As conflict, climate shocks, and land/water degradation—the “triple challenge”—continue to exert increasing pressure upon fishing and farming livelihoods in many developing countries, a need exists to better understand how differential vulnerabilities undermine or amplify food security outcomes. In this study, we investigate how vulnerability to the “triple challenge” affect food security using an in-depth case study approach that merges social statistics and quantitative data analysis. We frame vulnerability using a combination of sensitivity, exposure, and adaptive capacity, and operationalize food security using the FAO Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES), which is an experience-based measure capturing the food access dimension of food security. We draw on survey data from 252 fishing and 251 farming households in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria and quantify the different components of vulnerability, deriving specific livelihood-related vulnerability scores. By merging and analyzing differential food security variables and vulnerability scores using ordered logistic models, we find that vulnerability to the “triple challenge” increases the probability of being in a severe food insecure state, particularly for households with a high dependency ratio. Parallel to this finding, we note that access to social capital and opportunities for livelihood diversification could drive gains in income, enhancing the capacity of households to attain a food-secure status in the face of recurrent instabilities. This study advances vulnerability literacy in food-insecure contexts and reveals ways to support populations on the frontline of interacting conflict, climate, and environmental crises.
Sustainable Development Goals
Onyenekwe, C. S., Okpara, U. T., Opata, P. I., Egyir, I. S., & Sarpong, D. B. (2022). The Triple Challenge: Food Security and Vulnerabilities of Fishing and Farming Households in Situations Characterized by Increasing Conflict, Climate Shock, and Environmental Degradation. Land, 11(11), 1982. https://doi.org/10.3390/land11111982