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Promoting economic diversification and decent rural employment towards greater resilience to food price volatility






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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Rural Social Protection - Promoting resilient livelihoods and the economic potential of the rural poor and vulnerable 2019
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    Three-quarters of the world’s poorest and most undernourished people live in rural areas. They are predominantly family farmers (including youth, fishers and foresters) with few to no assets, engaged in low-quality, low-paid labour, dependent on agriculture and natural resources for their livelihoods. They struggle to access social and financial services, infrastructure, markets or innovative technologies and practices, preventing advancement to more efficient, sustainable and productive livelihoods. They are particularly vulnerable to economic, climatic and conflict-related risks and shocks. Such shocks can have devastating impacts on income and livelihoods, and push people into negative coping strategies, such as the sale of productive assets, over-deforestation or cutting the quality of children’s diets, exacerbating the cycle of food insecurity and poverty. Women and girls face extra challenges due to gender-related inequalities. FAO is working to support governments and key stakeholders in expanding basic social-protection coverage to protect the world’s poorest and most marginalized. Access to social protection has not only been proven to keep people from hunger and extreme poverty, but can also enhance their livelihood options, most of which are agriculture-related.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    Women's resilience to food price volatility: A policy response 2014
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    In a high and volatile food price setting, two aspects determine rural women’s ability to absorb and respond to shocks: the inequalities that create a gender gap in rural development and women’s traditional roles in society and the household. This discussion paper points to these two aspects that, in general terms, reduce women’s ability to cope with food price volatility. Rural women, traditionally responsible for providing food and health in the household, face major constraints in fulfilling their roles, rendering them more vulnerable to food price spikes. Major recommendations include building on rural women’s resiliency and mitigating negative coping strategies by reducing gender inequalities in rural development, and by providing safety nets that are appropriately designed to address rural women’s needs and limitations. Gender gaps in rural development refer to those in access to resources, better-paying jobs, infrastructure, public services, agricultural extension and technologies, as well as gaps in the levels of participation in farmers’ organizations and other public institutions. Better design in safety nets and other social protection programmes involves including mechanisms that are culturally sensitive, that reduce women’s time burden, and that provide the necessary transportation, child-care facilities, and other services and mechanisms to ensure their participation. Gender-transformative approaches in the implementation of p olicies and programmes, including capacity development on gender roles for the household as a whole, are essential for ending discrimination against women, which hinders their economic and social empowerment. Additional areas of research include gender-differentiated impacts of high food prices and volatility, both at the individual and household levels, and the effectiveness of safety nets and other social protection programmes designed to address rural women’s specific needs.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    Food price spikes, increasing volatility and global economic shocks
    coping with challenges to food security in Asia
    2012
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    Asia is not only the most populous and the most economically vibrant region in the world today, it is also home to the largest number of poor and food insecure people in the world. Improving and sustaining food security in Asia poses formidable challenges in an increasingly unstable global economic environment. During the past five years the region has had to confront two sharp price spikes (in 2007-08 and 2010-11) and the impact of the global economic crisis that followed the global financial c risis of 2008. Though Asia coped with these huge shocks without a slide into large scale food insecurity, it is clear from recent developments in global food markets and the ongoing turmoil in the global economy that there is no room for complacency. How Asian countries coped with these multiple crises are an important source of policy lessons and guidance. This publication provides a synthesis of country studies in Asia - Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Nepal, the Philippines, Sr i Lanka, Thailand and Viet Nam - with a view towards analyzing the nature, outcomes and effectiveness of particular policy responses. It examines the extent to which immediate and longer term food security issues were addressed in programmes undertaken to cope with the crises and the lessons that have emerged for countries, as well as for regional and global cooperation to meet food security challenges.

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