This paper represents a provisional attempt to assess whether
Zimbabwe's land reform coherently addresses the issue of poverty
reduction. It examines the short-term outcome(s) of the reform programme
in relation to its initial objectives. More specifically, it examines
its impact on farm-workers. Historically, a vulnerable social group, the
farm-worker population was marginalized in the land reform process. The
majority of farm workers lost jobs in the process as well as access to
housing and social services such as health care and schools. Thus the
outcome of the programme has been the loss of jobs and livelihoods by
farm workers on the one hand, and the acquisition of land as a resource
by several hundred thousand small farmers, and black commercial farmers.
This mixed outcome of land reform deserves critical analysis. The paper
argues that social exclusion explains the historical and contemporary
marginalization of farm workers with profound social consequences for
Land reform for poverty reduction? Social exclusion reform for poverty reduction? Social exclusion and farm workers in Zimbabwe, presented at Staying Poor: Chronic Poverty and Development Policy, Institute for Development Policy and Management, University of Manchester, 7-9 April 2003. Chronic Poverty Research Centre (CPRC), Manchester, UK, iii + 18 pp.