From food crisis to nutrition: challenges and possibilities in Ethiopia’s nutrition sector

Abstract

The history of nutrition policy and implementation in Ethiopia is, so far, largely a history of dealing with recurrent emergencies. These crises have historically tended to interact with political change and disruption and have involved large-scale intervention by international donors – factors which have led to a unique interplay of international attention, donor-government interaction and domestic politics centring around emergency feeding. Meanwhile, a continuing and complex landscape of long-term malnutrition underlies these periodic crises, related to food insecurity, lack of universal coverage and other factors. This report aims to deal with the latter situation, chronic malnutrition, and the programmes and structures conceptualised and created to combat it. The report therefore focuses on stunting and underweight prevalence rather than wasting, which indicates acute malnutrition. It addresses chronic malnutrition as separately as possible from food emergencies, which do not involve preventive work and therefore involve different actors and structures in their governance.

The underlying premise of the study is that improved nutrition outcomes are likely to take place where policy goals are well aligned with observable government commitment, and where there is coordination between multiple stakeholders around complex and multidimensional policy and implementation challenges. The study looks at three main dimensions of nutrition governance: intersectoral coordination on the part of government, donor and other high-level bodies; vertical coordination within the country’s nutrition policy and implementation systems, and the modes of funding that are negotiated through, and used to implement, interventions. It also looks at how monitoring and data systems may support or undermine these forms of coordination and organisation.

Citation

Taylor, L. From food crisis to nutrition: challenges and possibilities in Ethiopia’s nutrition sector. Institute of Development Studies (IDS), Brighton, UK (2012) 22 pp. [Analysing Nutrition Governance:Ethiopia Country Report]

From food crisis to nutrition: challenges and possibilities in Ethiopia’s nutrition sector

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