Rural Wage Employment in Developing Countries : Theory, Evidence and Policy
Poverty is still a serious global phenomenon, and remains concentrated in rural areas of developing countries. Much literature has been devoted to understanding the lives and prospects for small poor producers (smallholder farmers) and micro-entrepreneurs, but much less is known and written about those who lie at the bottom of the production chains as rural wage labourers. This book argues that the significance of those who totally or partially depend on rural wages for their survival is much greater than usually acknowledged, both in terms of their quantitative importance, but also, qualitatively for an understanding of rural poverty.
The volume brings together field-based empirical evidence from across Asia, Latin America, and Sub-Saharan Africa. Themes explored include the heterogeneity of the rural population working for wages; the relationship between the expansion of rural wage employment and other processes of social change and development; and the social and economic barriers to entry in rural labour markets. These elements are discussed in light of their policy implications, and the book ends with a progressive policy agenda to reduce poverty among rural wage workers.