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Food Security in Sub-Saharan Africa

Book/book chapter

Written by Simon Maxwell

Book/book chapter

Sub-Saharan Africa's persistent food insecurity and vulnerability to famine reflects failures of understanding as much as failures of interventions. Food Security in Sub-Saharan Africa aims to contribute towards an improved understanding for more effective food security policy. This book brings together eleven substantial chapters on critical food security issues, from the causes of food insecurity to planning and policy interventions and draws on a variety of disciplinary perspectives, from agricultural economics to nutrition. A feature of many contributions to this book is the way in which our deepening understanding of various aspects of food security has resulted in more sophisticated analytical frameworks and more complex recommendations for interventions. Most contributions reflect an evolution of thinking during the 1990s. Food insecurity is no longer seen simply as a problem of agriculture and a failure of food production at the national level, but instead as a failure of livelihoods to guarantee access to sufficient food at household level. This conceptual shift and related arguments are presented in a clear and accessible way for the non-specialist reader, and are illustrated with empirical data and case studies from across the sub-continent. The contributors and editors are all food security experts with long experience of research and advisory work in Africa and of teaching and training in their specialist areas.

Simon Maxwell and Stephen Devereux (eds)