Statistiques de l’alimentation et de l’agriculture

Alternative composite food security indexes: their use, value and limits


15 April 2014 – 14:30 to 17:00, FAO Headquarters, Austria Room

Food Security is a complex and multi-dimensional concept and there is growing recognition that no single indicator can adequately capture its complexity. In recent years various attempts have been made to build composite food security measures, to capture the various dimensions of food security in a comprehensive way.

The seminar will illustrate and discuss the experience of the Economist Intelligence Unit and the FAO Statistics Division in building composite food security indexes.

The Economist Intelligence Unit will present the Global Food Security Index (GFSI), developed in 2012, which attempts to measure the risks of food insecurity and provides a ranking for 105 countries (including high and low income countries) according to their level of food security. The index is based on a consistent framework and assesses food security across three dimensions: affordability, availability and utilization.

The FAO Statistics Division will describe the work done over the last two years to broaden food security measurement, including the first results of a suite of food security indicators presented in SOFI 2013. Thirty indicators are included in the suite, covering the four dimensions of food security: access to, utilization, stability and availability of food. Work is also under way to summarize and condense this broad indicator base into a single metric, the FAO Food Insecurity and Nutrition Index.

Four distinguished panelists will open the discussion presenting their views on composite indexes from an analytical, statistical, political and advocacy perspective. A moderated discussion from the floor will follow.

Dan Gustafson, FAO Deputy Director General


The Economist Intelligence Unit and DuPont on the Global Food Security Index (GFSI)

FAO statistics on the FAO Food Security and Nutrition Index

Panel Discussion
Enrico Giovannini, former Chief Statistician of the OECD, former Minister of Labour and Social Policies of Italy
Gerda Verburg, CFS Chair
Thomas Elhaut, Director Statistics and Studies for Development Division, IFAD
Marie Ruel, Director of Poverty, Health and Nutrition Division, IFPRI

Moderated discussion from the floor


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