3.1 BASIC DEFINITIONS
3.2 UNIT OF OBSERVATION
3.3 CHARACTERISTICS TO IDENTIFY FOR ALL HOLDINGS
3.4 DATA TO BE COLLECTED BY TYPE OF HOLDING
FAO's Statistics Division has produced a number of documents covering aspects of the production of agricultural surveys and censuses, among these works are the Programme for the World Census of Agriculture 2000, FAO Statistical Development Series No. 5, Rome; and Conducting Agricultural Censuses and Surveys, FAO Statistical Development Series No. 6. Everybody working in agricultural statistics should consult these two papers. The proposals presented in this and the following chapters are based on these and other FAO documents, as well as on research in the agricultural sector, especially with regard to rural women.
The main objective of the proposals is to avoid the gender bias that commonly emerges when data on women's contribution to agricultural production are being collected. In addition, they address the need to highlight gender differentiation in the roles people play. When these aspects are sidelined, development efforts and policies fail to mirror existing gender disparities in agricultural activities.
Understanding the essential heterogeneity of the agricultural sector is crucial to data collection, especially when a gender perspective is involved. The agricultural sector covers a wide range of occupations, from subsistence workers24 to large agricultural entrepreneurs. Two units of observation need to be examined - the household and the holding.
24 The international status in employment classification (ISCO-93) defines subsistence workers as own-account workers who produce the goods and services that are consumed in their own households and that constitute an economic basis for their livelihoods.
3.1.1 The holding
3.1.2 The holder
3.1.3 The concept of holder from a gender perspective
The analytical unit used in agricultural statistics is the holding, which defines an establishment used for agricultural, livestock or silvicultural production.
An agricultural holding25 is an economic unit of agricultural production under single management and comprises all the livestock kept and all the land used, wholly or partly, for agricultural production purposes, without regard to title, legal form or size. Management may be exercised in the following ways: singly, by an individual or household; jointly, by two or more individuals or households; by a clan or tribe; or by a juridical person such as a corporation, cooperative or government agency.
25 FAO. 1995. Programme for the World Census of Agriculture 2000, p. 28. FAO Statistical Development Series No. 5. Rome.The holding's land may consist of one or more parcels, located in one or more separate areas or in one or more territorial or administrative divisions, providing that they all share such means of production as labour, farm buildings, machinery or draught animals.26
26 Ibid, p. 31.The following additional characteristics, which are important to the measurement of women's work, are needed to identify holdings:27
27 Ibid, p. 28-29.Further clarification is needed of "holdings without land" and "different economic agricultural production units".
1. Holdings may cover an insignificant area of land, e.g. poultry hatcheries or holdings that keep livestock for which land is not an indispensable input for production.
2. Several different economic agricultural production units under the same ownership, or under the same general management, may be considered as separate holdings if they are operated by different persons.
3. There may be more than one holding in a household.
4. Holdings may be jointly operated by two or more individuals.
Gender-sensitive statistics must consider holdings without land. The need for more data, appropriate statistics and reliable statistical indicators on the rural landless has been stressed by FAO in various forums, and was one of the recommendations of the 1991 inter-agency consultation on gender statistics.28
28 FAO. 1992. Report of the Inter-Agency Consultation on Statistics and Data Bases on Gender in Agriculture and Rural Development, 24-26 September 1991. Rome.Although, in the past, agricultural censuses had covered holdings without land, the concept was usually applied only to establishments with high profit potential, such as cattle ranching, in which land was not an essential component of the type of agriculture practised.
A holding with no or very little land can, however, be extremely significant in other types of situations. For example, the case of the poorest farmers, who are poor precisely because they are landless, deserves careful consideration. Another possible scenario, which may become more common in future, concerns farms based on new, high-yielding techniques that require little land, such as hydroponics or vertical nurseries growing mushrooms or other species.
In data on the size of holdings, all units, even those without land, need to be covered in order to construct a complete picture of holding types by size alone, or by correlating size with other variables such as income or work on the holding.
In developing countries, a great many women work holdings with no or only tiny areas of land, rearing livestock or poultry or growing vegetables. This type of holding may also be found in urban areas.29
29 There is no consensus in international recommendations as to what constitutes urban - what is urban in one context may well by rural in another.The concept of different economic agricultural production units is important in the enumeration of women agricultural producers (or heads of holding). There may be more than one holding per household - the basic principle to respect is that the holding is the unit of enumeration. Likewise, all holdings and all data pertaining to them must be considered, regardless of whether the holders are members of the same household. The person or persons who make the major decisions must be listed, and it is essential that women and the role they play in productive activities are not excluded. A typical case is that of a woman who works part-time or on a seasonal basis on her husband's holding and also manages a holding of her own. Both holdings need to be counted, and she should be listed as an unpaid family worker on her husband's holding and as the holder of her own.
An agricultural production unit operated by a woman, even when its general management is in the hands of a man, should be counted as a separate holding and the woman as the holder. The fact that productive and domestic activities tend to overlap can, however, blur this distinction. Even when agricultural operations are carried out by several people, together those people form an economic unit, so it is more practical to treat this as one holding with more than one holder or producer.
Allowing for joint holders, the number of holdings will be less than or equal to the number of holders or producers. Care must be taken to count all those responsible for a unit so as to avoid bias against women.
In entrepreneurial agriculture, one person may have more than one holding. Small units that carry out a range of activities but share all their resources are always counted as a single holding. In agricultural censuses, the holding is the analytical unit, so the fact that one individual is the owner of more than one holding is less significant than the fact that one holding has more than one holder or person responsible for it. All possible combinations of shared holding (one, two or more households to a holding) are discussed in the section on Identification data.
FAO Statistical Development Series Paper 530 defines the holder as "a civil or juridical person who makes major decisions regarding resource use and exercises management control over the agricultural holding operation. The holder has technical and economic responsibility for the holding and may undertake all responsibilities directly, or delegate responsibilities related to day-to-day work management to a hired manager." (p. 26).
30 Op. cit., footnote 25.The same document presents various ways of describing the different types of holders. First they are divided into two categories: private; and government. Under the heading "private" are listed: an individual; a household; two or more individuals from different households, or two or more households; a corporation; a cooperative; and other (any other form of private organization found in the study area). The "government" heading is not subdivided.
