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Education for Rural People: A Neglected Key To Food Security

Author

Listed:
  • Pasquale De Muro
  • Francesco Burchi

Abstract

In the world there are approximately 800 million people who live in condition of food insecurity and illiteracy. This paper shows that education is a key to food security for rural populations in developing countries. Attention is drawn to rural areas because they are traditionally more disadvantaged by national educational policies. The theoretical foundation of this research is that being educated improves rural people’s capacity to diversify assets and activities, increase productivity and income, foster resilience and competitiveness, access information on health and sanitation, strengthen social cohesion and participation: these are all essential elements to ensure food security in the long run. The main findings of this research are the following: first, the association between food insecurity and primary education is very high, while it decreases progressively with basic, secondary, and tertiary education. Such a two-way relationship is expressed through graphical tools and correlation coefficients. Second, the econometric model shows that primary education is a crucial element to reduce food insecurity in rural areas, even when compared to other factors such as access to water, health, and sanitation. Concluding from this model, an increase of access to primary education by 100% causes a decrease of food insecurity by approximately 20% or 24% depending on the definition of food insecurity and its measurement. Finally, since in most of developing countries the majority of people live in rural areas, and since it is in these areas that the largest proportion of world poverty and hunger exists, we can conclude that education for rural people is a relevant tool for promoting overall national food security.

Suggested Citation

  • Pasquale De Muro & Francesco Burchi, 2007. "Education for Rural People: A Neglected Key To Food Security," Departmental Working Papers of Economics - University 'Roma Tre' 0078, Department of Economics - University Roma Tre.
  • Handle: RePEc:rtr:wpaper:0078
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    File URL: http://host.uniroma3.it/dipartimenti/economia/pdf/wp78.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Maxwell, Simon, 1996. "Food security: a post-modern perspective," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 155-170, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Maurice Mutisya & Moses W. Ngware & Caroline W. Kabiru & Ngianga-bakwin Kandala, 2016. "The effect of education on household food security in two informal urban settlements in Kenya: a longitudinal analysis," Food Security: The Science, Sociology and Economics of Food Production and Access to Food, Springer;The International Society for Plant Pathology, vol. 8(4), pages 743-756, August.
    2. Kelly, Jeri L. & Pemberton, Carlisle, 2016. "An Assessment of the Household Food Security Status and Local Foods Grown in Rural Bahamas," 2015 West Indies Agricultural Economics Conference, August 10-14 , 2015, St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands 243181, Caribbean Agro-Economic Society.
    3. Burchi, Francesco & De Muro, Pasquale, 2016. "From food availability to nutritional capabilities: Advancing food security analysis," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 10-19.
    4. Kelly, Jeri L. & Pemberton, Carlisle, 2016. "An Assessment of the Household Food Security Status and Local Foods Grown in Rural Bahamas," Farm and Business - The Journal of The Caribbean Agro-Economic Society, Caribbean Agro-Economic Society, vol. 8(1), July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Education; Food Security; Human Development; Cross-;

    JEL classification:

    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • Q18 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Policy; Food Policy
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • C31 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Interaction Models

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