Hungry Cities Partnership project researchers will be presenting their work at an international workshop in Kingston, Jamaica in April.
The Commonwealth Geographic Bureau Workshop will be hosted by the University of the West Indes April 14 -17, 2015. Hungry Cities Partnership collaborator Dr. Elizabeth Thomas Hope will chair the panel titled: HUNGRY CITIES: FOOD INSECURITY, VULNERABILITY AND GOVERNANCE
The panel will frame overall issues of food system governance and food insecurity in hyper-urbanized cities and will present specific research results from work in Maputo, Mozambique, and Cape Town, South Africa, conducted under the Hungry Cities Partnership project.
Inês M. Raimundo (Eduardo Mondlane University), “Climate Change and Food Insecurity in the City of Maputo, Mozambique”: Over the last 40 years of independence, Mozambique has been in a constant and permanent state of transition due to events related to natural hazards, as well as to economic, social and political change. Instead of being a place of opportunity, it is a location of lack: lack of employment, lack of space for housing, and lack of land for urban agriculture. Consequently, more people face food insecurity with each passing day. According to Raimundo, Crush and Pendleton (2014), Maputo’s poor are relying more and more on food from informal markets. This paper will discuss the impact of climate change on the urban environment and its association with migration and food insecurity.
Mary Caesar and Jonathan Crush (Wilfrid Laurier University, Balsillie School of International Affairs), “Cape Town’s Urban Food Deserts”: This paper examines the case of Cape Town where supermarkets now command a significant market share and have been expanding into all areas of the city. After tracing the process of supermarket expansion in recent decades, the paper examines the nature of the food interactions between modern retail, the informal food economy and the food access of poor urban neighbourhoods. The concept of urban food deserts needs to be reformulated and redefined to fit African realities. Against this backdrop, the nature and drivers of Cape Town’s urban food deserts are explored.
Simron Singh (University of Waterloo), “Biomass Metabolism, Social Conflicts and Rising Food Insecurity in the Global South”: The paper will introduce the notion of biomass metabolism and empirically show the trends in biomass extraction, trade and consumption and its effects on the current food regime. Data is presented on the global scale, at regional (EU), national (India). The paper will summarise these findings and link them to land and biomass related conflicts and rising food insecurity in the developing world.
Gareth Haysom (University of Cape Town) “Food and the City: Urban Scale Food System Governance”: Food insecurity in urban areas, particularly in developing countries, is a persistent yet poorly understood phenomenon. Food security interventions have primarily focussed on ensuring food availability, a focus that has resulted in predominantly production oriented responses that presuppose a rural challenge, overlooking urban food insecurity challenges. Urban food governance innovations are particularly evident in the global north, with an increasing trend in South American cities. A gap exists in understanding food governance processes in growing Southern cities, in particular how these processes intersect with a wider discourse on food system change. This presentation draws on an analysis of emerging food governance trends and posits that a food lens offers opportunities to explore innovative forms of urban governance, participatory planning and citizen driven food policy formulation.
After the workshop, Hungry Cities Partnership staff will stay in Jamaica to train local partners in the innovative tablet-based survey being used by the project. They will work with a team of local enumerators to conduct the baseline survey of household food security in Kingston.