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Transcript
Vulnerability:
Progress in food Security
Thomas E. Downing
Environmental Change Institute
Oxford
Vulnerability is…
 An aggregate measure of human
welfare that integrates environmental,
social, economic and political exposure
to a range of harmful perturbations.
The zephyrs of breeze that locate vulnerability
within the trade winds of globalisation and
climate change …



… demand our concern, before they become gales
… must be charted with new instruments spawned
by multiple disciplines and appropriate
technologies
… can be buffered through known strategies and
measures
Mozambique waiting for more rain
Workshop challenges
 How strong is current knowledge in this area?
 What do we best and least understand?
 What new research would be most
important?
 What major synthetic approaches have
evolved?
 Can vulnerability be internalised into broader
integrated assessments?
Outline
 Placing vulnerability in context:


Demand for information
Historical trends
 Examples and methodologies
 State of knowledge
 Conclusions (if any)
Demand for information
 Where are the vulnerable?

Targeting geographical region, socio-economic
class
 Who are vulnerable?

Relative vulnerability among households and
individuals
 What should be done?

Link to intervention/adaptation
 What is the future of vulnerability?

Exposure to global change, policy impacts
Uses of vulnerability assessments
Scale
Indices
National
comparisons of
vulnerability
International
Regional
Multiple dimension
profiles of regional
vulnerability
Profiles of vulnerable situations
or syndromes
Local
Ecosystems
Users
Water
Other
sectors
Food
UNFCCC:
Eligibility for
adaptation
funding
Regional
agencies:
Programme
design
Local offices:
Project evaluation
Health
Settlement
Historical perspective
 Exposure:

Food security --> Livelihood security
 VAM:


Hoovering --> Structured assessment
Single indicator --> Profiles --> Pathways?
 Rescaling

Regional --> Individual --> Globalisation
How can we assess
vulnerability, and its links to
global change and adaptive
capacity?
 Typologies of methods
 Comparisons of methods
 Agency and institutions
Operational vulnerability
assessment
 How do we develop a
consensual definition
and measurement of
vulnerability?
 How do we measure
vulnerability?
Typologies
 Single and multiple indices
 Expert decision support system
 Empirical
 Process model
Human Development Index
HDI Class
Missing (10)
Low
(45)
Medium (22)
High
(100)
Vulnerability profile for Ethiopia
Vulnerability Profile, Delanta Dawunt, Ethiopia
Low income crop (V High)
HH Size
1.1
Types of dairy
0.9
Middle income crop (High)
Crop/dairy (Mod)
Male laborers
Isolated, middle income crop (Mod)
High income dairy (Mod)
0.7
Livestock holdings
Total Income
0.5
0.3
0.1
Road Access
-0.1
Total Expenditure
Mid Altitude
Crops sales price in bad year
Crop land
Food Aid
Grazing land
An agent-based approach to
seasonal climate forecasting
Commercial
Farmers
Climate
Forecasters
Dissemination
Channels
•Represent actors as software agents
•Multi-level vulnerability
•Processes and pathways
•Emergence from interactions
Emerging
Sustainable
Farmers
Vulnerable
Farmers
State of knowledge
 Levels
 Processes
 Threats



Competing definitions
Common wisdom
Evidence based policy (interventions)
Scales of vulnerability
 Global:


 Stable assessment of global poverty
 Uncertain relations to global change and globalisation
 Regional/national:

 Stable ranking of relative vulnerability
 Local:


 Patchy, depending on assessments
 Slow response to emerging vulnerable groups
 Time scales


 Short term fluctuations and long term evolution
 Seasonal scales subject to famine early warning
Processes
 Human ecology of production:

 Well known, but connected to other scales
 Exchange economy and impoverishment:

 Extent of global linkages poor
 Political economy and empowerment:

 Fair understanding
 Nutritional status and interventions:

 Well understood
 Concatenation of exposure:


 Few studies across the range of exposure
 Difficult to generalise
Threats
 Environmental degradation, climate change
 Conflict
 Economic change: recession, hyperinflation
 Underdevelopment



