Climate Change Perceptions and Attitudes to Smallholder Adaptation in Northwestern Nigerian Drylands

Nugun P Jellason, Richard N. Baines, John S. Conway, Chukwuma C Ogbaga

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As climate change is projected to increase in vulnerable areas of the world, we examined farmers’ perceptions of this change and their attitudes to adaptation in two communities (Zango and Kofa) in northwestern Nigeria. A total of 220 arable farming households completed a livelihoods survey preplanting. The perceptions survey was followed by a survey of 154 households post-harvest for the attitudes questions based on the theory of planned behaviour (TPB). In addition to the positive responses from the farmers towards climate change perceptions, TPB findings reveal that such perceptions could lead to intentions to adapt as determinants of attitude were significant. Subjective norm was a significant predictor of adaptation intention in Kofa, but not in Zango. Perceived behavioural control, though useful, was not a determinant of climate change adaptation intention. Most importantly, principal component analysis (PCA) of climate change perception variables allowed us to discriminate smallholder farming households and can be used as a tool for segmentation into climate change-perceiving and nonperceiving farming households. Efforts towards improving the determinants of behavioural intention for the poorly perceiving group could lead to better decisions to adapt to climate change and provide more targeted extension support in the future.
Original languageEnglish
Article number31
JournalSocial Sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jan 2019


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