Matt at Aid Thoughts:
Of course, while Oxfam may believe this prediction now, they are trying to change behaviour so it doesn’t come true – this means that the claims will be incredibly difficult to (dis)prove. If food prices happen to double in 20 years, Oxfam will say “Look! We told you so.” If they don’t, they will say “Look at the disaster we averted!” Either way, the winning narrative will be constructed ex-post.Evans thinks that the kind of holistic, systems-approach Oxfam is taking is the right way to go, as indeed our textbook says policy analysts need to think:
This isn’t just a campaign about biofuels, or landgrabs, or making agricultural trade fair, or climate change, or competition for land and water, or women’s rights. It’s about all these things, united beneath the overall banner of ‘food justice in a resource constrained world’. I’ve felt for ages that NGOs need to move on from single issue campaigning towards ways of pushing for whole system change – and Oxfam are going for it in a big way.The report is upfront about some of the political economy challenges their proposed changes will face, but not enough is said about how to change the incentives of the "vested interests" (you may also know them as "stakeholder groups," depending on your ideology), says Ranil, who is also skeptical about putting quite so much faith in smallholder-led growth. Ranil also thinks they aren't being all that holistic, focusing too much on agriculture and not enough on growth in the rest of the economy.
Former Brazilian President da Silva puts his faith in the benevolence of governments: "If the political will is there no one will be denied their fundamental human right to be free from hunger."