Twenty Five Years of Food Security Measurement: Extramural Research Grants

The U.S. Government began measuring household food security in 1995, making 2019 the 25th year of data collection.

To mark this milestone, USDA, Economic Research Service (ERS) funded a suite of competitive grants through a collaborative research program titled “25 Years of Food Security Measurement: Answered Questions and Further Research.” The purpose of the program is to foster research related to the past 25 years of U.S. household food security research and to explore feasible evidence-based improvements looking forward.

Selection and coordination of research projects is managed through a collaboration between Tufts University and the University of Missouri.

Research papers resulting from funded projects were presented at a national conference on April 4, 2022 and will be compiled in a journal supplement.

The conference was recorded and a video overview is available here, with links to the full video series (including all presentations and discussions).

Research areas

The program funded six research projects—aimed at generating ideas, innovative approaches, and critical feedback—to improve food security measurement methods. The projects and principal investigators are:

  • “Structural Violence and Food Security: Building a Framework to Expand Research and Measurement,” Chelsea Singleton, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Tulane University
  • “Personal Food Security,” David Ribar, Georgia State University
  • “Measuring Food Insecurity in Latino Families: Expanding Understanding of their Experiences Through Exploratory Interviewing and Cognitive Testing,” Amanda McClain, San Diego State University
  • “Validation of an Abbreviated Child and Adult Food Security Scale (ACAFSS),” Ana Poblacion, Boston University School of Medicine
  • “Developing a Disaster Food Security Scale,” Lauren Clay, D’Youville College
  • “Validity Evidence for the Use of the USDA Adult Food Security Survey Module with American Indian and Alaska Native Adults,” Cassandra Nikolaus, Washington State University