The dynamics of Household labor allocation to biogas production, farm and non-farm activities in central Uganda

Asha Nulanga (Corresponding Author), Johnny Mugisha, Peter N. Walekhwa, Jo Smith

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9 Citations (Scopus)
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Biogas is a sustainable energy that contributes to improved health and provides socio-economic benefits. However, biogas production has an impact on an essential household resource; labor. Therefore, households need to efficiently allocate labor to activities on the farm, off-farm and for biogas production. There is little empirical evidence on the factors influencing labor allocation within farm households, thus limiting biogas technology promoters from creating a favorable environment for uptake. This study fills this gap. Data were obtained from households with biogas digesters in central Uganda through a snow-balling sampling technique. A household model was used, and labor share equations were estimated by a Seemingly Unrelated Regression model. Own activity labor returns showed a positive relationship to the respective labor share, but cross-labor returns were negatively related. Female-headed households were more likely to allocate labor to biogas activities. Distance to water source had a negative impact on labor allocation to biogas activities, while the number of cattle owned by the household had a positive impact. Age of the household head and household size had a positive impact on labor allocation to non-farm activities. Household labor should be critically analyzed before investing in biogas digesters to increase the success of the technology.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)461-467
Number of pages7
JournalRenewable Energy
Early online date30 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019

Bibliographical note

This work was supported by funding from the African Union Commission to the Afri-flame network under the project: Adaptation of small-scale biogas digesters for use in rural households in Sub-Saharan Africa, grant number AURG/2/058/2012.


  • Biogas technology
  • labor
  • resources
  • up-take


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