Cross Study on Rural Economies of India and the African Continent: Clampdown on Fallacies


Youth is defined as a category as it is the basis of guiding policies to initiate investment decisions. In the developing countries and the so-called ‘East’, a set of economic opportunities that young people actually engage with is more or less limited by the education that they pursue given the finances and  family background. In contrast to this, the beauty of empirical analysis is that it utilises using geospatial indicators of access to markets and agricultural potential to partition the subcontinent’s rural economic space in ways that correspond with variation in observed economic outcomes is quite contrasting to the picture presented in the media. It can be shown primarily by organising and understanding labour allocation and other choices made by young people.

Thereby, drawing on village or other district surveys, focusing either on households or individuals, and sometimes accompanied by individual and/or group interviews (Andersson Djurfeldt, Kalindi, Lindsjö, & Wamulume, 2019; Berckmoes & White, 2014; Bezu & Holden, 2014; Kosec, Ghebru, Holtemeyer, Mueller, & Schmidt, 2018; Yeboah et al., 2020; Tadele & Gella, 2012). There are also survey data pertaining specifically to rural young people’s aspirations, and within these the importance of farming and rural areas (BMZ, 2017; Leavy & Hossain, 2014).

First, by contrasting data from four countries to present the rural young perception and their participation actively in the rural farm economy The next section would presents a self-developed simple framework for organising our mind-sets free of delusions to strategically work about a spatial distribution of opportunities available to rural economies The last section discusses descriptive statistics regarding the allocation arrangement of labour, economically viable decision making on contrasting basis of two parts of the developing block: India and the African Continent. Thus concluding with proposal for further research in policy and empirical study.


The inception of decolonisation and post-colonialism, two critically important factors have led to rural transformation: farm and pasture and/or income in households. According to Van den Broeck et al (2019) it spans much more and continues its influx with the growing dynamism which is spatially mediated. The dynamics of this interplay is central to non-farm rural economy (Hazel et al. 2007)

The Challenge is the nature of the on-off labour market which is largely informal and seasonal. Also the opportunities lay further afield as the local economies encompass rural, small town and urban settings, both inside and across regions.

 Diversities in the Rural Landscape and the geospatial variations

Curiosity driven anthropologists, sociologists, economists and even public policy scientists focussed merely on agricultural, pastoral and the needs of the simple primitive societies. A specially derived empirical research method is the Agro- Ecological Zonation as a spatial driven approach to study these diversities in totalities. The indicators of this faculty being both physical and biological characteristics like evolution of characteristics in locals, soil type, rainfall and so on.

Sombroek, Braun, & van der Pouw, 1982 exclaim this through a zoning and level of homogeneity system. Simple framework deriving socio- economic and development economics’ role at play as given by Proctor (2001).

While Geo-Spatial assessments focuses on livelihood of the rural households, there is immense diversity at this front as simply for the reason that the young are abandoning agriculture and non-vibrant rural areas to seek the greener pastures in the glorious urban regions.

Thus except economic engagements, other attributes such as farm work, self-employment, wage labour etc are few more indicators. However due to data constraints such issues lie outside the ambit of this research paper.


To compare the phenomena in a developing country such as India, by accruing the same from a set of other developing countries such as Ethiopa, Niger, Tanzania and Uganda .These countries are selected on the basis of indicators of interest in this empirical study. Furthermore these countries have a highly affluent predominant farming system, similar to India and the pertaining ecological system of Sub-Saharan Africa are the shared histories, agriculture, democratic and development policy.

Sample size restricted to secondary resources by the National Statistical agency for each country measured in population densities of 1000 persons per kilometre. The scope of this study goes beyond rural covering dimensions of areas of semi urban as well.

Ripoll et al., 2017 provides information relevant to age groups 15-24 on labour allocation decisions across households however the statistics suffered from discrepancies for the measurement problems, challenging contextual differences in countries and limitation in sources of data.

Thus in order to complement data, varied sources such as accessible regions, market access zoning of economical geographies and boundaries of urban areas as defined in Human Settlements database (Pesaresi & Freire, 2016).

Economic indicators for the potential in agriculture, primary indicators such as Enhanced Vegetation Index and MODIS sensors were used. Geospatial measures of agroclimatic, synthesis of high and low potential areas.


