysis of 96 knowledgeable local people in eight villages exposed to drought in the Golmakan village of Chenaran county in Khorasan Razavi Province. In this study, two strategic planning tools (SWOT and QSPM) were used. In this regard, based on field studies and extensive documentation, 13 strengths and four opportunities were identified as advantages and 12 weaknesses and three threats as limitations for the resilience of rural households exposed to drought. Cronbach's alpha coefficient was 0.89 for the 17 advantages equal to 0.69 for respondents for 17, and for the total questionnaire 0.84 for optimal diagnosis.
Results and discussion:
In the SWOT matrix, the final score was 1.33 points more than the final score of the weaknesses with 0.88, also in the external factors evaluation matrix, the final score of the opportunities was 0.99 higher than the final score of the threats with 0.93, Where the total score of the internal matrix is 2.15 and the total final score of the external matrix is 1.91, the system status is weak in the external environment. In this study, six competitive strategies, four diversity strategies, five review strategies, and seven defensive strategies were presented in order to increase the resilience of rural farmers according to the internal and external matrices. According to the final score of IFE=2.21 and EFE=1.91, in order to increase the resilience of rural households, optimal defensive strategies (minimum-minimum) were identified in the IF matrix. In addition, based on the analysis of the QSPM matrix among the seven defensive strategies, the first and most important strategy was identified as "diversifying the economy of rural areas exposed to drought" with a score of 2.42. Exploratory studies indicated the dependency of livelihoods of the rural area in the agricultural area and the lack of diversity in livelihood and occupational structures of villagers. These increased their vulnerability to external impulses. Therefore, the diversification of rural economies in the face of drought is an indispensable necessity.
Complex and diverse defensive activities in confronting possible and uncertain risks can stabilize household income in order to reduce the vulnerability of households to possible crises over time. Therefore, the best strategy for increasing the livelihoods of rural households is the diversification of the rural economy.


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