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India - Food Security Atlas of Rural Bihar, 2009

This report is an effort to provide a district level profile of food security in Bihar. As the country moves towards greater devolution and decentralisation, data at disaggregated levels remains a stumbling block. District level data is notoriously inadequate and this report urges that greater attention be paid to data collection and dissemination at sub-state levels. The next chapter – Chapter 2 – provides an overview of the state and places it in the context of other states in the country. In line with the current – and correct – approach that emphasises outcomes rather than inputs, Chapter 3 derives a composite index of food security outcomes and provides a brief methodological note. It draws a distinction between the Food Security Outcome Index (FSOI) that is based on outcome measures on the one hand, and the Food Security Index (FSI) that is a composite index of the factors that are critical to food security on the other hand. Chapters 4 to 6 analyse the food security situation along the dimensions of availability, access and absorption. Chapter 7 deals with the analysis of food security Index in Bihar. It includes the indentification of priority districts. Chapter 8 discusses strategies for action that emerge from our analysis, in the context of the broader state and national strategic interventions already in place. It also provides the policy initiatives that may be considered for the most food insecure districts in Bihar to improve their food insecurity. Chapter 9 wraps up the report with the final conclusions.