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Urban Food Security Literature Review: Concepts and Issues for Programming in the New Millennium, Tango, 2000

Urban Food Security Literature Review: Concepts and Issues for Programming in the New Millennium, Tango, 2000

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Published by Jeffrey Marzilli
This literature review examines urban food security from a holistic vantage point. The food security of urban poor households is dependent upon a diverse set of social,
economic, political, environmental, and cultural variables. After a brief overview of the conceptual foundation of food security and urban poverty, ten aspects of urban food
security are discussed. These ten variables differentiate the urban context from rural areas, and subsequently pose new challenges for food security programming.
This literature review examines urban food security from a holistic vantage point. The food security of urban poor households is dependent upon a diverse set of social,
economic, political, environmental, and cultural variables. After a brief overview of the conceptual foundation of food security and urban poverty, ten aspects of urban food
security are discussed. These ten variables differentiate the urban context from rural areas, and subsequently pose new challenges for food security programming.

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Published by: Jeffrey Marzilli on Aug 30, 2013
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02/22/2014

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Literature ReviewTANGO International
Urban Food Security:
Concepts and Issues for Programming in the New Millennium
Prepared byAndrew Gardner, M.A.
BARA/University of ArizonaSeptember 22, 2000
 
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
2
Executive Summary 3Urbanization in Developing Countries
8Urban Food Security 9Alleviating Urban Food Security 9
Understanding Food Security in the Urban Sector
12Urban Households 12Complex Urban Livelihoods 14Urban Women at Work 16Food Systems and Markets 18Coping with Market-based Vulnerability 20Land Use and Land Tenure 22Urban Health and Nutrition 23Infrastructure and the Social Sector 25Social Capital and Social Networks 26Urban Agriculture 28
Programming for the Urban Context
31Introduction 31Poverty and Urban Food Security 31Program Targeting and the Urban Poor 32Programming, Infrastructure, and Institutions 33Programming and Social Capital 35Social Data and Urban Programming 36
Bibliography
38
 
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Executive Summary
 The literature review that follows approaches urban food security from a holistic vantage point – the food security of the urban poor is dependent upon a diverse set of social,economic, political, environmental, and cultural variables. After a brief overview of theconceptual foundation of food security and urban poverty, ten aspects of urban foodsecurity are discussed. These ten variables, described briefly here, differentiate the urbancontext from rural areas, and subsequently pose new challenges for food security programming.First, the structure of urban households differs significantly from those found in the ruralsector:
Urban households are highly variable and may include various combinations of kin and non-kin members
 
While average household size is smaller in the urban context, dependency ratiosare often higher 
 
Urban households often include members that spend significant amounts of timein the rural sector – households may be split over the rural-urban divide
 
The poorest urban dwellers may have no house at all
 
Second, urban livelihood systems are complex:
Urban livelihood systems often comprise complex amalgamations of formal,informal, urban and rural employment
 
Employment in the formal sector – traditionally the foundation of most urbanlivelihood systems – is rapidly diminishing in scope
 
Conversely, the informal sector is growing rapidly in many developing cities
 
The informal sector poses a host of problems for food security programming
 
Third, urban women’s participation in income-generating activities is increasing rapidly
 Not only are more women participating in income-generating activities, but their rate of participation is increasing worldwide
 
Women’s increasing role in both formal and informal sector activities has notdiminished their labor obligations in the domestic zone
 
Some research suggests a correlation between increasing participation in incomegenerating activities and increasing child malnutrition
 
In general, women’s occupations are less secure than those of men
 
Women typically face problems in accessing jobs – their ability to participate inthe labor market is circumscribed by domestic obligations, cultural norms, landtenure systems, and a variety of other factors
 
Fourth, food systems and food markets in the urban sector are highly complex
Most food is purchased through the market, making analysis of market structure akey component of urban food security programming
 

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