Cash, Food or Vouchers in Urban and Rural Kenya? An Application of the Market Information and Food Insecurity Response Analysis Framework

22 Pages Posted: 18 May 2011

See all articles by Hope C. Michelson

Hope C. Michelson

Columbia University - Columbia Earth Institute

Erin Lentz

University of Texas at Austin - Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs

Rich Mulwa

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Mitchell Morey

American Institutes for Research

Laura Cramer

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Megan E. McGlinchy

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Christopher B. Barrett

Cornell University - Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management

Date Written: April 1, 2011

Abstract

This paper uses data on food market intermediation and on consumer behavior and preferences to clarify whether market-based cash and voucher programs are likely to prove effective for addressing food insecurity in rural and urban study sites in Kenya. The findings carry important implications for food security interventions by government and operational agencies. We find that context matters when undertaking a response analysis. Markets in surveyed urban settlements can respond better to a much larger injection of cash or vouchers than the surveyed rural areas can. Moreover, household vulnerabilities are associated with household preferences in different ways across the two sites. In rural areas, female headed households and households reporting a physical limit to market access strongly preferred food aid to cash or vouchers while in urban areas, households with these characteristics preferred the flexibility of cash or vouchers to food.

Keywords: food insecurity, Kenya, response analysis, urban food insecurity

Suggested Citation

Michelson, Hope C. and Lentz, Erin and Mulwa, Rich and Morey, Mitchell and Cramer, Laura and McGlinchy, Megan E. and Barrett, Christopher B., Cash, Food or Vouchers in Urban and Rural Kenya? An Application of the Market Information and Food Insecurity Response Analysis Framework (April 1, 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1844594 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1844594

Hope C. Michelson

Columbia University - Columbia Earth Institute ( email )

314 Low Library
535 West 116th Street, MC 4327
New York, NY 10027
United States

Erin Lentz

University of Texas at Austin - Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs ( email )

2300 Red River St., Stop E2700
PO Box Y
Austin, TX 78713
United States

Rich Mulwa

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Mitchell Morey

American Institutes for Research ( email )

1990 K Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006-1107
United States

Laura Cramer

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Megan E. McGlinchy

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Christopher B. Barrett (Contact Author)

Cornell University - Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management ( email )

315 Warren Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853-7801
United States
607-255-4489 (Phone)
607-255-9984 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://aem.cornell.edu/faculty_sites/cbb2/

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