After 30 years of dynamic growth and substantial poverty reduction in Asia, do agriculture and rural development still have a role to play in that region? The policy briefs in this collection provide abundant evidence that they do. Although the incidence of people living in poverty fell from more than 50 percent in the mid-1970s to 18 percent in 2004, and the incidence of hunger fell to 16 percent, Asia is still home to more than half of the world’s poor, most of whom live in rural areas. Agriculture and rural development are thus still key to reducing poverty and hunger in the region.
Contents: Agricultural and Rural Development for Reducing Poverty and Hunger in Asia: Past Performance and Priorities for the Future Nurul Islam and Joachim von Braun; Poverty in Asia and the Transition to High-Priced Food Staples C. Peter Timmer; Asia's Poorest and Hungry: Trends and Characteristics Akhter U Ahmed, Ruth V. Hill, Doris M. Wiesmann, and Lisa C. Smith; Economic Exclusion and Poverty in Asia: The Example of Castes in India Sukhadeo Thorat; Women's Status and the Changing Nature of Rural Livelihoods in Asia Agnes R. Quisumbing; Agriculture in Asia: Challenges and Opportunities Mark W. Rosegrant, Claudia Ringler, Timothy B. Sulser, Siwa Msangi, Tingju Zhu, Rowena Valmonte-Santos, and Stanley Wood; Asian Food Market Transformation: Policy Challenges to Promote Competitiveness with Inclusiveness Ashok Gulati and Thomas Reardon; Changing Sources of Household Income and Poverty Reduction in Rural Asia, 1985-2004 Keijiro Otsuka and Jonna P. Estudillo; How and When Road Investments Encourage Inclusive Growth: Learning from the Asian Development Bank's Experience. Hemamala Hettige; Strategies for Developing and Disseminating Improved Rice Technologies for the Poor. Robert Zeigler; Climate Change in the Context of Asia: Pro-Poor Adaptation, Risk Management, and Mitigation Strategies. Gary Yohe, Ian Burton, Saleemul Huq, and Mark W. Rosegrant; Risks Faced by Rural Households and Private-Sector Insurance Initiatives in India. D. Sattaiah; Developing Rural Institutions That Strengthen the Voice of the Rural Poor. Eduardo T. Gonzalez; Decentralization and Public Service Delivery to the Rural Poor. Kamiljon T. Akramov; Investment Priorities for Economic Growth and Poverty Reduction in Asia. Shenggen Fan, Joanna Brzeska, and Ghada Shields