Workpackage 1

Causes of hunger and poor diets


This research area deals with the role concepts and indicators regarding food security. C
urrent concepts of food security and indicators fall short in their economic dimension, while at the same time food prices, non-food prices and income have been identified as key factors for food and nutrition security.

Research set up and objectives

This research develops an interdisciplinary framework integrating the different concepts of food and nutrition security. Research identifies short-run (such as volatility) and long-run indicators, and a series of short and long-term as well as structural drivers of food and nutrition security at the global, national and household levels. The aim is to set up a framework that improves understanding of how various factors may affect FNS.

Research approach

The framework will be operationalized by a set of practical indicators, which not only include standard indicators (such as FAO and WHO measures of hunger and malnutrition) but also dimensions that have been ignored or undervalued so far. These indicators include e.g.: insufficient dietary intake, deficits in mother and child care, economic and ecological conditions, food demand and supply, including spillover effects from energy and feed markets, climate change, water management, and financial markets.


FOODSECURE working paper no.1 

FOODSECURE working paper no.5


Nathalie Francken
Katholieke Universiteit (KU) Leuven, Belgium,

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. 290693