Armed conflict and food security in West Africa: Socioeconomic perspective
This paper in the International Journal of Social Economics examines the effect on increasing armed conflict on food security in Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) member countries. Traditional theory perceives climate change, social injustices, property right, food insecurity, religious extremism and bad governance as the predictors of armed conflicts. In this study, the authors departed from the traditional theory by demonstrating that the nature and trend of armed conflict could also pose a serious threat to food security. The study utilized the dynamic generalized method of moments (GMM) to investigate the effect of conflict intensity on food security in the 14 member states of the ECOWAS using annualized panel data from 2005 to 2015. The findings reveal that armed conflict is a significant predictor of food security in West Africa. The findings of the study bring to fore, the urgent need to rethink global initiative for combating food insecurity. The effort must also identify the causes of armed conflicts and design sound strategies for de-escalating the armed conflicts. Resolving the escalating armed conflict entails developing a conflict resolution framework that is extremely sensitive to the causes of conflict in Africa and adopting localized ex ante institutional diagnostics that would help in understanding the nature of the conflicts.