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Weather-index insurance as an adaptation strategy to climate change: a global insight

Adetoso A. Adetoro*, Mjabuliseni S. C. Ngidi, Temitope O. Ojo, Gideon Danso-Abbeam, Abiodun A. Ogundeji, Israel R. Orimoloye

*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: The effects of climate change and other weather-related disasters pose a high additional risk to the agricultural sector. This study carried out a rigorous assessment of empirical scientific research on weather-index insurance and its impact on smallholder maize farmers’ welfare and productivity. A three-stage analytical approach was used to analyse trends in related research, and available policy implications, between 1990 and 2019. Lessons from the top 10 most cited weather index insurance-related studies revealed that insurance can enhance outcomes, protect farmers’ investments, reduce rural poverty, especially during the event of negative strikes (such as drought). The findings showed that the developed countries (USA, Germany and China) have the most single and multiple country’s publications while developing countries (Zimbabwe and Kenya) have gained little attention through article citations in weather-index insurance research. The USA, the UK, Germany and South Africa were found to have a strong international collaboration network. The dominance of the developed countries was found to be linked to strong financial backup provided by the government to undertake studies in the field of weather-index insurance and climate change. While there is considerable global attention given to weather-index insurance, smallholder farmers’ welfare and maize productivity studies, the result reveals that there is still low adoption of the weather-index insurance adaptation strategy in the African countries. Thus, this study suggests that financial policy that supports and enhance weather-index insurance uptake are needed in developing countries to protect emerging farmers against weather risks and to improve farmers’ livelihoods.