Big Goals - Small Island: Will Fiji achieve sustainable food security? : Comparing the plans and policies built by the Fijian government under the Millennium Development Goals and Sustainable Development Goals

University essay from Uppsala universitet/Statsvetenskapliga institutionen

Abstract: This thesis examines how global development goals affect Fijian plans and policy strategies to achieve food security. The concept of food security is vast and complex, as several development issues contribute to the difficulty in achieving such security. It is therefore relevant to look at some of the dominating and underlying causes that challenge the possibility for Fiji to achieve food security. Built on previous theoretical and empirical evidence, this thesis identifies poverty and vulnerability as two dominant causes that hinder food security on Fiji. However, other causes, both internal and external, are recognised. Global development goals such as the Millennium Development Goals and the Sustainable Development Goals have highly influenced the strategies built within Fijian plans and policies. Millennium Development Goal 1 and 7, and Sustainable Development Goal 1 and 2, are of particular interest to this study, as the different goals target the issues of poverty, vulnerability and hunger. Although the different goals all target the underlying causes of food insecurity, this thesis finds that they differ in influencing a focus on achieving sustainable food security. Therefore, as the aspects of poverty, vulnerability and food security are highly intertwined, this thesis examines how strategies tackling poverty and vulnerability reduction have influenced strategies on food security on Fiji. By comparing the plans and policies built in consistency with the Millennium Development Goals and the Sustainable Development Goals, it has been possible to analyse whether such global goals have had an influence on addressing the underlying causes of food security on Fiji. Using the method of structured focused comparison in combination with an in-depth text analysis, structured questions have been built in order to analyse the chosen materials. The analysis has been conducted using information from different national plans found to be of relevance to the purpose of this study. The results show that goals with greater focus on social and environmental vulnerability, as well as long-term targets to eradicate poverty, provide a greater success in influencing a focus on food security in Fijian plans and policies. However, additional factors such as political instability, climate change and globalization need to be integrated into further studies on the chosen subject, in order to provide a greater understanding of how to achieve food security in a Pacific Small Island Developing State such as Fiji.

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