Dawro is a Zone in the Ethiopian Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Region (SNNPR). it is named for the Welayta people, whose homeland lies in this Zone. Dawro is bordered on the south by Gamo Gofa, on the west by the Konta special woreda, on the north by the Gojeb River which defines its boundary with the Oromia Region, on the northeast by Kembata Tembaro, and on the east by Wolayita; the Omo River defines its eastern and southern boundaries. The administrative center of Dawro is Wacca.
Dawro has 111 kilometers of all-weather roads and 123 kilometers of dry-weather roads, for an average road density of 53 kilometers per 1000 square kilometers. High points in this Zone include Mount Holla (3720 meters).
Originally Dawro was part of the Semien (North) Omo Zone, and the 1994 national census counted its inhabitants as part of that Zone. However friction between the various ethnic groups in Semien Omo, which was often blamed on the Welayta for "ethnic chauvinism" and despite the efforts of the ruling party to emphasize the need to co-ordinate, consolidate, and unify the smaller ethnic units to achieve the "efficient use of scarce government resources", eventually led to the division of the Zone in 2000, resulting with the creation of not only the Dawro, but also the Gamo Gofa and Wolayita Zones and two special woredas.
Based on the 2007 Census conducted by the Central Statistical Agency of Ethiopia (CSA), this Zone has a total population of 489,577, of whom 249,263 are men and 240,314 women; with an area of 4,814.52 square kilometers, Dawro has a population density of 101.69. While 35,044 or 7.16% are urban inhabitants, a further 14 individuals are pastoralists. A total of 89,915 households were counted in this Zone, which results in an average of 5.44 persons to a household, and 86,642 housing units.
- "Detailed statistics on roads", SNNPR Bureau of Finance and Economic Development website (accessed 3 September 2009)
- Sarah Vaughan, "Ethnicity and Power in Ethiopia" (University of Edinburgh: Ph.D. Thesis, 2003), pp. 251 - 260
- Census 2007 Tables: Southern Peoples, Nations and Nationalities Region, Tables 2.1, 2.4, 2.5, 3.1, 3.2 and 3.4.