By Siwa Msangi
Smallholder farmers in Africa, Asia, and elsewhere are highly exposed to crises or “shocks” in both their physical and their socioeconomic environments. Like all households, smallholder farm households seek ways to reduce their exposure to these shocks and to find ways of smoothing their income streams and, hence, consumption levels to avoid volatile “feast and famine” cycles. Broadly applied, insurance has traditionally facilitated individuals and households in insulating themselves against the kinds of shocks that arise as part of everyday life. This policy note discusses the gendered dimensions of risk and insurance and their links to nutrition outcomes.