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McCabe, J. Terrence; Smith, Nicole M.; Leslie, Paul W.; & Telligman, Amy L. (2014). Livelihood Diversification through Migration among a Pastoral People: Contrasting Case Studies of Maasai in Northern Tanzania. Human Organization, 73(4), 389-400. PMCID: PMC4347807


This paper brings together over two decades of research concerning the patterns and processes of livelihood diversification through migration among Maasai pastoralists and agro-pastoralists of northern Tanzania. Two case studies, one from the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and the other from the Simanjiro plains, jointly demonstrate the complexity of migration within a single ethnic group. We analyze the relationship between wealth and migration and examine some of the consequences of migration for building herds, expanding cultivation, and influencing political leadership. We further argue that migration in Maasai communities is becoming a cultural norm and not only a response to economic conditions.

Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Human Organization


McCabe, J. Terrence
Smith, Nicole M.
Leslie, Paul W.
Telligman, Amy L.