This paper presents a case study of how livestock policies are made and
implemented in a national context, and how they can be improved to
better serve the interests of the poor. In Senegal, approximately
one-third of all households depend on livestock for some portion of
their livelihood, yet, the sector has not received significant state or
private investment, nor has it received a significant amount of
bi-lateral and international assistance.
The study used the key informant method supplemented with official
documents, newspaper sources and recently published research on the
livestock sector. Interviews helped reveal policymakers' concerns,
whereas field trips allowed the researcher to talk to farmers and learn
their perspectives from the bottom. Newspapers contained many lively
stories of how well-intentioned policies went awry at the implementation
stage, while published research analyzed various political,
institutional and technical aspects of policymaking in the sector.
The author concludes that poor producers in the sector remain relatively
unorganised and disadvantaged in the policy-formation process.
Macro-economic forces and the distribution of political influence focus
state attention on the concerns of large-scale producers and importers
of dairy and poultry products rather than on the concerns of poor
producers. The unexpected alliance between human rights organizations,
some of the most active public pressure groups in Senegal today, and
livestock producers during l'affaire du Doli however demonstrates the
potential for new issue linkages to strengthen the political position of
Strategic entry points are recommended that can both improve the
performance of the sector and the participation of the poor in
productive activities. With sufficient resources to back up programs and
efforts to identify political allies for the cause, it may be possible
to make livestock policies better serve the interests of the poor.
A three page executive summary is also available in addition to this
PPLPI, FAO, Rome, Italy, v+38pp.