Triggers of Farmer-Herder Conflicts in Ghana: A Non-Parametric Analysis of Stakeholders’ Perspectives

Stanley K. Dary, Harvey S. James, Asaah S. Mohammed


In Ghana, farmer-herder conflicts have become widespread and increasingly assume a violent dimension. Competition over access to and use of land and water resources is at the center of the conflicts. However, competition does not automatically result in conflicts. The conflicts are driven by triggering activities of both farmers and herders. This study identifies triggers of farmer-herder conflicts in the Upper West Region of Ghana and tests the level of agreement among key stakeholder groups on the triggers of these conflicts. This is an important step in determining approaches to farmer-herder conflicts prevention and resolution. The data were collected via focus group discussions of five key stakeholder groups: chiefs-traditional rulers, Fulani herdsmen-cattle owners, crop farmers, civic society-media, and government agencies. Fourteen triggers of conflicts were identified by stakeholders, with destruction of crops by cattle ranking as the most important trigger. In testing agreement among stakeholder groups on triggers of conflicts, only crop farmers, chiefs-traditional rulers and government agencies significantly agree on the triggers of conflicts. There is also moderate level of concordance when the ranking of triggers of conflicts by all five stakeholder groups are simultaneously considered. The results show farmer-herder conflicts are complex and preventing and /or resolving these conflicts require integrated approaches.

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Copyright (c) 2017 Stanley K. Dary, James Jr S. Harvey, Asaah S. Mohammed

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Sustainable Agriculture Research   ISSN 1927-050X (Print)   ISSN 1927-0518 (Online)  E-mail:

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