Multiple Food Security Research Grant Success in Economics

A $1m global research program in food security is being developed at the University of Adelaide.

Participants in this network from around the world will meet at the National Forum on Food Security to be held at the National Wine Centre on February 13th, 2012

University participants come from a number of its Faculties, Institutes and Centres with leadership from the Waite Research Institute.

The University’s School of Economics is also making an important contribution to the work, and its Head, Dr Mandar Oak, recently highlighted three major new projects.

Firstly, the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) has confirmed funding for $200k for the next 12 months for the project "Assessing farmer responses to climate change" in Vietnam and China.

  • The project will break down the impact of climate change by studying farmer responses, the extent to which the costs of those responses are exaggerated by various market failures and the ways in which those costs affect farmer choices of adjustment options. The output will be an understanding of how farmers might respond to opportunities for adjustment that follow from technological change, for example, ideas from other ACIAR projects which develop specific technical options that are expected to facilitate adjustment.
  • Led by Professor Christopher Findlay, other collaborating scientists include Dr Jikun Huang, Director, Centre for Chinese Agricultural Policy, CAS, Beijing and Dr Nguyen Do Anh Tuan, Research Manager, Centre for Agricultural Policy Hanoi, Vietnam.

Secondly, funded by AusAID with over $200k for 2012 is a partnership program on "Meeting food security goals with good policy".

  • The outcomes of this project will enhance the capability of policy makers in the APEC Region to offer advice on food security goals that is based on evidence and analysis and thereby promote the adoption of policy measures for food security goals which are consistent with international market conditions and to achieve those goals at least cost.
  • The organisations and countries involved are China: China Agricultural University; Indonesia: Centre for Agrifood Policy and Agribusiness Studies, Padjadjaran University; Philippines: College of Economics and Management, University of Philippines Los Banos; Thailand: Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Kasetsart University; Vietnam: Institute of Policy and Strategy for Agricultural and Rural Development (IPSARD).

Thirdly, the project on "Climate change, trade policies and food security: implications for Australia" is funded by the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) has been funded with over $600k until 2014.

  • The key objectives of this project are to provide a clearer understanding of the forces or drivers of global food market outcomes over the next two to four decades and of the uncertainties associated with them. It will also assist in prioritizing efforts to influence policy outcomes in such topical areas as climate change, R&D subsidies, restrictions on production and trade in products containing GMOs, transparency in foreign direct investment in global agriculture, and commercial diplomacy. In addition, it will help to ease concerns in the Australian community about the growing dependence of domestic consumers on imported foods as globalization proceeds, and about our ability to continue to enhance food security in poorer countries.
  • Led by Professor Kym Anderson, other participants are Dr Don Gunasekera, CSIRO Complex Systems Science and Dr Anna Strutt, Waikato Management School, NZ.
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