Socioeconomic Impact of Establishment of University of Embu on Small Scale Farmers in Nthambo Sub-Location, Kenya
Akelo, Gogo, J.
Ngari, Cyrus, G.
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The University of Embu is one of the fast developing and recently chartered University in Kenya. It is located in Nthambo sub-location, which is an agricultural potential area. Universities establishment have considerable influence on the activities of community that stays around it. Despite the fact that several studies have been conducted on the socioeconomic impact of establishment of different Universities to the community they reside in, a research on the socioeconomic impact of establishment of University of Embu on small scale farmers in their agricultural activities have never been done. Given that the University of Embu has been established on the agricultural potential area, this study sought to investigate the impact of the establishment of University of Embu on agricultural resources and productivity, describe the community diversity and living standards of the community. Methodology used in this research was descriptive survey design and stratified random sampling technique obtaining a sample of 100 households which was proportionate to the population. Using SPSS software for cross-tabulation, the results indicated that: the rate of both livestock and crop production have been declining with supporting evidence of (60.2%) and (66%) of the households respectively, the community was diverse (87.2%) with majority being university students (68.1%), most of the small scale farmers had access to electricity connection (78.1%), even though farming activity remains main economic activity of community within the area, it has been declining from (95.3%) to (53.2%), business activities have increased from (3.5%) to (41.5%), most of the households (54.3%) have constructed rental houses majorly to earn more money (70.2%). The researchers recommend that Embu County government should adopt a policy such that the communities surrounding University of Embu must develop, implement and enforce mechanisms for effective preservation of productive agricultural land (i.e. Urban growth boundaries, purchase of development rights, exclusive agricultural zoning among others).