Nina Bruvik Westberg has defended her PhD thesis at NMBU
The thesis sheds light on households’ agricultural investments and adaptation to climate risk and shocks, and how politicians and local customs may impact households’ behavior in Sub-Saharan Africa. Nina has assessed the relationship between risk aversion, rainfall variability and demand for inorganic fertilizer among smallholders in Ethiopia, whether farm households in Tanzania are able to protect their agricultural yield and children’s health from drought, and whether they are more or less able to respond based on past shock experience. She has also investigated to what extent the allocations of fertilizer vouchers from a Malawian fertilizer subsidy program were altered in line with electoral goals. Lastly, the thesis studies the education cycle for children in four countries in southern Africa, and where Nina has focused on the role of the bride price custom in explaining the observed patterns.