Families and food in hard times

Families and food in hard times

Food poverty in the global North is emerging as an urgent social and moral concern, increasingly recognized as a central issue in the field of health inequalities in industrialized countries. With widening income disparity in Austerity Europe and ‘the end of cheap food', these effects are being exacerbated. International media report an increase in the number of children arriving at school hungry, a dramatic rise in the number of food banks handing out food parcels to families and parents forced to choose between ‘heating and eating'. However, little is known about how food practices are negotiated in low-income families, children's and young people's perspectives of food poverty and how it affects their lives, or how food poverty manifests and is addressed in different places. The proposed interdisciplinary, ambitious and innovative study will answer such questions, breaking new ground by: a) applying a mixed method international comparative case study design to the study of household food poverty b) including the experiences of children and young people using both extensive and intensive data and c) drawing on methodological developments in the sociology of food and consumption to elucidate habitual behaviour. Providing for ‘a contrast of contexts' in relation to conditions of austerity, the study focuses on Portugal, where poor families with children have been most affected by economic retrenchment, the UK, which is experiencing substantial cuts in benefits to poor families, and Norway which, in comparison with most societies, is highly egalitarian and has not been subject to austerity measures. Building on the Principal Investigator's (PI's) current mixed-methods UK research on families, food and paid work, the project will develop the PI's research skills, publication record and international reputation. Engaging academic and non-academic beneficiaries at various stages of analysis and dissemination the study will achieve societal as well as scientific impact.

 

Estatuto: 
Entidade participante
Financiado: 
Sim
Entidades: 
European Research Council
Rede: 
University College London

Food poverty in the global North is emerging as an urgent social and moral concern, increasingly recognized as a central issue in the field of health inequalities in industrialized countries. With widening income disparity in Austerity Europe and ‘the end of cheap food', these effects are being exacerbated. International media report an increase in the number of children arriving at school hungry, a dramatic rise in the number of food banks handing out food parcels to families and parents forced to choose between ‘heating and eating'. However, little is known about how food practices are negotiated in low-income families, children's and young people's perspectives of food poverty and how it affects their lives, or how food poverty manifests and is addressed in different places. The proposed interdisciplinary, ambitious and innovative study will answer such questions, breaking new ground by: a) applying a mixed method international comparative case study design to the study of household food poverty b) including the experiences of children and young people using both extensive and intensive data and c) drawing on methodological developments in the sociology of food and consumption to elucidate habitual behaviour. Providing for ‘a contrast of contexts' in relation to conditions of austerity, the study focuses on Portugal, where poor families with children have been most affected by economic retrenchment, the UK, which is experiencing substantial cuts in benefits to poor families, and Norway which, in comparison with most societies, is highly egalitarian and has not been subject to austerity measures. Building on the Principal Investigator's (PI's) current mixed-methods UK research on families, food and paid work, the project will develop the PI's research skills, publication record and international reputation. Engaging academic and non-academic beneficiaries at various stages of analysis and dissemination the study will achieve societal as well as scientific impact.

 

Objectivos: 
Elucidate and compare policy contexts, discourses and practices in relation to food insecurity by examining international and national published data and policy documents. Examine and compare the extent of food poverty in Portugal, the UK and Norway by conducting secondary analysis of international quantitative data. Explore and compare the experiences, perspectives and understandings of children and parents in employed and non-employed low-income families in rural and urban areas in Portugal and the UK and Norway, by applying a range of in-depth qualitative methods. Develop the methodology in this area through the use of a multi-method comparative research design.<br />Contribute to knowledge in public health nutrition, fields of childhood and family life, food studies, food ethics and poverty. Inform the intervention and advocacy work of NGOs, policymakers and practitioners by engaging with them in relation to the study's findings at various stages of the research.
Parceria: 
Rede Internacional
Fábio Augusto

ERC-FFP

Coordenador Geral 
Rebecca O'connell
Coordenador 
Data Inicio: 
01/05/2014
Data Fim: 
30/04/2019
Duração: 
60 meses
Em curso