From food availability to nutritional capabilities: advancing food security analysis

Burchi, Francesco / Pasquale De Muro
External Publications (2016)

in: Food Policy 60/2016, 10-19


This paper has a threefold objective. First, it provides a comprehensive review of different approaches to analysing food security. Second, it highlights the added value provided by the capability approach and the human development paradigm. Third, it proposes a methodology to assess food security through this approach. Our proposal entails three basic steps: (1) analysis of food entitlements; (2) analysis of nutritional capabilities and (3) analysis of the capability to be food secure. In this way, we can move beyond income, entitlement or livelihood related frameworks, and identify the root causes of food insecurity. Food insecurity can be the result of a lack of education, health or other basic capabilities that constitute people’s wellbeing. This, therefore, allows situating the study within the broader area of wellbeing and development.

About the author

Burchi, Francesco

Development Economy


Further experts

Balasubramanian, Pooja

Social Economics 

Brüntrup, Michael

Agricultural Economy 

Dick, Eva

Sociologist and Spatial Planner 

Faus Onbargi, Alexia

Environmental and Sustainable Development Governance 

Gubbini, Emily

Social Science 

Malerba, Daniele


Rukundo, Emmanuel Nshakira

Development Economics 

Sakketa, Tekalign Gutu

Agricultural / Development Economics