It is pointed out that, when two or more members of the same
household jointly operate the same farm, the holder is considered to be the head
of the household (para. 5.17, p. 27) but, as the next section shows, this
indication contradicts other indications given in the same document.
The frequently used term "holder" is not a very appropriate choice from a gender perspective, as it almost always refers to just one male individual. This ambiguity persists even when sex is specified because only one person is listed as the holder, despite the fact that the definition states that more than one person may be responsible for a holding. When only one person is considered, that person is unlikely to be a woman. The situation is even more critical when two or more members of the same household jointly operate the same farm, given the expressly stated instruction that the holder is considered to be the head of the household.
This situation gives rise to several problems. The term "holder" does not take into account the possibility that more than one person may make decisions in the same production unit or that someone who is not even involved in agricultural production may be listed as the holder (which is an even more serious problem). There is also a general tendency to list a man, usually the eldest male, as the head of household, although he is often not the person who makes the actual on-farm decisions.
There is, therefore, an urgent need to find and use a term that reflects the notion of individual or joint responsibility for the holding and that is quite distinct from the more technical term that captures all the persons exercising this responsibility. Obviously, the solution to this will be rather more complex than the form that is used at present, but the problem is not insurmountable, and the biases hindering identification of the persons actually responsible for and most knowledgeable about the holding should be removed. Actions aimed at boosting productivity should be more clearly directed towards these people.31
31 Chapter 2 of this document demonstrates the fact that policy failure can be traced to the failure to take into account the role played by women in agricultural production.In short, the challenge is to answer the question: "Which person (or people) is/are responsible for making the technical and economic decisions for the farm or holding?". The term selected should clearly designate the person or persons who make decisions about the main issues, i.e. what and when to plant, which animals to rear, when to sell and what to invest. The term "HEAD OF HOLDING", although rather more gender-neutral than "holder", still carries an overtone of legal title to the land being held, although the person holding title is not necessarily the person who is actually responsible for operating the holding. Chapter 4 suggests ways of capturing the data at issue here, and it is worth mentioning that the point of the proposed procedure is to avoid automatic classifications on the part of either respondents or enumerators, and to define, clearly, who is responsible for making the basic decisions on the holding.
In some cases the holder hires out part of the daily tasks and responsibilities to a (male or female) manager, but the actual responsibility for the holding is not delegated. In other words, there may or may not be a hired manager, but there will always be one or more physical or moral persons who assume the technical and economic responsibility for the holding.
Some holdings, such as state and private enterprises and cooperatives, imply a hired manager by their very nature. While most of the major decisions of cooperatives are likely to be made at the general assembly, a manager (who may be a cooperative member or someone hired from outside) will take responsibility for the day-to-day decisions. A private establishment may or may not have a manager, but there will always be one or more persons responsible for making the main technical and economic decisions, and these people are traditionally called the "holder" or the "head of holding".
A holding may have more than one holder, so the number of holders is equal to or greater than the number of holdings. The holders must, in all cases, be listed along with their basic characteristics (sex and age, at the very least). For cooperatives, all members should be listed32 and, for households, all persons taking part in decision-making should be. The labour, social and demographic characteristics of all household members present in a small production unit should then be specified. Data about holdings with managers need to specify at least sex, age, ethnic group and education of the person hired.
32 In the case of very large cooperatives with organized membership lists, only sex and age data are necessary, but for small cooperatives without such lists, ethnic group and education level also should be recorded.A clear definition of who "heads" the holding (i.e. who makes the core decisions concerning the holding), particularly on small farms which constitute the majority of production units, would solve many of the problems that arise in collecting gender-sensitive data, including incorporating women's work. Once such information is in place, the data in tabulations and indicators will be sufficiently gender-differentiated. Other problems can be solved by specifying activities by gender (see section on Productive resources).
Data collection in the field requires a prior definition of the units of observation to be used on the analytical unit (which in this case is the holding). The units of observation are identified on the basis of the organization of productive activities, which range between two extremes: the agricultural enterprise, and the small-scale agricultural production unit. Large-scale enterprises can be located through the administrative records of productive units, for example, or through tax records. But smallholdings, which are very closely identified with the daily life of the domestic unit, can usually only be traced through the household.
Recently, much more attention has been paid to small units, in line with a growing interest in identifying women's contribution in agricultural production. In the past, agricultural censuses tended to focus on large-scale commercial agricultural production, where the largest volumes of production are concentrated. Although smaller units were not necessarily excluded, not all pertinent data were collected.
Some agricultural censuses intentionally undercounted the smaller farms, omitting those that were below a certain production threshold. This may make sense in developed countries, where there are only few small units and where family survival is probably not wholly dependent on the farm's output. In developing countries, however, where small farms are largely subsistence farms on which families depend and where much of the population lives in conditions of bare survival, there is reason for setting minimum size limits for agricultural censuses.
Such categories as volume of production, productivity, land area and minimum number of personnel employed can be defined later for specific purposes or special analyses, but small units should not be eliminated, given the importance of their role in the eradication of extreme poverty.
A paradox in the current trend towards economic globalization is the continuing importance of smallholdings in combating food insecurity. In today's dominant policy climate of neo-liberal economics, rising urban unemployment has reduced the number of non-agricultural employment options. Enhancing the productivity of small farms can help to stem the outflow of rural people into the large cities, avoid the accentuation of urban problems and improve the living standards of rural people. Even though developing countries may have less room for manoeuvre, they vitally need to expand their potential for food self-sufficiency, boost productivity and enhance the nutrition status of their populations. Hence the need to know what, how and how much farmers are producing. Planners and policy-makers will then be in a position to promote positive changes in the lives of those who depend on small farms.
Most of the work in these small units is done by women, children and the elderly. Unfortunately, agricultural censuses not only undercount small production units, they also tend to blur the distinction between agricultural production and domestic chores.
3.3.1 Identification data
3.3.2 Productive resources
3.3.4 Purpose of production
The following data should be collected for holdings of all sizes, and the same methodology should be followed in all cases:
· Identification data;
· Productive resources and services - land, water, technology, machinery, tools and equipment, buildings and other structures, financial resources, training and membership in production-related associations;
· Purpose of
Identification data are used to define each holding. An unequivocal way of identifying a holding that is associated with one or more households must be established so that household and holding data can later be correlated.
