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Settlement, Market and Food Security

image of Settlement, Market and Food Security

Settlement dynamics have been reshaping West Africa’s social and economic geography. These spatial transformations – high urbanisation and economic concentration – favour the development of market-oriented agriculture.

With the population of West Africa set to double by 2050, agricultural production systems will undergo far-reaching transformations. To support these transformations, policies need to be spatially targeted, improve availability of market information and broaden the field of food security to policy domains beyond agriculture. They need to rely on homogeneous and reliable data – not available at present – particularly for key variables such as non-agricultural and agricultural population, marketed production and regional trade.

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Editorial

Sahel and West Africa Club

Looking at the world from a different viewpoint is always helpful. Not because that viewpoint might reveal a hitherto unknown reality or hidden truths, but because it can provide both points of contention and inspiration from which policies should be drawn. The Members of the Sahel and West Africa Club have given their Secretariat the task of facilitating this type of thinking on the basis of factual and independent analysis. In 2010, they requested that a regional study be conducted which would be both retrospective and prospective and which would focus on two determinants of food security: settlement and the regional market.

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