Gender implications of agricultural commercialization in Africa: evidence from farm households in Ethiopia and Nigeria

Agricultural commercialization is often pursued as an important driver of agricultural transformation in low-income countries. However, the implications it can have on gendered outcomes are less understood. While agricultural commercialization creates opportunities to increase income, this may come at the expense of change in women’s decision-making agency and control over resources. Understanding the interactions between agricultural commercialization and gender outcomes is thus critical for policymakers aspiring to achieve agricultural transformation while promoting gender equity and the evidence on the links between the two in the context of Africa is scarce and mixed. Use three rounds of Ethiopia’s and Nigeria’s LSMS-ISA panel data to understand the implications of agricultural commercialization to gendered decision-making on crop harvest use, marketing, revenue control, asset ownership, and intrahousehold budget allocation. Results indicate commercialization is associated with decreases in women’s participation in decision-making related to use of harvest, crop marketing, and control over revenue in Ethiopia, but only on harvest use and control over revenue in Nigeria.