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Measuring Food Security Using Respondents’ Perception of Food Consumption Adequacy

Author

Listed:
  • Mauro Migotto
  • Benjamin Davis

    (Agricultural and Development Economics Division, Food and Agriculture Organization)

  • Gero Carletto

    (Agricultural and Development Economics Division, Food and Agriculture Organization)

  • Kathleen Beegle

Abstract

Food security is a complex and multi-dimensional phenomenon. As such, its measurement may entail and benefit from the combination of both “qualitative-subjective” and “quantitative-objective” indicators. Yet, the evidence on the external validity of subjective-type information is scarce, especially using representative household surveys. The aim of this paper is to compare information on self-perceived food consumption adequacy from the subjective modules of household surveys with standard quantitative indicators, namely calorie consumption, dietary diversity and anthropometry. Datasets from four countries are analyzed: Albania, Madagascar, Nepal and Indonesia. Simple descriptive statistics, correlation coefficients, contingency tables and multivariate regression show that the “subjective” indicator is at best poorly correlated with standard quantitative indicators. The paper concludes that while subjective food adequacy indicators may provide insight on the vulnerability dimension of food insecurity, they are too blunt an indicator for food insecurity targeting. An effort towards developing improved subjective food security modules that are contextually sensitive should go hand in hand with research into how to improve household survey data for food security measurement along other dimensions of the phenomenon, particularly calorie consumption.

Suggested Citation

  • Mauro Migotto & Benjamin Davis & Gero Carletto & Kathleen Beegle, 2005. "Measuring Food Security Using Respondents’ Perception of Food Consumption Adequacy," Working Papers 05-10, Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO - ESA).
  • Handle: RePEc:fao:wpaper:0510
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Carlo Azzarri & Gero Carletto & Benjamin Davis & Alberto Zezza, 2006. "Monitoring Poverty Without Consumption Data : An Application Using the Albania Panel Survey," Eastern European Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(1), pages 59-82, February.
    2. Ruel, Marie T., 2002. "Is dietary diversity an indicator of food security or dietary quality?," FCND discussion papers 140, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    3. Michael Lokshin & Nithin Umapathi & Stefano Paternostro, 2006. "Robustness of subjective welfare analysis in a poor developing country: Madagascar 2001," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(4), pages 559-591.
    4. Gero Carletto & Alberto Zezza, 2006. "Being poor, feeling poorer: Combining objective and subjective measures of welfare in Albania," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(5), pages 739-760.
    5. Menno Pradhan & Martin Ravallion, 2000. "Measuring Poverty Using Qualitative Perceptions Of Consumption Adequacy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(3), pages 462-471, August.
    6. Oded Stark & J. Taylor, 1989. "Relative deprivation and international migration oded stark," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 26(1), pages 1-14, February.
    7. Hoddinott, John & Yohannes, Yisehac, 2002. "Dietary diversity as a food security indicator," FCND discussion papers 136, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    8. Nord, Mark, 2005. "Measuring U.S. Household Food Security," Amber Waves, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, April.
    9. Maxwell, Simon, 1996. "Food security: a post-modern perspective," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 155-170, May.
    10. Morris, Saul Sutkover & Calogero, Carletto & Hoddinott, John & Christiaensen, Luc J. M., 1999. "Validity of rapid estimates of household wealth and income for health surveys in rural Africa," FCND discussion papers 72, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    11. Ravallion, Martin & Lokshin, Michael, 1999. "Subjective economic welfare," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2106, The World Bank.
    12. Gero Carletto & Benjamin Davis & Marco Stampini, 2005. "Familiar Faces, Familiar Places: The role of family networks and previous experience for Albanian migrants," Working Papers 05-03, Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO - ESA).
    13. Tarp, Finn, et al, 2002. "The Robustness of Poverty Profiles Reconsidered," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, pages 77-108.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sonia, Akter & Syed Abul, Basher, 2013. "The impacts of the global food and financial crises on household food security and economic well-being: evidence from Bangladesh," MPRA Paper 47859, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Renuka Mahadevan & Vincent Hoang, 2016. "Is There a Link Between Poverty and Food Security?," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 128(1), pages 179-199, August.
    3. Asadul Islam & Chandana Maitra & Debayan Pakrashi & Russell Smyth, 2016. "Microcredit Programme Participation and Household Food Security in Rural Bangladesh," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(2), pages 448-470, June.
    4. Carlo del Ninno & Bradford Mills, 2015. "Safety Nets in Africa : Effective Mechanisms to Reach the Poor and Most Vulnerable," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 21369.
    5. World Bank, 2009. "Niger : Food Security and Safety Nets," World Bank Other Operational Studies 18550, The World Bank.
    6. Dabalen, Andrew L. & Paul, Saumik, 2014. "Effect of Conflict on Dietary Diversity: Evidence from Côte d’Ivoire," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 143-158.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Food security; Qualitative indicators; Quantitative indicators; Household surveys; Subjective perceptions of food adequacy.;

    JEL classification:

    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • O57 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Comparative Studies of Countries
    • C19 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Other
    • C81 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data; Data Access

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