Fortnightly Seminar Series
“The COVID-19 pandemic and agriculture and food security in developing countries with a focus on Africa”
Speaker: Dr. Kisan Gunjal
Title: “The COVID-19 pandemic and agriculture and food security in developing countries with a focus on Africa“
Abstract: Since the WHO declared COVID-19 a global pandemic in March 2020, it has gripped the world in two or more different waves in different regions. It has caused tremendous human suffering due to the disease itself and because it triggered the adoption of restrictive measures resulting in disrupted livelihoods for many. The pandemic and related control measures have the most impact on the livelihoods of vulnerable populations. The sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region, in particular, was already reeling under the tremendous burden of poverty, unemployment, malnutrition, and hunger, and is thus highly vulnerable to the ongoing direct and indirect impacts of COVID-19. Hence, this publication aims to analyze the direct and/or indirect impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Africa’s agri-food systems on various aspects as macroeconomic impact, agricultural production (crops, livestock, and fisheries sectors), markets and value chains, trade, and overall food security by providing a synthesis of studies and reports already published, and the relevant secondary data available.
This publication also provides criteria-based priority lists of countries using the composite index methodology, considering the four selected dimensions – the incidence and severity of COVID-19 pandemic, economic vulnerability aggravating factors, food security vulnerability aggravating factors, and the lack of coping capacity. The priority lists generated covering all African countries help focus on those requiring urgent attention from national and international communities for mitigation, recovery, and development.
Chair: Prof. Sangeeta Shroff
Date: 31st March 2022
Time: 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM
Venue: Seminar Hall
Dr. Gunjal is currently Senior International Consultant for the United Nations. He served as Food Security Economist at FAO’s in EST Division for 12 years (2002-2014). Before that, he was a professor at McGill University, Montreal, Canada for 20 years after obtaining Ph.D. from Iowa State University. Some of his recent consultancy assignments include – Food security impact of COVID-19 in Africa, impact of the Ebola Virus Disease in West Africa, and global implications of El Niño. He helped develop four e-learning courses on Agricultural Risk Management (ARM) for FAO/IFAD. He has worked as a Consultant with the World Bank (on Ethiopia and Mongolia), FAO, WFP, IFAD, and the private sector. Dr. Gunjal leads an NGO iREAMDev-Canada and India.