J. Terrence McCabe
Professor
(Ph.D. • SUNY-Binghamton • 1985)

HALE 440

Office Hours
By appt.

My research focuses on livelihood strategies and decisions relating to land use among the pastoral peoples of Eastern Africa. I’ve spent nearly 30 years engaged in this research mostly with the Turkana of northern Kenya and the Maasai of northern Tanzania. Most recently I’ve been conducting research on the process of livelihood diversification among the Maasai, including the adoption of cultivation and rural-urban migration. Currently I am Principal Investigator on a project comparing the social, economic, and ecological impact of parks on adjacent communities with field sites in Tanzania, Uganda, Namibia and Botswana. Most of this work has been funded by the National Science Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation. My book, Cattle Bring Us to Our Enemies: Turkana Ecology, History and Raiding in a Disequilibrium System won the 2005 Julian Steward award for the best book written in the previous year in ecological and environmental anthropology.

Selected Publications:

  • McCabe, J. Terrence. “Pastoralist Ecologies.” In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Anthropology. Ed. Mark Aldenderfer. New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming.
  • 2020. ​Quandt Amy, Salerno Jonathan Neff, Jason, Baird Timothy, Herrick Jeffrey, McCabe J. Terrence, Xu Emilie, Harter, Joel. Mobile phone use as associated with smallholder agricultural productivity in Tanzania, East Africa. Plus One August: 1-16
  • ​2020. Summers, Kelly; Baird, Timothy: Woodhouse, Emily; Christie, Marie Elisa; McCabe, J. Terrence; Terta, Felista; Peter, Naomi.  Mobile phones and women's empowerment in Maasai communities: How men shape women's social relations and access to phones. Journal of Rural Studies. Vol.77:126-137.
  • ​2020. McCabe, J. Terrence, Leslie, Paul, Davis Alicia. The Emergence of the Village and the Transformation of Traditional Institutions: A Case Study from Northern Tanzania.  Human Organization: Volume 79, Issue 2
  • ​2020. McCabe, J. Terrence and Quandt, Amy. Drought: A Challenge to Livelihoods, Sustainability, and Resilience. In: The Angry Earth II. Oliver-Smith, Anthony and Hoffman Susanna eds. Routledge. Pp. 212-226
  • ​2019. Quandt, Amy, Neufeldt, Henry, & McCabe, J. Terrence.  Building livelihood resilience: What role does agroforestry play? Climate and Development, 11(6), 485-500.
  • ​2019. McCabe, J. Terrence. Comment on Moritz, Mark et al. Comparative Study of Property Regimes in Africa Offers No Support for Economic Defensibility Model Current Anthropology: Vol.60, #5: 628-629.
  • ​2018. Linke, A.M., Witmer, F., O’Loughlin, J., McCabe, T.J., and J. Tir (2018). The consequences of relocating in response to drought: human mobility and conflict in contemporary Kenya. Environmental Research Letters 13(9) 094014
  • ​Woodhouse, Emily, McCabe, J. Terrence. Well-being and conservation: diversity and change in visions of a good life among the Maasai of northern Tanzania. Ecology and Society. 23 (1) 4
  • ​2018. Linke, Andrew M., Witmer, Frank D. W., O'Loughlin, John, McCabe, J. Terrence, & Tir, Jaroslav.  Drought, local institutional contexts, and support for violence in Kenya. Journal of Conflict Resolution, 62 (7) 1544-1578
  • ​2017. Quandt, Amy, McCabe, J. Terrence. “You can steal livestock but you can’t steal trees”: the livelihood benefits of agroforestry during and after violent conflict. Human Ecology vol.45, #4: 463-473
  • ​2017. Quandt, Amy; Neufeldt, Henry; McCabe, J. Terrence.  The role of agroforestry in building livelihood resilience to floods and droughts in semi-arid Kenya. Ecology and Society. 22 (3): 10
  • 2017. Linke, Andrew; Witmer, Frank; O’Loughlin, John; McCabe, J. Terrence; Tir, Jaroslav. Drought, Local Institutional Context, and Support for Violence in Kenya.   Journal of Conflict Resolution. April
  • ​2017. Woodhouse, Emily; Homewood, Katherine m.; Beauchamp, Emile; Clements, Tom; McCabe, J. Terrence; Wilkie, David; Milner-Gulland, E.J. Understanding Human Well-Being for Conservation: A Locally Driven, Mixed Methods Approach. In: Decision-Making in Conservation and Natural Resource Management. Bunnefiel, Nils; Nicholson, Emily and Milner-Gulland eds. Cambridge; Cambridge University Press. Pp. 97-124
  • ​2015. Woodhousehouse, Emily; Homewood, Katherine, Beauchamp, Emilie; Clements, Tom; McCabe, J. Terrence; Wilke, David; Milner-Guilland, E. J. Guiding principles for evaluating the impacts of conservation on human wellbeing. Philosophical Transaction of the Royal Society B.
  • ​2015. Linke, Andrew; O’Loughlin, John; McCabe, J. Terrence; Tir, Jaroslav; Witmer, Frank.   Rainfall Varialibity and violence in rural Kenya: Investigating the effects of drought and the role of local institutions with survey data. Global Environmental Change: # 34: 35-47