The geographical position of the holding is part of its identification. Each holding is assigned a specific reference number, or code, with additional digits for the components of the holding. The codes correspond to political and administrative divisions. Space is left for another digit that indicates whether or not the holding is associated with a household. For example: 1 can apply to holdings associated with at least one household; 2 to commercial holdings; and 3 to those of mixed status, i.e. operating as enterprises but organized in line with the family structure of the owners.
Specific data, including household characteristics, should be collected on each unit. After listing the holding data, the specific reference number for the household is compiled. The reference number for the household should not be the same as that for the holding because they are not necessarily in a one-to-one correspondence. The possible situations are:
· One household administering more than one agricultural holding;Chapter 4 details some recommendations on assigning identification reference numbers and on procedures that avoid gender bias in the identification of the person actually in charge of production - in the absence of a specific strategy, this role is usually automatically assigned to a man.
· One holding administered by two or more persons from different households;
· One household with one holding administered by persons from one household;
· A holding organized entrepreneurially, administered by a hired manager and not corresponding to a household.
The major productive resources are: land, water, technology, machinery, equipment and installations, financial resources, training, and participation in agricultural organizations. Chapter 2 looked at some of the policy errors that arise out of ignorance of women's actual participation in agricultural production. Factors that must be reckoned into the statistical data equation in order to avoid such errors are outlined below.
Land is one of the main factors of production. A full and accurate description of how land is shared between men and women is decisive for the formulation of appropriate policies. Category 5 of the Census Programme33 proposes two subdivisions; one for items that concern the entire holding and one for items that concern each parcel of that holding. The land tenure categories for each parcel recommended by the Programme include the following, all of which are important for an analysis of land tenure from a gender perspective:
33 Op. cit., footnote 25.In addition to the size of the land area owned, a breakdown is needed of: how it is used (cropped, sown and harvested); the soil quality (rainfed, hydromorphic, irrigated, drained); the area under pasture; and the access to woodlands.
· Units without land, regardless of the type of agricultural production, including forest gathering or grazing; area owned or held in ownership-like possession, over which the holder possesses a title and/or has the right to determine the nature and extent of its use - this does not include areas rented to others;
· Area rented from others for agricultural production for a limited period of time, with payment in money and/or produce (usually 50 percent, in which case the risks are shared by the owner);
· Area held without legal ownership title or payment of rent but with full rights of use;
· Communal area operated under tribal or traditional tenure forms or derived from some form of specific legislation, such as agrarian reform;
· Area operated under other forms of tenure, such as transitory tenure or inheritance proceedings.
Water, irrigation and drainage
These are essential agricultural services and it is important to identify and record the existing gender differences in access to them. The Census Programme recommends that data on irrigation and drainage be collected at the level of the land parcel, and that access to water for holdings without land (home gardens) also be included. Sources and costs of water, irrigation and drainage services should be detailed, along with alternatives such as water storage jars or tanks, deep wells for irrigation, irrigation and drainage canals and other installations for irrigation or for watering livestock.
Data should also be collected on: the distance from the holding to the source of water (including topography); how long it takes to reach it; who is responsible for this activity; whether pumping or other extraction techniques are required; and whether there is a queue to get water.
Crop and livestock technology
Studies have revealed gender disparities in access to inputs. Gender-disaggregated data are therefore needed on access to such inputs as pest and disease control products, which have a sizeable impact on productivity.
As in the case of irrigation and drainage services, data should be collected at the parcel level where possible, specifying who operates and works on the parcel. This information is not only of value to the agricultural sector, it may also be relevant to the health sector, given the human health implications of pesticide and fertilizer use.
The Census Programme recommends collecting the following data on the inputs used in crop, forest and livestock production:
· For crops: organic and inorganic fertilizers; pesticides, herbicides or insecticides; seeds and type of seeds (high-yielding or others); tree grafts; crops under protective cover or other modern production methods (trellising tomatoes, hydroponics); and nursery or glasshouse production;
· For livestock technology: vaccines; supplementary feedstuffs and mineral salts; mechanized milking; anti-parasitical treatment; and artificial insemination;
· For forestry:
reforestation; pest control; thinning; and selection of trees to be
The Census Programme discusses machinery and equipment in detail, with sections on types of machinery, equipment and installations and on access to transport, indicating the kind of data to collect. A precoded country-specific list can be prepared defining machinery and equipment data. It is very important to gather data on the equipment that women use (traditional or modern), because of their prominent role in processing (husking, hulling, drying, etc.). Data are also needed on the holding's sources of energy - electricity, gasoline, draught animal traction and alternatives such as solar power.
Types of machinery include: tractors; threshers; harvesters; seeders; huskers; dryers; sorters; packers; coffee, rice or cocoa huskers; shredders; fumigators; grain mills for maize, cassava and coconut; power saws; power hoists; band saws; and haulers.
Installations include: stables; chicken coops; granaries; fattening pens; sheds for poultry and pigs; cooling tanks; incubators; fodder silos; and feed mixers.
Transport items include: pick-up trucks; lorries; carts; boats; launches; and draught or pack animals.
Data on who owns the machinery, means of transport and equipment and who has access to them are also imperative from the gender point of view.
Another cause of low income levels among small farmers is their lack of access to diversified markets. Farmers often have no alternative but to sell their produce to an intermediary who collects the milk at the farmgate. Another constraint to farmers' mobility is lack of access to public or private transport. Many areas in developing countries still lack roads, highways and rail and/or river transport.
Difficulties in gaining access to credit restrict farmers' use of inputs, and this has repercussions on productivity. The obstacles that women face in gaining access to credit and some recent innovations developed by lending institutions to overcome these problems are discussed in Chapter 2. Data on credit must include the following:
1. Terms of credit: prerequisites such as property for collateral; guarantees such as harvest risk insurance; presale of harvest; and repayment schedules;There are also government subsidies for farmers and, in addition to the actual financial support, technical advice in accounting, finance and administration is also very valuable. Specific questions can be asked in each country about existing programmes.
2. Sources of credit: commercial banks; development and agrarian banks; lending institutions that target the poor (especially rural women); moneylenders; cooperatives; NGOs; insurance companies; and informal sources such as friends and relatives.
