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The Nexus of Land use Changes and Livelihood Transformation of Farmers at Rural-Urban Interface of Pakistan

The Nexus of Land use Changes and Livelihood Transformation of Farmers at Rural-Urban Interface of Pakistan

Naveed Farah1*, Izhar Ahmad Khan1, Asif Ali Abro2, Jehanzeb Masood Cheema3 and Muhammad Luqman4*

1Department of Rural Sociology, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan; 2Newports Institute of Communications and Economics, Karachi, Pakistan; 3Department of Land and Water Conservation Engineering, PMAS-Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan; 4Department of Agricultural Extension, College of Agriculture, University of Sargodha, Sargodha, Pakistan.

*Correspondence | Naveed Farah, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan; Email: and Muhammad Luqman, University of Sargodha, Sargodha, Pakistan; Email:


In Pakistan, rapid urban expansion is changing the landscape at rural-urban interface through agricultural land conversion into urban infrastructures. The present study compares the patterns of land use changes and the resulting livelihood transformation of farmers at urban fringes in two contrasting cities of Punjab province of Pakistan. A mixed method approach was employed for data collection and at first, a longitudinal analysis of Landsat imagery of land use was done through GIS and Remote Sensing for a time period of 2001-2016. The results of GIS analysis revealed that during the period 2001 to 2016, Faisalabad showed 24% increase in urban area and 23 % of this expansion consumed agricultural land. In Sahiwal, urban land has increased by 21 %, which encroached 13 % of agricultural land and 8 % bare land. Qualitative and quantitative data show that most of the farmers (82.4 % in Faisalabad & 78.5 % in Sahiwal) have relocated toward more intensive farming from traditional extensive agriculture in response to declining agricultural land and, the 65.2 % (Faisalabad) and 71.8 % (Sahiwal) of respondents rely on farming plus non-farming activities as alternate livelihood strategies. The results of independent T-test reveals that the human and social assets index show an improved livelihood in Faisalabad. However, Sahiwal has a better Physical assets index (p=.008), natural assets index (p=.000) and Financial assets index (p=.000) as compared to Faisalabad. The overall livelihood index shows an improvement in the livelihood assets indicator in Sahiwal as compared to Faisalabad. The research findings will be helpful to understand the ways in which people construct their livelihoods in the milieu of agricultural land use changes at urban fringes which is crucial for formulating the strategies for the well-being of the farming households. 


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Sarhad Journal of Agriculture


Vol. 38, Iss. 2, Pages 388-758


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