 Pathways and mechanisms
? Relative risk
 Local realisation
Conclusions
ADDITIONAL SLIDES…
RISK SPACE
HAZARD
Risk is the overlay of hazard
and vulnerability
Disasters are the realisation
of risk
Both hazard and vulnerability
are changing
VULNERABILITY
Confidence in climate change
Mean Trends
Extremes
Projection
Temperature
Sea level rise
CO2
Heat waves
Lightning
Bounded
divergence
Regional
Precipitation
Risk
Surprise
High tides
North Atlantic
Drought
episodes
Precipitationin
tensity
Persistent
drought
Complex
Episodes
Major floods
Windstorms
Storm surge
Persistent
ENSO
Confidence in future climate change varies. Some elements can be projected--the
direction of change is known. For others, the sign of the change is not known, but
the range of projections is bounded reasonably well. For complex changes, our
knowledge is limited to approximate shifts in risks and potential for surprises.
Vulnerability is…
 about equity…linking climate change to
uneven development
 concerns people…begin with the
humanitarian concerns for vulnerable
socio-economic groups
 an integrating method…for targeting
adaptation
Priorities for adaptation
Mean Trends
Projection
Bounded
divergence
Risk
Surprise
Implement
adaptation
measures:
Water efficiency
Complex
Events
Plan adaptation strategies and
measures:
Coastal retreat
Extremes
Reduce vulnerability, monitor,
prepare:
Drought preparedness
Reduce
vulnerability:
Flood plain
restrictions
Worst case scenarios
Adaptation failure?
Emergency preparedness
Focus on the most vulnerable groups
 Sustainable livelihoods



Resource poor
Uncertain incomes
Marginalised
 In context



Institutional capacity
Governance
Infrastructure
Criteria for evaluating adaptation
 Apply criteria to relevant stakeholders
and vulnerable groups






Resilience and effectiveness
Strategic responses
Timing
Economic evaluation
Constraints
Conflicts
Adaptation strategies for water
Stakeholders
Conseq.
Vulnerable users

Consumers

Large-scale users

Private water
carriers

Antic.
Inst.
Ed’n.
Dev’t


?


River basin
agencies
?
Research
?
Ministries

Aid organisations
?







?


?
Evaluation of strategies in agriculture
Criteria
Reserves
Stakeholders
Aid agencies
Companies
Agro-tech
All
Vulnerable groups
?
Low income
Women
Resource poor
Multiple benefits
M
M
L
M
Specific to climate change
M
L
L
L
Effectiveness
M
M
H
H
Development
L
M
H
H
1-5
1-5
5-10
~5
Irreversible impacts
L
L
L
L
Initial investment
M
L
H
M
Many
Many
Producers
Many
Information
L
L
M
M
Technology
L
L
H
H
Socio-political
M
M
H
H
Planning horizon
Realisation of benefits
Trade
Technology
Aggregate
Dessication in the Sahel
 In the last 10 years long-term impacts of
droughts and famines of the 1970s in Sahel
became evident
 Major droughts in the past Century

1910-1916, 1941-1945, late 1960 with a peak in
1970s
 In the last 10 years long-term impacts of
droughts and famines of the 1970s in Sahel
became evident
Responses
 Wide range of coping strategies

bartering, migration, social welfare, formal insurance,
education, etc.
 Research and monitoring: Creation of CILSS in
1973
 Early warning systems
 Working with the human and drought-induced
stress on natural ecosystems
 Improved agricultural production technologies
(improved variety of millet and sorghum,
intensive cultivation techniques)
Boosting local capacities
 Creation of farmers cooperatives
 Small-scale NGOs and CBOs projects
 Integration of environmental rehabilitation to
development projects and programs
 Innovative techniques in soil and water
conservation
 Popular erosion control methods
 Agroforestry
Regional and national levels
 Improving and strengthening local
management and development
initiatives
 Building upon own skills, indigenous
knowledge and resources
 Assess long term trends
 Improving sustainable livelihood
systems
Cyclones and sea level rise
 Progressive coping capacity in
Bangladesh:




1 million deaths in 1960s
100,000 deaths in 1970s
10,000 deaths in 1980s
1,000 deaths in 1990s
 Aid can be effective