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Being with donkeys: insights into the valuing and wellbeing of donkeys in central Ethiopia

Geiger, Martha, Hockenhull, J., Buller, H., Engida, Gebre.T, Jemal Kedir, M., Goshu, L., Getachew, M., Banerjee, A., Burden, F.A. and Whay, H. R. (2023) Being with donkeys: insights into the valuing and wellbeing of donkeys in central Ethiopia. Society and Animals, 68 (9). pp. 1-29. ISSN 1568-5306

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Identification Number: 10.1163/15685306-bja10134


This paper explores the interwoven lives of donkeys and the people who depend on them for their livelihoods in central Ethiopia. Drawing on data from 12 participatory workshops, insights were elicited into the ways human co-workers value and treat their donkey co-workers. Methodologically, Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) and Appreciative Inquiry (AI) techniques were merged to explore the complex and multi-dimensional contributions donkeys make to participants' lives. Findings reveal working with donkeys can make the difference between destitution and modest survival, but societal perception of donkeys as low-status animals has an impact on their owners' lives and donkey wellbeing. This research contributes empirical insights on the valuing of donkeys and enables a deepened understanding of human-donkey relations. The combination of PRA and AI in the methodology demonstrates how to formulate a compassionate and empathetic approach for exploring donkey value and wellbeing with marginalized groups.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2023 The Author(s)
Divisions: ?? FLIA ??
Subjects: S Agriculture > SF Animal culture
Date Deposited: 01 Jun 2022 13:33
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2024 17:51

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