Climate shocks, food and nutrition security: evidence from the Young Lives cohort study

Many people living in poor communities in Ethiopia, India (particularly, Andhra Pradesh), Peru and Vietnam experience climatic shocks such as droughts and floods, and are often faced with issues of food insecurity. 

Drawing on survey data from Young Lives, an international study of childhood poverty involving 12,000 children in four countries, this paper examines the effects of environmental shocks on food insecurity and children’s development. The data, from children and their families living in rural and urban locations in Ethiopia, the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, Peru, and Vietnam, provide information on the same individuals over time, allowing consideration of how earlier incidences of food insecurity and exposure to environmental shocks shape later outcomes

After introducing the data and methods, this report considers the reported incidence of environmental shocks in the studied communities, and, the reported incidence of household food insecurity. Following a review of previous Young Lives evidence on how households cope with these events, the report then analyse the effects of environmental shocks on households’ food security and on children’s nutritional outcomes, measured in terms of their height-for-age, or stunting.

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