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The role of time is a hot topic for the literature on resilience measurement. By definition resilience to food insecurity is a dynamic concept. Therefore the time frame of the analysis matters for identifying resilient households.
According to the conceptual framework of the FAO-Resilience Index Measurement and Analysis (RIMA II) approach, resilient households, when affected by a shock at time 1, suffer a reduction in their food security at time 2 but are able to (partially or totally) recover the loss in food security between time 2 and 3. Please see http://www.fao.org/3/a-i5665e.pdf at page 35 as a reference.
The dynamics of the food security is not easily addressed by an empirical point of view. There is still much to know on the role of: (i) the time span between the shock occurrence and the recovery, namely the time when the household bounce back to its previous food security level; (ii) the time span between the recovery and the occurrence of another shock; (iii) the effect of the second shock on food security reduction with respect the effect of the first shock.
In my view, the “test of time” matters in terms of understanding (i) the speed of recovery after the occurrence of the shock; (ii) the persistence on the comfortable level of food security after the shock occurrence; (iii) the learning capacity with respect to the history of the past shocks.
Households with a similar resilience capacity (based on observable characteristics as level of education, productive and non-productive assets, income-generating activities, etc.) may show heterogeneous speed of recovery, persistency in the comfortable zone after the shock occurrence and learning capacity.
Furthermore, the “test of time” matters for identifying households resilient over a long time period.
The household characteristics may explain why some households remain resilient over year while other households are not able to do that. An interesting working paper adopting the FAO-RIMA II methodology (http://www.fao.org/3/a-i5473e.pdf ) explores this topic in the case of Uganda. The analysis shows that a higher level of education of household members as well as the participation into self-enterprises characterize the households able to maintain a high resilience capacity over time.
Identifying the household characteristics that ensure long-lasting resilience capacity may have dramatically important implications for the policy makers!