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Food Security Twists and Turns: Why Food Systems need Complex Governance

Lang, T. and Ingram, J. (2014). Food Security Twists and Turns: Why Food Systems need Complex Governance. In: O'Riordan, T. and Lenton, T. (Eds.), Addressing Tipping Points for a Precarious Future. (pp. 81-103). British Academy Scholarship. ISBN 9780197265536


Tipping points and nudges are favoured metaphors of politicians seeking to make sense of complex topics. Food security is possibly the first major challenge for tipping points, combining the politics of population growth, diet, and the globalisation of food production and distribution with the limitations of soil, water, land use availability, and climate change. Food security begins with availability, access, and affordability, but quickly transforms into the economics and sociology of food production, transportation, consumption, and waste, along with diet and health. Ultimately food security is a microcosm of sustainable development, for it captures the paradox of surplus with the rigours of limits in a political and economic framework which cannot embrace either effectively, and which is leading to greater crises of food excess and famine in a world of growing inequality.

Publication Type: Book Section
Additional Information: This is a draft of a chapter that has been accepted for publication by Oxford University Press in the book Addressing Tipping Points for a Precarious Future edited by T. O'Riordan and T. Lenton, published in 2013. Reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Departments: School of Health Sciences > Healthcare Services Research & Management
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2015 14:16
Text - Accepted Version
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