Some of the problems concerning training and extension have already been discussed in Chapter 2 which stressed the need to ensure that women are not excluded from these programmes. The people who are participating (or not participating) in some kind of training activity need to be identified. An analytical overview might lead to a decision to revamp the strategies of gender-sensitive training and extension programmes, and this would make it possible to evaluate whether people are not participating in these programmes because the programmes are off-target or because they do not fit in with women's busy schedules. There is a need for strategies that overcome the barriers to women's participation. For example, it might be advisable to seek ways of lightening women's workloads and rescheduling the length and timing of extension programmes.
Participation in household and community decision-making has a great bearing on access to resources and on development in general. It is not easy to establish the exact extent to which power is shared, but there are some helpful criteria. Membership in farmers' cooperatives indicates a certain capacity for debate and for projecting one's views, while participation in women's associations denotes a certain aptitude for escaping the isolation of the family circle (although some societies do not allow this), arranging with the family to be away from the home and land parcel, and exchanging ideas with others.
Women can strengthen their capacity to manage the holding or parcel by seeking advice and training. Being active in rural and farmers' associations is one way of accomplishing this, but women's participation in these organizations is still low. Some studies have shown that women members of industrial, craft and household management cooperatives (purchasing, improvements, services) are fairly numerous, but that there is no significant female presence in agricultural cooperatives.34
34 Op cit., footnote 6.It is recommended that data be collected at the community level on rural people's participation in various types of organizations. All household members involved in agricultural work should be asked about their affiliations and in what capacity (member, sitting on the executive board, management, leadership roles, etc.) they exercise them. Organizations could be categorized as follows:
· Services, such as credit, technical skills, agricultural equipment and implements (communal tractor) and collective transport;Where there is no participation, it should be determined whether this is because of custom or formally established rules.
· Marketing support, such as purchases, sales and processes;
· Landowners' or landholders' associations;
· Livestock or agricultural producers' associations;
· Community organizations of various types.
Production can be classified in terms of:
· Purpose of agricultural activity: for home consumption, as an industrial input (perhaps, in turn, intended for food, e.g. sugar cane), or as an industrial raw material (such as cotton);It is advisable to focus on specific products when exploring the various gender-differentiated contributions to agricultural and livestock production. Women are more likely to grow vegetables and rear small livestock, but there are gender divisions of labour at the commercial cropping level as well as on the small farm and the promotion or suppression of any given crop may well have a differential gender impact in terms of employment.
· Type of crop: permanent such as fruit trees, or temporary such as maize;
· Livestock production: for home consumption, as by-products, etc.
The following data should be collected on production:
· Name and type of crop produced and whether it is permanent or temporary;
· Area under tree production and number of trees;
· Harvesting and production cycles;
· Large and small livestock by species - beehives, poultry by type, pigs, sheep, goats, rabbits, donkeys, horses, cattle - and what they are used for - food, transport, labour or by-products such as hides or wool.
Data on the purpose of production are particularly relevant to anti-poverty and food security policies. Production for on-farm, home consumption (which should be broken down into food and feed) must be clearly distinguished from production for sale (which should be broken down into domestic sales in local, regional or national markets, and production for export).
In both cases, it is important to look at storage and conservation capacity. Price swings in international markets are another factor to consider. Two of the major causes of rural poverty are declining terms of trade and price slumps, which spell trouble for traditional agriculture. Data should also be collected on marketing systems. Marketing constraints are a decisive factor in low rural income levels.
Marketing systems can be divided into the following types:
· Direct sale to consumers;
· Direct sale through an intermediary at a collection centre, which can be: a) always the same one; b) several different ones, with the freedom to choose; or c) farmgate sales;
· Sale of produce: a) harvested; or b) standing (the buyer hires dayworkers to harvest the crop);
· Other practices such as that
used in the garment industry, where workers sell their labour by doing piecework
at home. This also happens in the small-scale poultry sector, for example, when
farmers receive inputs, including chickens which they rear to maturity in their
own installations. The poultry are then picked up, and the farmer is paid for
the service rendered.
3.4.1 The labour force on entrepreneurial holdings
3.4.2 The labour force on small units
3.4.3 Family-linked enterprises
3.4.4 Dayworkers and piece-workers
Labour is an essential component in all agricultural activities. Data on labour and employment need to be measured and analysed for each type of holding to detect gender-specific contributions in agricultural production. An entrepreneurial establishment exists primarily to earn money, so profit is the prime motivation and hired labour a means to an end, while the rationale for small production units is to feed the family and meet its basic needs. The use of all resources, both on- and off-farm and including human, follows this logic.
Gathering data on a sector as heterogeneous as agriculture is obviously an extremely complex undertaking. Activities are seasonal, so they vary with time and place. Gender differentiation is of great importance. A careful examination of the different kinds of agricultural organization and their specific constraints is needed in order to capture individuals' involvement in specific farm activities:
· Entrepreneurial holdings. Under the best-case scenario, a modern, up-to-date manager can provide reliable data on permanent workers. Only rudimentary data can be obtained on temporary workers, as company records simply list the number of persons hired, the duration of their contracts and, sometimes (particularly for gender-specific tasks), the sex of each worker. During labour-intensive periods, such as the harvest season, workers are hired on a first-come, first-employed basis. The demand for help varies and can change from day to day. Household surveys can supply additional data on workers involved in entrepreneurial activities.In most cases there are enough data on access, available inputs and type and purpose of production35 to identify the type of holding. Data on workers within the holding are a further aid to clarifying the situation and confirming the classification. Generally speaking, labour on holdings may be: hired only; family members only; or a combination of the two.
· Holdings that are tied to the domestic unit. The first problem with this type of holding is how to identify the specific unit, and the second is the tendency to undercount women workers. The blurred distinction between domestic and productive chores and the persistence of stereotyping that denies status to women farmers are the main reasons for censuses' failure to record women as economically active.
· Other kinds of holding. Between these two extremes, there is a vast range of holding types which are not always easy to classify. For example, a family economic unit may have an entrepreneurial structure. In view of this complexity, various strategies and tools are needed to identify and analyse the employment situation on the holding. In any case, the scope and limitations of the various data-gathering instruments should be weighed and analysed beforehand.
35 See section on Characteristics to identify for all holdings.The relationship between the holding and its labour force calls for two comments:
· First, each country should set a numerical limit for permanent workers above which a small unit is classified as an entrepreneurial holding. Labour is very cheap in poor countries and some people work for food alone. Even relatively small units tend, therefore, to have non-family workers, although they still operate as "family or semi-entrepreneurial units".
