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Armed Conflicts and Food Insecurity: Evidence from Boko Haram's Attacks

Justin George, Adesoji Adelaja and Dave Weatherspoon

American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 2020, vol. 102, issue 1, 114-131

Abstract: More than half of the 815 million undernourished people in the world live in countries struggling with conflict, violence and fragility. Conflict can impact food security conditions by destroying agricultural production, distribution and markets, hindering economic growth and increasing unemployment levels. By spatially joining the general household survey (GHS) panel data for Nigeria with Boko Haram terrorist incident data, we estimate the impact of Boko Haram attacks on food security conditions. We find that an increase in conflict intensity, measured by number of fatalities, increases the number of days where the household had to (1) rely on less preferred foods, (2) limit the variety of foods eaten, and (3) limit the portion size of meals consumed. However, the number of days that households went without eating anything, a more severe measure of food insecurity, was not affected. The food consumption score is also negatively affected by conflict. We also find that the conflict‐driven food insecurity is mainly materialized through agricultural input and income shocks.

Date: 2020
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https://doi.org/10.1093/ajae/aaz039

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