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The Evolving Sphere of Food Security$
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Rosamond L. Naylor

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199354054

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199354054.001.0001

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Creating Synergies between Water, Energy, and Food Security for Smallholders

Creating Synergies between Water, Energy, and Food Security for Smallholders

(p.153) 6 Creating Synergies between Water, Energy, and Food Security for Smallholders
The Evolving Sphere of Food Security

Jennifer A. Burney

Oxford University Press

Nearly 75 percent of the world’s poorest people live in rural areas and depend heavily on agriculture for their livelihoods. Globally, these households produce a large fraction of the world’s food, and yet they are perpetually some of the world’s most food insecure. How is so great an irony possible? This chapter examines food security for the world’s smallholder farmers, and the factors across space and time that continue to make lasting food security an elusive goal for many of them. Smallholder farmers are by no means a homogenous group, but understanding some of the common constraints they face offers some clues about policies and strategies that might more effectively change the odds for sustainable success in their favor. In particular, the chapter explores linkages to water and energy security across scales. Food security—both via production and entitlements—depends heavily on access to these two resources; thinking about food security from the perspective of energy and water also provides new insights into ways to break the cycle of low productivity that keeps many smallholder farmers mired in poverty.

Keywords:   smallholder farmers, poverty trap, irrigation, supply chains, Green Revolution, distributed energy

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