MiFOOD Paper No. 8: Young People’s Mobilities, Farming Aspirations and Engagements in Northern Ghana

Development policies targeting young people and African agriculture tend to focus on their abandonment of the sector and the need to attract new generations to agricultural activities through its commercialization. This paper points to potential gaps in such interventions by investigating the diverse mobilities, aspirations, and engagements of young people in farming, through a qualitative case study in rural northern Ghana. Our study also challenges the prevalent assumption of African farmers’ movements from rural to rural areas, from rural to urban areas, and out of farming altogether, as we found evidence of young people migrating from urban to rural areas. We also show that the intersection of generation, place and gender unevenly shaped young people’s movements to and away from rural areas, along with the broad patterns of their involvement with farming.

Siera Vercillo and Bruce Frayne

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