Global food futures and desertification

G. P. Hekstra, D. M. Liverman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Assessments of the future of food supply and demand at global and regional scales must consider both the environmental and social constraints on agricultural production. Desertification is one of these constraints, and may actually be accelerated in the drive for agriculturally-based economic development or food self-sufficiency. In this paper we first consider two key studies of food futures-a 1981 study by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and a 1982 study by FAO-UNFPA-IIASA - and review their assessments of environmental and social constraints, climatic change and desertification. We suggest that the studies are somewhat optimistic in assessing both the social and environmental constraints on food systems, and note that the concern about desertification plays a small role in these studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-66
Number of pages8
JournalClimatic Change
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Aug 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Atmospheric Science


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