· Second, mixed units exist, and these are the hardest to differentiate. The organization and purpose of production may suggest that the holding be classified as entrepreneurial, but the family members working on the holding operate it as a family business, in which working and family relations are interchangeable. The rationale of having salaried workers is, however, entrepreneurial. The best solution in these cases is to collect data at both family and entrepreneurial levels.
The following data should to be collected on the labour force on entrepreneurial holdings:
· Characteristics of the head of holding: i.e. the socio-demographic profile of the entrepreneur (age, sex, education, ethnic group or mother tongue, seniority);Workers are hired on a daily basis and paid for the amount of work done. Some kinds of work allow specific data to be collected on workers, particularly sex, as in Mexico where only women are hired to pick strawberries and tomatoes. For some crops, such as sugar cane, only men are hired. A worker may work on more than one holding during the same season. And, while the contract is generally signed by one individual, several members of that individual's family may be helping with the work, although the salary, which is for the amount of work done, is paid only to the individual hired.
· The socio-demographic profile of permanent workers, including the manager (age, sex, education, ethnic group or mother tongue, seniority and duties);
· Ideally, the socio-demographic profile of temporary workers should also be recorded, although this is almost always highly problematic as the employer usually lacks the relevant information.
As socio-demographic and labour data on temporary workers probably cannot be captured at the holding level, they must be sought in the household survey. Even when this happens, many women workers, such as day or migrant workers who move from one region to the next in search of work, remain uncounted. Many such women take part in the waves of migrant workers who follow a specific crop - tomato pickers in Mexico, for example - and it is enormously difficult to define their habitual place of residence. The special case of such workers is discussed in greater detail in the section on Dayworkers and pieceworkers.
Despite these constraints, the following data should be collected on temporary workers hired by agricultural holdings:
· Sex, age, ethnic group or mother tongue;
· Place of residence - within or outside the community;
· Geographical location of place of residence - nearby or distant;
· Place of origin - regional or local, interregional or national, international;
· Type of hiring - individual or group;
· Place of hiring - street, home, village;
· Method of hiring - indirect by announcement, union or intermediary (whether an institution or an individual contractor), or direct by owner or manager;
· Hiring costs - transport, fees
to intermediaries, contractors, etc.
36 Recording the number of workers (on holdings where such data are available) entails the risk of double-counting, as a worker may work on more than one holding during the time period of the survey.Working conditions in the agricultural sector are known to be quite different from those in other sectors;37 both the intensity of the work and the numbers hired vary greatly throughout the year. A day's work in the field easily exceeds eight hours. In developing countries, the legal working week for non-agricultural work is about 45 hours (five nine-hour days or five eight-hour days and one half-day of four to six hours). Surveys in tropical countries, where day length varies little throughout the year, show that agricultural workers asked about the length of their workday usually answered: "from sun-up to sundown", i.e. some 12 hours including transport time. It may be somewhat arbitrary to set a norm, but a ten-hour workday would seem reasonable under these circumstances. The figure of interest is not the number of men or women who are working but the number of workdays that are paid for. The number of dayworkers during a given time period can only be captured at the household survey level.
37 This is one of the reasons for which, in the non-agricultural sector, ILO collects data only on the number of hours worked.
The single identifying feature of small units is their close link with the household. Data should therefore be collected on both family and hired workers. When few persons are hired, only the basic characteristics need be recorded and detailed data on labour markets need not be entered.
The concept of household38 is based on the arrangements people make for providing themselves with food or other essentials of living. A household may be either one-person or multiperson. The persons in the group may pool their incomes and have a common budget to a greater or lesser extent; they may be related or unrelated persons or a combination of both.
38 This is an abbreviated version of a very broad concept of household taken from FAO, op cit., footnote 25, p. 29.The head of the household is the man or woman recognized as such by other household members. This person makes the decisions and has the primary responsibility for managing household matters.39 Identifying the head of household is important in establishing family relationships and the relevant classifications. Prevailing stereotypes often cause the role to be assigned to an adult male, resulting in a marked tendency to under-record women heads of household, even in cases where a woman makes the decisions and is the principal source of family income. Traditionally, a woman is considered the head of the household only when there is no adult male, i.e. widows, separated, divorced and unmarried women living alone or in households where the husband or male companion has emigrated.
39 In some cases there is more than one head of household, but there is as yet insufficient statistical experience of this situation.In the section on The concept of holder from a gender perspective, the point was made that the head of household is not necessarily the head of holding (or agricultural producer). This must be emphasized at the data collection stage (see Chapter Four).
The enumerator needs to collect data on every member of the household, detailing each person's work status on the family farm, farm task (season, duration, specialization, where it done) and work status on other holdings (paid in cash or in kind, as a labour swap or unpaid), as well as non-farm tasks.
Special care must be taken with activities that tend, by their nature, to be lumped together with domestic tasks and are, thereby, often omitted from the statistics, even though they make an important contribution to the household's resources. Activities concerning non-wood forest products are an example of this and include:
· Plants, roots and fungi picked for home consumption and for sale;Unlike domestic chores (which are not considered as economic activities in statistics), processing jobs such as shelling, husking and sun-drying are considered as economic activities, even when the purpose of production is home consumption. Because such jobs are very easily confused with domestic tasks, the enumerator must be alert to the difference and the questionnaire should include direct questions on specific economic activities that tend to be left out of the statistical equation.
· Plants and medicinal barks picked for home consumption and for sale;
· Fuelwood gathered for home consumption and for sale;
· Resin, clay, fibres and plants, or their by-products, gathered for sale.
Non-agricultural productive activities are also of interest. These may concern goods produced for family consumption or they may involve the labour market, and data should be collected on principal occupation, work status, branch of activity and income produced. Such data permit a partial evaluation of how dependent the small unit is on transfers from other sectors.
In addition to the contribution of household members to the agricultural work done on the holding, any specialized workers hired must also be recorded with such characteristics as: sex, number of days worked, specific tasks, and method of payment (for a specific period, per day worked, per task, in proportion to the amount produced). For family units, the managerial function is performed by one member of the household - for women without conjugal partners this responsibility is often assumed by a close member of the family who is paid a share of the produce.
