Evidence Summary on COVID-19 and Food Security

Evidence Summary on COVID-19 and Food Security

This  evidence summary published by UNEG (United Nations Evaluation Group) looks at the findings, good practices and lessons learned from past evaluations of interventions to protect food security in times of crises, in order to contribute to a more effective response by the UN system.

Drawing from 65 evaluation reports, the study built on the three pillars of the UN framework for the immediate socio-economic response to COVID-19 that have potential effects on food security: social protection and basic services; economic response and recovery; and social cohesion and community resilience.

Conclusions include the following: 

  • Interventions that support social protection were more effective when designed as a bundle of complementary modalities tailored to the local context and specific needs of target beneficiaries, and involving adequate partnerships.
  • Programmes supporting economic response and recovery of food insecure populations in times of crises were more effective when designed and implemented taking into account the realities of the context (e.g. economic, financial, infrastructural, political, environmental, social), and when they included clear scaling-up strategies with involvement of partners, private sector and political actors.
  • Interventions addressing food insecurity can better support social cohesion by broadening their scope to include not only core target beneficiaries but also the most vulnerable.

The study was coordinated by the evaluation offices of FAO, IFAD, UNIDO and WFP.