Surveys for more than 9,500 households were conducted in the growing seasons 2002/2003 or 2003/2004 in
eleven African countries: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ghana, Niger and Senegal in western Africa; Egypt in
northern Africa; Ethiopia and Kenya in eastern Africa; South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe in southern
Africa. Households were chosen randomly in districts that are representative for key agro-climatic zones
and farming systems. The data set specifies farming systems characteristics that can help inform about
the importance of each system for a country’s agricultural production and its ability to cope with
short- and long-term climate changes or extreme weather events. Further it informs about the location of
smallholders and vulnerable systems and permits benchmarking agricultural systems characteristics.