  • ​2015. Galvin, K., Boone R. And McCabe, J. Terrence. Transitions in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area: The story of Cultivation and Conservation. Chapter in Senrengeti IV ( Sinclair, A. R. E., Metzger,K., Mduma, S., Fryxell, J. Eds). University of Chicago Press. Pp: 483-512
  • ​Hampson, K., McCabe, J. Terrence., Estes, A., Hoare, R., Kissui, B., Ogutu, J., Ikanda, D., Rentsch, D., Cuthbert, B., Malugu, L., Masanga, E. & Cleaveland, S. C. 2015.   Living in the Serengeti ecosystem: human-wildlife conflict and coexistence. Chapter in Senrengeti IV (Sinclair, A. R. E., Metzger,K., Mduma, S., Fryxell, J. Eds.). University of Chicago Press. Pp: 607-648
  • ​2014. McCabe, J. Terrence. Smith, Nicole. Leslie, Paul. Telligman, Amy.  Livelihood Diversification through Migration among a Pastoral People: Contrasting Case Studies of Maasai in Northern Tanzania. Human Organization. Vol.73, # 4: 389-400
  • ​2014. Miller Brian, Leslie Paul, McCabe J. Terrence. Coping with Natural Hazards in a Conservation Context: Resource-Use Decisions of Maasai Households in Recent and Historical Droughts. Human Ecology: 42: 753-768
  • 2013. Leslie, Paul and McCabe, J. Terrence. Response Diversity and Resilience in Social-Ecological Systems. Current Anthropology Vol. 54, No. 2: 114-143. PDF
  • 2011. Greiner, C., Bollig, M., and McCabe, J. Terrence. Notes on Land-based Conflicts in Kenya’s Arid Areas. Africa Spectrum Vol. 46, No. 3: 77-81.
  • 2010. McCabe, J. T., Leslie, P. and DeLuca, L. Adopting Cultivation to Remain Pastoralists: the diversification of pastoral livelihoods in northern Tanzania. Human Ecology Vol. 38, No. 3: 321-334.
  • ​2009. Baird, T. D., Leslie, P. and McCabe, J. Terrence. Effect of Conservation on Local Perceptions of Risk and Behavioral Response. Human Ecology Vol. 37, No. 4: 463-474.
  • 2006. De Vries, D. H., P.W. Leslie, and J.T. McCabe. Livestock acquisition dynamics in nomadic pastoralist herd demography: a case study among Ngisonyoka herders of South Turkana, Kenya. Human Ecology  Vol 34, #1: 1-25.
  • 2004. Cattle Bring Us to Our Enemies: Turkana Ecology, History, and Raiding in a Disequilibrium System. University of Michigan Press.
  • 2004. May, Ann and J. Terrence McCabe. City Work in a Time of AIDS: Maasai Labor Migration in Tanzania. Africa TodayVol 51, No. 2: 3-32.
  • 2003. McCabe, J. Terrence (guest editor).  Anthropology and Sustainability. Human Organization Vol. 62, no.31.
  • ​2003. McCabe, J. Terrence. Towards an Anthropological Understanding of Sustainability: A Preface. Human Organization. Vol. 62, no. 3: 91-92.
  • 2003. McCabe, J. Terrence. Sustainability and Livelihood Diversification among the Maasai of Northern Tanzania. Human Organization. Vol. 62, no 3: 100-111.
  • 2003. McCabe, J. Terrence. Disequilibrial Ecosystems and Livelihood Diversification among yhe Maasai of Northern Tanzania: Implications for Conservation Policy in Eastern Africa. Nomadic Peoples Vol. 7, No. 1, pp.74-91.
  • ​2002. McCabe, J. Terrence. Conservation with a Human Face? Lessons from 40 years of Combining Conservation and Development in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Tanzania. In Displacement, Forced Settlement and Conservation. Dawn Chatty ed. Oxford: Berghahn Books pp.61-76.
  • 1999. Fratkin, Elliot and McCabe, J. Terrence (guest editors). East African Pastoralists at the Crossroads. Special Edition of the Journal Nomadic Peoples Vol. 3, No. 2.
  • 1985. Dyson-Hudson, R. and J.T. McCabe. South Turkana Nomadism: Coping with an Unpredictably Varying Environment. Human Relation Area Files Books, 378 pages.

Graduate Studies Information

Terry's research focuses on livelihood strategies and decisions relating to land use among the pastoral peoples of Eastern Africa. Terry has spent nearly 30 years engaged in this research mostly with the Turkana of northern Kenya and the Maasai of northern Tanzania. Most recently he has been conducting research on the process of livelihood diversification among the Maasai, including the adoption of cultivation and rural-urban migration. Currently, Terry is a Principal Investigator on a project comparing the social, economic, and ecological impact of parks on adjacent communities with field sites in Tanzania, Uganda, Namibia and Botswana. Most of this work has been funded by the National Science Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation. Terry's book, Cattle Bring Us to Our Enemies: Turkana Ecology, History and Raiding in a Disequilibrium System won the 2005 Julian Steward award for the best book written in the previous year in ecological and environmental anthropology.

Research Interests

  •     Ecological Anthropology
  •     Pastoral Nomadism
  •     Demography and Land Use Change
  •     Economic Development
  •     Arid Lands
  •     Conservation
  •     Sub-Saharan Africa
  •     East Africa