 Measures of Distribution:

Overlaying results as summarised through the average annual rainfall, population distribution, and low agricultural potential

Kibrom. E. et al (2020) about 56 per cent of young people live in areas with low agricultural potential, and 28 per cent in areas that have low potential and are also remote. The remaining young people are divided between Accessible (28%) and Middle-countryside (22%) areas, and a slight majority of these young people in areas with relatively low agricultural potential. A. Dwidewi (2020) in ‘Innovation and Development’ redefine it as 65 per cent in low agricultural potential and 15 in low potential and remote.

     Economic Allocation:

      What strikes is the wage employment and non-farm business engagement increase with proximity to markets. In some countries (e.g. Ethiopia, Zambia), the relative importance of these non-farm activities decreases with remoteness more slowly in high-potential areas. Similar is the condition with low density regions around Dibang Valley in Arunachal Pradesh and Lahul and Spiti in Himalyas.

    Employment Parameters

Across the geography, divisions in parameters such as employed young people across comparative regions in Africa and India. It was found that in accessible/good-potential areas in Ethiopia are home to 14 per cent of rural young people, they account for 23 per cent of all employed young people and 28 per cent of all employed young working full time. (Kibrom et. Al 2020)

Conversely, remote/poor-potential areas are home to 17 per cent of young people, but only 13 per cent of the employed young, and 1 per cent of employed young. (Jessica Heckert 2020).

 Income Orientation

Given the contemporary dynamics, there is farm orientation particularly crop production and pastoralism and then it is promulgated by the market scope, and increases then agricultural potential. These trends are consistent across alternative definitions of market access and agricultural potential. In addition to this other non-farm business and non-farm wage income shares of total household income generally increase with proximity to markets, as expected. These shares also generally increase with agricultural potential, indicating the positive linkages between the farm and non-farm economies.


While agriculture remains the dominant economic activity in rural India and the African continent, the peculiar rural non-farm economy thereby represents an important set of opportunities for the region’s rural young. However, as they do not charge out of the starting gates into employability, the rates of wage employment do not peak until individuals are in the at the prime of their careers in most countries, and the collective of individuals reporting no employability or economic activity is generally the largest for 20- to 30-year-olds. This suggests that there may be important barriers to non-farm work that take time for school-leavers to overcome.

A key finding of this article is that the substantive importance is given to the subjective context, livelihood choices and economic options are of paramount importance which are available to the rural young people.

Through this, we show that the employability opportunities available to the young is considerably nurtured by the economic geography: where people are more likely to have non-farm work, are more likely to work on a long term basis in their fields, and the variability of job types and employment sectors is larger, comparative to remote areas.

A developing nation’s young people are distributed across a multitude of geographical landscapes, and thus find assurance of life according to the structure of opportunities available to them. A considerable amount of the young are present in remote rural areas, where financial opportunities appear to be quite limited for the time being.

Spatial geophysical phenomena contributes to opportunities for economic reliability  which is seldom undertaken during policy decisions, discussions and deliberation of youth employment and economic engagement as a result the youth as a face a set of obstacles and challenges.

The policy decisions that benefits the young people may not be holistic enough and may only be applicable for those that target young people. Thus, apart from policies which focus on a holistic development and utilising full economic potential, the youth to be the target audience through improvements in infrastructure, digital financial inclusion, as there is potential in adversity in the current COVID-19 times to transform India into a digital hub. Apart from that universal social welfare schemes considering the focal point being eroding barrier to mobility, especially the rural-urban movement so as to provide the youth an opportunity to explore the urban realms.


Although agriculture is not seen as a form of a proper remunerative occupation and especially for India, it is only through advancements in innovation, partnership amongst sectors and capacity-building through collaborative cooperative approaches can it offer better market of opportunities to the rural youth and, most importantly, by developing a synergy with other sectors of the economy. Theoretical assertions in previous policies in previously present which were not are not based on empirical studies (Hunt, 2019) provided only the conceptions and misconceptions regarding the poor foundations of policies targeted for the youth as there exists a opportunity in rural areas for the growth of non-farm sector activities as well..

In addition to this, on a concluding note, the National Sample Survey data (NSSO), rural youth engage in vocational training of any sort stood at 93.7% chances of employment in 2017–18. The youth aspire to serve, whether private or public entities thus as agriculture remains the dominant economic activity in rural India, other sources of non-farm economy is the representative of essential variety of opportunities for region’s rural young people.