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Are capital assets under pressure? The state of and challenges to Indigenous rice farming in the cultural ricescapes of Indonesia and the Philippines

This paper analyses the challenges of various types of capital assets to Indigenous rice farming in Bali, Indonesia, and Ifugao, the Philippines.

Resilient rice farming in indigenous ricescapes is dependent on access to various forms of capital assets; however, the acquisition of these assets is hindered by environmental, industry, demographic, and cultural vulnerabilities.

This paper examines the implications of these challenges on natural, physical, financial, human, social, and cultural capital assets for rice farming in the indigenously engineered ricescapes of Bali, Indonesia, and Ifugao, the Philippines. The study used site visits, focus group discussions, and interviews and employed a combined analysis of the Sustainable Livelihoods Framework and Bourdieu’s theory of capital to explore the interconnected vulnerabilities and their impacts on rice farming to understand the factors that endanger the preservation, cultural integrity, and heritage of these sites.

The study shows that similar challenges are present across these ricescapes, including land use changes, erratic weather patterns, and rice market volatility, among others. Additionally, dilemmas regarding cultural and normative directions for development are apparent, while livelihoods vary and are in flux among households due to their discrepant access to capital assets. Therefore, it is crucial to implement governmental, market, and development programs that strengthen rice farmers’ access to various types of capital assets to preserve the outstanding universal values of these ricescapes.

https://www.sei.org/publications/capital-assets-indigenous-rice-farming/ QR Code

Published Date: February 8, 2024

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