The natural variation in climate around the world means that periods of severe shortfall of rainfall are inevitable, and some times occur on a large geographical scale. Human settlements have adapted to this reality in many different ways, including the development of agricultural systems that feature variously robust aspects in the face of drought. As climates change under the influence of modified atmospheric composition, it seems likely that many parts of the world will face increased incidence of drought and thus more challenging tasks for farm managers, managers of non- farm enterprises that are sensitive to drought, national policy makers and, last but not least, households in rural areas that are close to subsistence levels even in non-drought seasons. The agricultural economics profession must continue to contribute to better dealing with all these challenges.


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