How can countries strengthen their capacity to conduct food policy research? The Food Policy Research Capacity Indicators (FPRCI) assess food policy research capacity by first quantifying capacity, and second, by qualifying that capacity. The maps above show countries with data available.

The first indicator is a head count of professionals employed at local organizations whose work involves food policy research or analysis. Research capacity is measured by fulltime equivalent analysts/ researchers with PhD equivalent. This is then divided by the country’s rural population (per million) to obtain an indicator of food policy research capacity.

The quality of a country’s food policy research capacity is estimated by the number of relevant publications in international, peer-reviewed journals over a five year period as tallied from searches in two journal databases: EconLit and Web of Science. This internationally accepted standard of quality allows comparison across countries. Related to the number of FTEs with a PhD, it gives an idea of productivity per reseracher.

The combination of the quantitative and qualitative indicators reflects the efficiency of the research process in each country. Other factors that influence a country’s enabling environment for food policy research capacity include governance, resource allocation, ICT availability, and human resources management.

A good understanding of these factors will facilitate an understanding of the minimal food policy research capacity threshold for a country and what the returns to scale are.

For the entire dataset, go to http://hdl.handle.net/1902.1/20526.

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