How to study livelihoods: Bringing a sustainable livelihoods framework to life

This paper does not attempt to offer a critique or replace or modify the sustainable livelihoods conceptual framework – work which has been adequately done by others. It simply offers a practical research guide that can help to bring existing Sustainable Livelihoods Frameworks to life. There is no single correct way to study livelihoods. Ideally, more livelihoods research would consist of longer-term longitudinal studies, which would be far more effective at capturing the dynamics of change and the unfolding story of livelihood choices made and acted out. Whatever choices are made, this paper suggests one way to use the SLF in a relatively straightforward but sophisticated way in order to build a more solid understanding of people’s livelihoods.