The following information needs to be collected concerning the labour force of small production units:
Household characteristics are defined according to: number of household members; age and sex of each; type of household; and characteristics of head of household.
The FAO Programme defines several different types of households (p. 29). One 1984 UN classification lists relationship, age and sex as the defining characteristics of households. For example:
· Single woman (one-person household);Other household types are based on relationship alone. Current computer technology makes it easy to introduce new variables and it is, therefore, feasible to visualize family structures in a number of different ways. Regardless of the type of household description adopted, it should be possible to establish the ratio of producers to consumers and, especially, to identify the number of consumers for whom the agricultural producer/holder, whether male or female, is responsible, thus enabling subsequent comparative gender analyses.
· Single man (one-person household);
· Single mother with dependent children;
· Single father with dependent children;
· Two-generation household without children;
· Three-generation household.
GENERAL HOUSING CHARACTERISTICS
From the gender and sustainable development point of view, relevant data on housing include those concerning the sources of water and fuel for cooking. There is an urgent need for such data because the demand for fuelwood is so great in some areas that new and alternative sources of energy and labour-saving devices are needed to lighten workloads and protect the environment.
CHARACTERISTICS OF HOUSEHOLD MEMBERS
Socio-demographic characteristics of household members
Data to collect are:
· Sex and age;The age and sex of all household members must be recorded. While sex is obviously an essential variable for gender analysis, age is also fundamental in examining gender contributions and gender access to resources throughout an individual's life. Children and the elderly often make a substantial contribution in the agricultural sector, especially on family farms. The existence of child labour also has serious implications for the health and education of minors. In many countries it is common for children to help on the family farm or take part in some other income-generating activity. A child may have been hired directly by an employer or else be helping a family member who has been hired on the basis of payment per volume of work (in which case the amount produced by the minor is added to that produced by the adult family member). These children often have little or no schooling, either because they have had to work from a very early age or because of a general lack of educational services and transport. The constraints such children face in access to education and formal agricultural training tend to sideline them from future employment opportunities in later life. The situation of the girl-child is particularly critical.
· Place of birth and place of residence;
· Marital status and number of children;
· Relationship to other household members;
· Education (literacy, level of schooling);
· Ethnic group or mother tongue; place of origin for migrants;
· Temporary emigration of members present (purpose and duration of absence);
· Temporarily absent members (reasons for emigration and length of stay outside household);
· Destination of emigrants; number of children (for women of childbearing age).
Every country has a legal minimum working age, and questions concerning economic activity are usually addressed to people above that specified age, despite the fact that the legal minimum is often not respected. Given the various problems that arise in identifying child labour and determining the contribution of children, a range of investigative techniques, such as anthropological data, need to be brought into play. In rural areas, both men and women work well into old age, especially where social security or other forms of assistance to the elderly are non-existent.
The social status of men and women is closely linked to their marital status and the number of children. In the rural sector, this has a major impact on access to land, household responsibilities and agricultural activities.
Procreation is of particular importance in rural areas, where childless women may suffer a form of social ostracism. Although large families with many small children represent a heavy workload for the parents, they also provide the only guarantee that people will be cared for in their old age.
In agriculture, a certain amount of basic schooling is a prerequisite for access to information and technology and for participation in technical training and extension programmes. Studies have examined the link between farmers' education and efficiency.40 In rural areas where there are few community services, education has a major impact on family health and on participation in the life of the community.
40 Jamison and Lau (1982), cited in Saito, K.A. & Weidemann, C.J. 1990. Agricultural extension for women farmers in Africa. World Bank Discussion Papers No. 103. Washington DC, World Bank.For historical reasons, certain ethnic groups with their mother tongue lack equal access to inputs and do not have the same skills in natural resource management. In some countries, facets of agricultural development only make sense in the light of differences among the various ethnic groups' approaches.
People move from one geographical area to another in search of work and, depending on the employment opportunities, emigration may be permanent or seasonal. Workers who move daily from one area to another can also be defined as part of the migrant population. Permanent moves, and some temporary emigration, may involve either whole family groups or individuals, and there are regions where more single women than single men are on the move.
General characteristics of employment
Data on the following types of employment are needed:
· Work on the family production unit;These data can be used to define types of holding. The next step is to distinguish among viable, potentially viable and non-viable holdings, and between self-sustaining holdings and those dependent on external transfers; these data enable the subsequent review of such crucially important areas as the informal agricultural sector and subsistence agriculture. Chapter 4 includes proposals on how to establish appropriate categories.
· Work on another holding for pay (as a paid worker, on a piecework basis, helping a family member or as a dayworker);
· Non-farm work (basic characteristics of activity, occupation and status), remuneration and season.
The way in which the work variable is defined, evaluated and measured is very significant when gender-sensitive statistics are being produced. Chapters 1 and 2 pointed out some of the main biases that cause women in the workforce to be statistically under-represented. These problems are particularly acute in the agricultural sector.
Faced with the need for concepts and definitions that quantify work from a gender perspective, the international organizations reviewed the issue and came up with recommendations to bring statistics more in-line with reality. The International Conference of Labour Statisticians (ICLS), in 1982, broadened the definition of "economic activity".41 Since then, the United Nations System of National Accounts has counted as economically active all persons producing economic goods and services through their own work over a specific period of time.
41 ICLS. 1983. Resolution concerning statistics of the economically active population, employment, unemployment and underemployment. In ILO. Bulletin of Labour Statistics. Geneva, Switzerland.The latest revision of the National Accounts, adopted in 1993 by the Statistical Commission of the United Nations, expands the notion of "economically active" to include certain domestic activities. Home production of goods for home consumption is now included as an economic activity on a par with the production of goods and services for market. Activities that used not to be considered economic have been assigned an economic value, making it much easier to measure the work of economically active women.42 The following activities are now included:
42 EU, IMF, OECD, UN and World Bank. 1993. System of National Accounts. New York.Most activities carried out in subsistence economies are now included, and most of these are done by women. However, the new System of National Accounts still does not consider domestic and personal services performed by members of the household, for themselves or for others, to be productive activities. These services include unpaid household tasks such as preparing meals and cleaning, child care and looking after the elderly - work that is mainly women's responsibility.
· Production and storage of agricultural and natural products (gathering fruits and nuts, etc.);
· Processing of raw materials and provision of water;
· Processing of basic primary products for market or home consumption;
· Other production, such as weaving, dressmaking, pottery-making and furniture-making, whether it is for sale or not.
