Research Initiatives

Research Initiatives

Food Security and Food Sovereignty In the Middle East

The Food Security and Food Sovereignty in the Middle East research initiative is comprised of original, empirically-grounded investigations that collectively offer the most comprehensive study available to date on food security in the Middle East. Some of the major themes examined include the ascent and decline of various food regimes, urban agriculture, overseas agricultural land purchases, national food self-sufficiency strategies, distribution networks and food consumption patterns, and nutrition transitions and healthcare.

Food security is a technical term that relates at both the micro and macro levels to the economic, physical, and social access to sufficient food sources. Food security for a country or a region exists when all or most people within it can regularly access sufficient quantities of nutritious food. Food sovereignty is considered to be more of a political concept, and relates to the ownership of rather than access to food resources.

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  • Click here to read about the "Food Security and Food Sovereignty In the Middle East" Working Group Meeting I
  • Click here to read about the "Food Security and Food Sovereignty In the Middle East" Working Group Meeting II

As part of its Research and Scholarship initiatives, CIRS organizes several ongoing Working Groups that convene in Doha to examine a variety of international issues. The primary purpose of CIRS research initiatives is to fill in existing research gaps, and to contribute towards furthering knowledge on the prevailing issues related to security, economic stability, and the political realm of the region. Each of these projects involves some of the most prominent scholars of the Middle East and the Gulf region. Each scholar participating will be working on a specific sub-topic, under the overarching subject.

Working Group Meetings

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Zahra Babar and Suzi Mirgani, eds., Food Security in the Middle East (Oxford University Press/Hurst, 2014).

This Summary Report details the findings presented in the research initiative through working group meetings. The initiative is comprised of original, empirically-grounded investigations that collectively offer the most comprehensive study available to date on food security in the Middle East.

Summary Report

In 2010, CIRS launched a grants cycle on “Food Security and Food Sovereignty in the Middle East.” As part of this initiative, CIRS awarded five grants to support interdisciplinary projects that focus on examining some of the GCC’s international agricultural and land investments.