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Economic and social factors of food insecurity: A study of individual vulnerability at the global level

Elena Grimaccia and Alessia Naccarato

No 275650, 2018 Seventh AIEAA Conference, June 14-15, Conegliano, Italy from Italian Association of Agricultural and Applied Economics (AIEAA)

Abstract: Food insecurity is one of the most important issues in determining a country's level of development, being at the core of sustainable growth. It affects all countries in the world, because even in countries with high current levels of income or food availability, the stability of food access and utilization may change over time. Comparisons of food insecurity in different economic and demographic subpopulations across countries provide a better understanding of the complex phenomenon and support policies aimed at improving the well-being of populations and alleviating hunger. Even though definitions and measures of food insecurity have been widely debated, both in the political and scientific spheres, for decades, until very recently data referring to a univocal measure of food insecurity was lacking at the global level. Only beginning in 2014 was the FAO Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES) used to perform a global survey, in 147 countries, with a sample of more than 150,000 individuals. This study presents an analysis of food insecurity based on information relating to individuals' own experience of their food insecurity, measured by FIES, together with other meaningful personal and household characteristics. The objective of this work is to assess which factors can determine individual food insecurity. Food insecurity presents marked differences depending on the level of development of the country under consideration. To take these factors into account, countries have been grouped together using a cluster analysis, based on the indicators forming the UN Human Development Index. The model, estimated both at the global level and for each group of countries, allows us to identify the economic, social, and demographic characteristics related to food insecurity, adding further evidence to the existing literature. Overall, the factors that have a significant impact on the risk of food insecurity include level of education, number of children in the household, and location of the household

Keywords: Agricultural; and; Food; Policy (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 16
Date: 2018-07-21
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DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.275650

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