EGU General Assembly 2020
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Forecast based action: developing triggers for preventing food insecurity in Eastern Africa

Marc van den Homberg1, Gabriela Guimarães Nobre2, and Edward Bolton1
Marc van den Homberg et al.
  • 110, an initiative of The Netherlands Red Cross (
  • 2Institute for Environmental Studies, VU Amsterdam

The project “Forecast based Financing for Food Security” (F4S) was initiated in July 2019 with the aim to provide a deeper understanding of how forecast information could be routinely used as a basis for financing early action for preventing food insecurity in pilot areas in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Uganda. The F4S project is linked to the existing Innovative Approaches in Response Preparedness Project and is in response to the growing interest and attention placed in recent years by academic institutions, development and humanitarian agencies on creating evidence that can leverage risk prevention and disaster risk reduction.

To ensure adequate forecast-based actions one needs to have the right information and evidence to guide fast decision-making. Key enabling aspects are an understanding of the impact of food insecurity, the resources needed to address it and an insight in the associated costs, beneficiaries’ preferences and lead times. In response to that, the F4S is currently:

  • Developing an impact-based probabilistic food insecurity forecasting model using Machine Learning algorithms and datasets of food insecurity drivers;
  • Collecting local evidence on food insecurity triggers and information on individual preferences on key design elements of cash transfer mechanisms through surveys and choice experiments;
  • Evaluating the cost-effectiveness of different cash transfer mechanisms.

This PICO presentation seeks to share lessons learnt and preliminary results on the development of triggers for enabling early action against the first signs of food insecurity in Eastern Africa. It presents key results obtained through surveys and choice experiments regarding local knowledge in association with food insecurity and aid design. Furthermore, it presents the potential cost-effectiveness and advantages of acting based on forecasts.

How to cite: van den Homberg, M., Guimarães Nobre, G., and Bolton, E.: Forecast based action: developing triggers for preventing food insecurity in Eastern Africa, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-19891,, 2020

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