Monitoring and projecting global hunger: Are we on track?

Matthew Cooper, Benjamin Müller, Carlo Cafiero, Juan Carlos Laso Bayas, Jesus Crespo Cuaresma, Homi Kharas

Publication: Scientific journalJournal articlepeer-review


This paper presents the first global picture of food security at a subnational level based on the Food Insecurity Experience Scale, the indicator for the Sustainable Development Goal of “Zero Hunger” that is most indicative of the individual’s lived experience of food insecurity and hunger. Using microdata from 75 countries and filling gaps using machine learning, we find significant heterogeneity in levels of food insecurity around the world. Examining global temporal trends and accounting for the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, we find that rates of severe food insecurity are declining, resulting in global decreases in the total number of severely food insecure people. However, the total number of moderately food insecure people has been increasing and, after recovering from the shock of the COVID-19 pandemic, we predict it will continue to increase through the end of the 2020s. Overall, we conclude that current trends in development and demographic change will still leave a large share of the world’s population still experiencing hunger by 2030.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)100568
JournalGlobal Food Security
Publication statusPublished - 2021

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