Establishing a distinction between activities that fall under the former definition and those included under the new headings will enable development trends to be reviewed and will highlight the impact of new definitions and changing concepts. Such a distinction should be made at the data collection and compilation stage.
Economically active population
Everybody who is old enough to work and who has worked during the time period of the survey is counted in the economically active population.43 Even when the produce is not intended for market, women performing the following activities during the time reference are counted as part of the labour force: growing vegetables and fruit for the family; making butter; fetching water and wood; storing harvest grains; and processing and storing food for later consumption.
43 This includes those who were unemployed during the time period (see the section on Measuring unemployment).The Census Programme recommends that the agricultural year should be the enumeration unit for household members working on the holding because farm activities fluctuate so greatly throughout the year. Measuring women's contribution to agriculture requires a fairly long reference period because it tends to peak at the most labour-intensive times of the farm year.
The ILO recommendations suggest that the economically active population be measured in terms of:
· An extended period: one season or one year, called the habitually active period;The habitually active period is set in accordance with the country's specific situation,44 while the term "currently active" refers to the population at a particular moment. Data obtained in this way give a more exact picture of the statistical universe covered and are of better quality, although they fail to record all the persons who contribute to production throughout the entire farm cycle.
· A short period: one week or one day, called the currently active period.
44 Hussmanns, R., Mehran, F. & Verma, V. 1990. Surveys of economically active population, employment, unemployment and underemployment: an ILO manual on concepts and methods. Geneva, ILO.Neither of these options measure changes and fluctuations over a longer time frame, and these are of particular importance in the agricultural sector. For a more concise description of agricultural employment, therefore, it is advisable first to capture the broader universe and then to look in greater detail at the type of participation, time spent on an activity, etc., using retrospective or periodic surveys. On the other hand, the nature of non-farm employment suggests that it is best considered on a brief time frame, with subsequent surveys carried out periodically.
When the objective is to identify all those participating in farm activities, questions should be formulated directly. A questionnaire that is based on principal or secondary activity is unlikely to generate exact answers. Respondents may be performing more remunerative tasks at the time of the census and therefore conclude that their agricultural activities are not pertinent or worthy of mention, even though, at other labour-intensive peak times, they make a significant contribution to sowing and harvest, for example.
The economically inactive population includes such categories as housewives and students. All recommendations relating to data collection on economic activities advise that a person engaging in an economic activity at the same time as a non-economic activity should be instructed to give priority to the first. Prevailing stereotypes, however, tend to emphasize the importance of the second, so ensuring that this instruction is followed by the respondent is sometimes problematic.
Constraints to measuring the economically active population
Despite all the international recommendations designed to ensure that statistics mirror both men's and women's work, there are still problems in reckoning women's economic contribution.
In addition, some countries have not yet adopted the new recommendations and are still applying old concepts, definitions and methods of data collection. Even when the new parameters are followed, the quantification of unpaid work often produces unreliable data.
Measuring economic contributions in subsistence agriculture (which often involves such activities as gathering wood and water, shelling or husking, and growing vegetables) is particularly challenging when traditional data collection methods are used, even assuming that the correct concepts and definitions are followed. The distinction between housework (which is not an economic activity) and farm work (which is) is rather blurred in subsistence agriculture. Women, who do both types of work, tend to blend them into one seamless activity, often using the same tools to do both at the same time.
Special circumstances within a country can create additional problems in measuring subsistence agriculture, in particular, and unpaid work in general. These problems concern the wording of questionnaires, the formulation of questions, gender stereotypes, how women perceive their work, the training of enumerators and the choice of respondents.
When questions and questionnaires are being designed, the following facts should be borne in mind:
· Most people in rural areas do some kind of agricultural work, regardless of their other occupations.The questionnaire and questions should be worded to prevent women from identifying themselves as "just homemakers". Ideally, questions should clearly and explicitly refer to subsistence activities, giving examples of economic activities that are usually done by women in the country or area concerned, and not solely to paid work.
· Women tend to underestimate their own farm work and think of it as part of housework. Some of the terms habitually used in questionnaires tend to be those usually applied to paid work only.
· Enumerators tend to project their own perceptions concerning women's work.
· Men may be reluctant to admit that their wives or daughters work because of the implications in terms of male social status or other cultural or religious factors.
Unemployment is a complex phenomenon to define and measure in both developed and developing countries. In the poorer countries, where few workers are covered by social security, unemployment insurance is non-existent and only a tiny segment of the population can afford to remain unemployed. Unemployment is a seriously limited concept for describing the labour situation in the developing countries because it does not adequately mirror the real need for sources of paid work.
The international definition of unemployment established in 1982 by ICLS45 defines as unemployed all those persons above a specified age who, on the day of enumeration, fit one of the following three categories:
45 Op. cit., footnote 41.Because the acute poverty in which so many rural people live means that they cannot afford to remain without work, they are highly unlikely to fit the first definition, even though self-employment is extremely precarious. It is also extremely unusual for rural people to meet the third condition. People are unlikely to take active steps to seek paid employment when employment opportunities are so few, but this should not be taken to mean that they do not have a problem finding employment, but rather that the concept as defined above is simply not appropriate for developing country economies.
· Without work: i.e. not in paid employment or self-employment;
· Currently available for work: i.e. available for paid employment or self-employment on the day of enumeration;
· Seeking work: i.e. had taken specific steps in a specified recent period to seek paid employment or self-employment.
Structural aspects of the labour force
The branch of activity, the main occupation and the status in employment (category, position or status) all need to be taken into account when studying how the labour force is structured.
The branch of activity has already been established in an aggregated form for agricultural activities. All production activities fall into a single sector - agriculture - which is broken down into subcategories consisting of crop production, livestock production and forestry. These, in turn, are classified by species. For a classification of service activities in agriculture or agro-industries, consult the UN International Standard Industrial Classification of all Economic Activities or the specific country classification.
