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Applying Multivariate Multilevel Models to Explore Arable Land Quality in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Case Study in Kenya

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Document pages: 16 pages

Abstract: Controversy exists on the magnitude and variability of farm nutrientbalances and quality of arable land in sub-Saharan Africa with Kenya amongthose affected negatively. This study investigates quality of arable land byfitting multivariate multilevel model to farm nutrient balance data collectedfrom five agro-climatic zones of Kenya (arable lands). Objectives of the studywere to investigate the magnitude and variability of Nitrogen, Phosphorus andPotassium (NPK) farm nutrient balances in arable lands of Kenya, study effectsof agro-climatic zones on nutrient balances and to determine effects of householdresource endowments on NPK nutrient balances. The study concludes thatagro-climatic zones differ with respect to farm nutrient balances; thatlivestock resource endowments and hired labour have positive effects on themagnitude and direction of farm nutrient balances; and that household ownershipof large capital resources do not guaranteea positive effect on farm nutrient balances. The study recommends integrationof sound livestock practices and application of agro-climatic zonedifferentiated interventions in future strategies for addressing farm nutrientbalances and arable land quality, and the use of large sample sizes andrelevant factors covariates in future analysis to shed additional insights onfarm nutrient balances and on how arable land quality can be improved.

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