Income and Expenditures
- Objective: To understand livelihood strategies and vulnerability between men and women across class groups.
- Materials/Preparation: Flipchart, markers. Or local materials like cleared space on the ground and a stick to ‘write’ with.
- Participants: Men and women across different class groupings, but separately.
Next, participants ranked the relative importance of each source of income.
Drawing a circle on the ground, the facilitation team then asked participants which source of income was most important, and then plotted out how much of a household’s income could be attributed to that source.
They then proceeded to discuss the next most important source of income, and drew its proportional amount of income into the pie chart. The facilitators repeated these steps until each source of income and its relative contribution to household income was plotted into the pie chart.
Once each income source and its relative importance/contribution are established, the exercise then examines household expenditures.
Together participants list household expenditures, including savings. Participants then undergo the same process as outlined above to represent in proportion, household expenditures.
Facilitators then discussed a number of questions to analyze income and expenditures.
Questions Outlined from the SEAGA Field Handbook
- Are there many or few sources of income in the community? Which are the most important?
- How vulnerable are these sources of income to crisis, e.g. drought or disease?
- Do certain socio-economic groups have more vulnerable livelihoods than others? In other words, do certain people depend on only one or two sources of income, while others have diversified sources?
- Are there sources of income available to certain groups, e.g. older men, richer, high caste groups, that are not available to others, e.g. young women, poorer, low caste groups?
- How do women's income sources compare with men's?
- Are expenditures few and concentrated or spread out over several kinds of expenses?
- Which expenditures are common to nearly everyone?
- For each social group, what proportion of income goes to meeting basic needs, e.g. food, water, shelter, clothing, health care and education?
- For each social group, what proportion of income goes to savings? For productive investments, e.g. inputs, equipment, livestock?
- How do women's expenditures compare with men's?
- To cope with crisis, on what would people spend less? leisure activities? clothing? school fees? food? What are the implications for the future?
Materials: Idea cards, stones, markers.
Rather than a pie chart to conceptualize the importance of each income and expenditure source, this exercise can also be conducted through a matrix. With each income source listed or drawn on idea cards, the facilitator placed these cards in a row.
The facilitator then gave 50 stones to the group and asked them to distribute the stones next to each income source to reflect the proportion of household income attributed to each. Facilitators should count the stones paired with each source of income for the group.
Selling Excess Food Crops
- S Sharma (2009). Participatory Methods, Processes and Analyses: A handbook for identification of underlying causes of poverty and formulation of strategies. CARE Nepal.
- V Wilde (2001). Socio-Economic and Gender Analysis Program Field Handbook. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).