Technically speaking, main occupation refers to the kind of work performed during the reference period (specific tasks or functions), or to the worker's profession. There is considerable gender differentiation of work in all countries. Generally speaking, women's work is less well-paid and their working conditions poorer. It has also been observed that, when women enter previously male-dominated occupations, there is a drop in both status and income.46
46 Op. cit., footnote 6.When gender discrimination in the labour market is being analysed, all occupations need to be considered at a level of disaggregation that will preclude the grouping together of jobs that differ in status or pay. The most detailed data possible should be collected on all occupations. While the 1988 ILO classification (ISCO-88) represented a step forward, much still remains to be done to incorporate a gender perspective. The very general headings used in the agricultural sector preclude differentiation according to degree of specialization, hindering both the analysis of the technical division of labour in agriculture and qualitative population surveys, such as on the impact on health of a given activity. Each country is free to design subcategories that mirror its specific situation, but these should be compatible with the major categories used in the international classification system.
In the most recent international classification, ISCO-88, most agricultural workers come under Group 6: Skilled agricultural and fishery workers, which includes (under its main Subgroup 6: Agricultural, fisheries and related work) persons whose products are intended for market, as well as subsistence farmers and fishers.47
47 ILO. 1989. International Standard Classification of Occupations. Geneva, Switzerland.Status in employment
Status in employment refers to the status of a person with respect to his or her employment, i.e. whether he or she is paid, is an own-account worker, works with other employees, employs other workers, and so forth. The classification of status in employment (category, position or status) has not achieved a general consensus even within ILO itself (as discussed at ICLS in 1993).
Men and women are not generally listed under the same categories. Some countries, for instance, habitually exclude women from paid or salaried work, automatically turning them into the largest group of unpaid family workers. In agriculture, a great many workers are unpaid either because they are family members working on the family holding, or because they fall into the category of subsistence workers (of whom the majority are women).
The International Standard Classification of Employment (ISCO-93) includes the following groups:48
48 ICLS. 1993. Resolution concerning the International Classification of Status in Employment (ICSE). In ILO. Bulletin of Labour Statistics. Geneva, Switzerland.Subsistence workers work independently to produce goods and services for home consumption, the economic value of which is vital for household subsistence. They may be listed under several of the above classifications and, therefore, are not considered as a separate category.
· Employee: a person who is paid per time worked. An employee is a dayworker if hired on a daily basis, and a salaried worker if the situation is more stable and the pay weekly, bi-monthly, etc.
· Employer: a person who hires one or more employees in his or her own economic enterprise. An employer may work alone or with one or more partners.
· Own-account worker: a person who operates his or her own economic enterprise (alone or with one or more partners), or who engages independently in a profession but hires no permanent employees (although he or she may use unpaid family workers).
· Member of producers' cooperative: a person who is an active member of a cooperative that produces goods or services.
· Contributing or unpaid family worker: a person who contributes to the production of the agricultural holding or family business but receives no pay in the form of money or marketable products. Such workers cannot be considered partners because their involvement in the enterprise in terms of time worked or participation in the productive process is not on a par with that of the head of the enterprise. Women tend to be classified in this category even though they are often true partners, sharing the work, decision-making and risks equally with the holder (spouse, brother, son or father).
· Pieceworker: a person who has an employer but is paid for the amount produced and not the time worked. The employer's sole commitment is to pay an agreed amount for an agreed volume of work. Although remuneration depends on the result of the work done, there is usually a minimum quota, which may force the worker to enlist other members of the family (wife, brother, children) to meet the quota. Such family members should also be classified as belonging to this category and income must be carefully considered because, while the head of the family receives the pay, it has been generated by more than one person;
· Unclassifiable by status: a person for whom there are insufficient data and who does not fit any of the above categories.
A high percentage of unpaid family workers are women. Their work is often undercounted and the distinction between housework and farm work blurred. Initially, people belonging to a family enterprise were considered to be economically active only if they devoted at least one-third of their normal working week (arbitrarily set at 45 hours) to the enterprise. This limitation excluded a great many woman who combined work in the home with a contribution to the enterprise.
In 1982, this limitation was removed in favour of a recommendation that a single standard be used for all workers; usually one hour of work during the time reference. This made it easier to recognize and include the contribution of women working in family enterprises. Although one hour may seem a very short time, any time limit would be arbitrary. When all persons have been recorded, the enumerator can start to classify the number of hours worked.
In 1993, ICLS adopted the term "contributing family workers" to replace the term "unpaid family workers". The new term embraces all the family members who make a contribution to the family enterprise. Those operating their own economic enterprise are classified as own-account workers. A husband and wife running an enterprise as partners are both counted as own-account workers, or as employers if they hire people to work for them.
Some holdings cannot be defined under either of the above two categories. These are holdings operated as enterprises, but organized on a family basis. In general, they can only be identified after data have been collected, and the enterprise and household surveys have shown who is responsible for operating the holding.
Enterprises tend to hire men and women to work on a daily or piecework basis (e.g. per kilogram of coffee picked). People hired on a piecework basis will call on their families to help boost their production quotas.49 The data on these workers should cover both the labour and the socio-demographic aspects. To be quantitatively valid, the data must be collected at the household level. A certain number of qualitatively valid data can be captured at the holding level in the form of case studies. These will enable the material conditions of workers in temporary farm workers' camps or at their places of residence to be analysed. Such a study is of inestimable value for an understanding of how agricultural labour markets work, but the data are partial in that they are qualitative and of limited coverage.
49 Child labour is very useful in coffee plantations, for example, as the beans grow on the lower branches.The relevant data with regard to:
· Terms of work: duration of contract, type of payment (salary, by day, on a piecework basis), seniority, remuneration, duties;
· Tools and equipment (as a prerequisite for hiring);
· Specific tasks in the agricultural and agro-industrial sectors: description of duties, job analysis, stages in the productive process (sowing, harvesting);
· Specialized or skilled work;
· Internal and external
· Sex and age;
Specific characteristics of migrant workers
· Migratory background:
age at first migration, territorial mobility, various places of residence,
length of stay and type of work;
- transmigrant, moving every day from place of residence to
place of work; permanent migrant with no fixed place of residence, moving
cyclically around the same areas, wherever work can be found;
Living-conditions of temporary migrant workers
· Housing or lodgings for temporary dayworkers: shelters, sheds, camps, workers' housing, rented rooms or houses, shacks (no payment);
· Child care arrangements for farm workers' children: left with the mother, brought along to the fields, arrangement with other farm workers for hired care, personal arrangements, child care facilities provided by employer;
· Health (medical assistance);
· Supplies (stores, commerce);
· Coresidence (living with whom);
· Personal security.