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Assessing climate service needs In Kaffrine, Senegal: livelihoods, identity, and vulnerability to climate variability and change

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E.R. Carr (ed)
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For those whose livelihoods revolve around rain-fed agriculture, climate services have the potential to reduce precipitation- and temperature-related risks to agricultural production, boost agricultural yields by enabling appropriate crop and variety selections, and build resilience in rural populations by enhancing the food and income base of their livelihoods. To achieve these lofty potentials, climate services must deliver information that is salient, legitimate, and credible to those for whom these services are designed and to whom they are targeted. Further, it must be understood if and how new information is of value to these users. Information that is not actionable, which does not speak to farmer needs, or which lacks credibility relative to other sources of weather and climate information does not add value to their decision-making, and may even result in confusion around decision-making that reduces the efficacy of existing livelihoods strategies. In short, it is becoming clear that weather and climate information is not inherently valuable to those in rural agrarian contexts, but must be tailored to the specific needs of the users if it is to have a productive impact on their lives and livelihoods.