Excerpted from the Foreword to the book written by Per Pinstrup-Andersen
The new book edited by Matthias Kalkuhl, Joachim von Braun, and Maximo Torero, is devoted to the stability dimension of food security and in particular the causes, consequences, and remedies related to extreme events in food markets. Volatility is a measure of risk and uncertainty which, in turn, is the antagonist of security. Price volatility is an intrinsically market-related economic concept. The economics of this book is, however, carefully embedded into the political, agricultural, climate, and nutritional domains. This makes the book an important contribution for the ongoing political agenda of the international community to reduce undernutrition and enhance food and nutrition security.
The concept of food security centers on the individual and its capability to satisfy basic nutrition and health needs. Consequently, the impact of market volatility on households is the subject of empirical analyses in several countries that were highly exposed to the international price shock in 2008. Besides household, farmers, traders, and communities deal with volatile prices at the local level and develop strategies to cope with volatility and reduce its negative impacts. By combining microeconomic and macroeconomic analyses, the book provides a comprehensive perspective on the manifold interactions of markets, people, and policymakers.
The book is outstanding in its methodological diversity and wide sectorial and geographical range. The contributions range from descriptive, empirical, and computational economic to simulation-based works. As such, it is a must-read book to guide researchers and research-oriented practitioners in governments, NGOs, and international organizations as well as students of agricultural, food, and nutrition policy.
Analyzing Food Price Volatility and its Implications for Food Security and Policy is one of the most comprehensive and interesting collections of applied state-of-the art research on food security, risk, and uncertainty, and it will influence the research and action agendas for many years to come.
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The work presented in this book is the result of intensive research cooperation between the Center for Development Research (ZEF) and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and their research partners all over the world. The CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions, and Markets (PIM) was one of the funders of this work.
The book is published with open access and distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial 2.5 License.