Webinar: The Politics of Information and Analysis in Famine and Extreme Emergencies

The ability to predict and analyze famine has improved sharply in the past 15 years. However, the political influences on data collection and analysis in famine and extreme emergencies continue to limit evidence-based prevention and response. In many crises, good quality data are not readily available, which makes it easy to undermine analysis processes and distort findings. Sometimes governments or armed groups exert influence for political ends. Additionally, aid agencies, donors, and even local leaders sometimes also try to influence findings.
Famine analysis will never be free of political influences. Therefore, on this webinar, we will share some good practice for better managing political influences. We will also present several ways influences on data collection and on analysis processes play out. The webinar is based on findings from the Constraints and Complexities of Information and Analysis project.

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  • Daniel Maxwell, Henry J. Leir Professor in Food Security and Research Director at the Feinstein International Center, Tufts University
  • Jeeyon Kim, Senior Researcher, Mercy Corps and Visiting Fellow, Feinstein International Center
  • Lindsay Spainhour Baker, Research Associate, Centre for Humanitarian Change
  • Peter Hailey, Director and Founder of the Center for Humanitarian Change and Visiting Fellow, Feinstein International Center


  • Margie Buchanan-Smith, Senior Research Associate, ODI and Visiting Fellow, Feinstein International Center
  • Kamau Wanjohi, Senior Technical Advisor, UN Food and Agriculture Organization and Country Coordinator for Integrated Phase Classification analysis, Yemen
  • The webinar will be chaired by Gregory Gottlieb, Professor and Director of the Feinstein International Center, Tufts University.

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Researchers from the Feinstein International Center and the Centre for Humanitarian Change jointly conducted the study that we will present on this webinar. The study includes a synthesis report, which is based on six country case studies (five of which were considered at risk of famine in recent years) all available here. Three briefing papers are forthcoming.