Food Security and Smallholder Farming in Ethiopia


2013 to 2015


The project seeks to sustainably graduate at least 50,000 food insecure households in four regions in Ethiopia. The aim is is to enhance the capacity of smallholders to withstand social and environmental shocks and improve their productivity.


Despite double-digit growth over the past decade, an average of six million Ethiopians face acute food shortages annually. While the Ethiopian Government's Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) serves to protect the most vulnerable households from asset depletion in times of social or environmental distress, relatively few of these households 'graduate' from the program with the capacity to withstand recurring threats of sliding back into conditions of absolute precarity. In collaboration with CARE-Ethiopia, this project seeks to conduct research to promote an appropriate package of programs to sustainably graduate at least 50,000 households.


Planning and strategy meetings were held in Ethiopia with all the key stakeholders, and preliminary research was conducted in the CARE program sites.


This project is ongoing but has already made an impact in terms of how the constraints facing smallholder farmers are conceptualized, and appropriate programs are in development to overcome the constraints. Without a social science perspective, designing a program on sustainability that resonates with the needs and understandings of the four communities and 50,000 households directly impacted by the CARE-GRAD program would have been difficult.

Submitted by: 

  • Makki, Fouad

Researchers involved: 

  • Makki, Fouad M

Organizations involved: 

  • CARE

International focus: 

  • Ethiopia