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  • 1. Chiwona Karltun, Linley
    et al.
    Hamed, Sarah
    Mackay, Heather
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.
    Andersson, Åsa
    Migration and the Food Environment2017In: Ending Childhood Obesity: Actions through Health and Food Equity, Uppsala, Sweden, 2017, , p. 6p. 20-25Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 2.
    Mackay, Heather
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography.
    A feminist geographic analysis of perceptions of food and health in Ugandan cities2019In: Gender, Place and Culture: A Journal of Feminist Geography, ISSN 0966-369X, E-ISSN 1360-0524Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article contributes to a feminist geographic analysis of how urban food and health environments and non-communicable disease experience may be being constructed, and contested, by healthcare professionals (local elites) in two secondary Ugandan cities (Mbale and Mbarara). I use thematic and group interaction analysis of focus group data to explore material and discursive representations. Findings make explicit how healthcare professionals had a tendency to prescribe highly classed and gendered assumptions of bodies and behaviours in places and in daily practices. The work supports the discomfort some have felt concerning claims of an African nutrition transition, and is relevant to debates regarding double burden malnutrition. I argue that a feministic analysis, and an intersectional appreciation of people in places, is advantageous to food and health-related research and policy-making. Results uncover and deconstruct a dominant patriarchal tendency towards blaming women for obesity. Yet findings also exemplify the co-constructed and malleable nature of knowledge and understandings, and this offers encouragement.

  • 3.
    Mackay, Heather
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography.
    Farming or not farming? : Factors influencing the agricultural involvement of households in and around secondary Ugandan CitiesManuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Why and where might urban residents in Africa farm? How might urban African populations be linked with rural land and peoples? This paper is situated within such debate, investigating two secondary cities of Uganda: Mbale and Mbarara. The research question asks what factors might be influencing whether, and where, urban households in these cities practice agriculture. Using multinomial logistic regression I explore which urban households had greater odds of farming, and where such farming might occur (the urban area, a rural area, or both). Results suggest that larger households, and those whose heads were not working (waged) but also not looking for such work, those with older household heads or heads who had lived longer in the cities, as well as those that had rural family connections (received food transfers), were more likely to be involved in agriculture, either in an urban or in a rural area. Findings are in contrast with some studies which have suggested that it is the urban poor, or recent rural-urban migrants who farm the city or retain farming livelihood strategies. Instead, this study suggests that, in these two secondary Ugandan cities, the more urban-rooted and the relatively better-resourced urban households have higher odds of being involved in agricultural activity. Findings contribute to better understanding of the factors influencing the agricultural practice of urban-based households, and to understanding of urban-rural linkages. Although this study focuses on Uganda, the findings may be relevant for other secondary African cities that experience similar socio-political, economic and food-related circumstances.

  • 4.
    Mackay, Heather
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography.
    Food, farming and health in Ugandan secondary cities2019Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This research contributes to countering a large city research bias by focusing on the food, farming and health experiences of two secondary cities of Uganda: Mbale and Mbarara. It is not an apocalyptic story. Like anywhere in the world, for some residents things were going well; for others, less well. My research explores the varied geometries of advantage and disadvantage in diets, food security, and livelihood circumstances to shed light on why things were more secure for some than for others. I used multiple methods including a household survey, focus groups with local healthcare professionals, and in-depth interviews with varied city residents. A geographic perspective explored intersections of food, farming and health with aspects of identity (such as gender, class, tribe), and with place (the city itself, but also with rural areas, or other urban areas).

    The starting point was the theorised food system, nutritional and epidemiologic transitions predicted to occur with urban development, often called nutrition transition theory. My research suggests caution with dominant models of how urban life shifts food and farming systems towards a food system and diet pattern focused around large retailer supermarkets, processed foods, fast foods, more meat, less agriculture, less movement. Nutrition transition theory postulates these changes causing a shift in epidemiology from infectious to non-infectious diseases in urban areas. Instead of the suggestion from nutrition transition theory, my work presents evidence of non-communicable disease (obesity, diabetes, hypertension) experience in Mbale and Mbarara’s residents, but without evidence of advanced change in food and farming systems. Findings revealed relatively low dietary diversities and common food insecurity. Diets remained predominantly traditional, as did the main food sources (traditional markets and neighbourhood shops), across diverse residents. The more food secure had regular salaried employment and strong relational links with rural farms and family, supporting work on multi-spatial livelihoods. This contrasts with earlier ideas of who farms the African city, or retains farming livelihoods. Most vulnerable to food insecurity and low diet diversity were those who were most dependent on purchasing all their food. In conclusion, this research suggests that food system, nutritional and epidemiologic transitions in Mbale and Mbarara may be less linked than previously thought, or linked in more complex ways. Other drivers of epidemiologic change are likely. Findings highlight the importance of local data and specific city investigations.

     

  • 5.
    Mackay, Heather
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography.
    Food Sources and Access Strategies in Ugandan Secondary Cities: An Intersectional Analysis2019Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This article arises from an interest in African urbanization and in the food, farming and nutritional transitions that some scholars present as integral to urban life. The paper investigates personal urban food environments, food sources and access strategies in two secondary Ugandan cities, Mbale and Mbarara, drawing on in-depth interviews and applying an intersectional lens. Food sources were similar across dimensions of difference but food access strategies varied. My findings indicate that socioeconomic circumstance (class) was the most salient influence shaping differences in daily food access strategies. Socioeconomic status, in turn, interacted with other identity aspects, an individual’s asset base and broader structural inequalities in influencing urban food environments. Rural land and rural connections, or multispatiality, were also important for food-secure urban lives. The work illuminates geometries of advantage and disadvantage within secondary cities, and highlights similarities and differences between food environments in these cities and Uganda’s capital, Kampala.

  • 6.
    Mackay, Heather
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography.
    Mapping and characterising the urban agricultural landscape of two intermediate-sized Ghanaian cities2018In: Land use policy, ISSN 0264-8377, E-ISSN 1873-5754, Vol. 70, p. 182-197Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Extending beyond previous research biases towards large cities or analyses based largely on one type of urban agriculture (UA) (such as market gardening, or home gardening), this research aimed to investigate all forms of UA within two intermediate-sized Ghanaian cities (Techiman and Tamale). Where was being farmed? For whom, and why? The paper considers how findings compare to Ghana’s larger cities, and possible implications for theory and for planning. Methods included remote sensing, field mapping, interviews and a 1000-household per city questionnaire. The most common reason for farming was food supplementation. This was often via staple foods, particularly maize, rather than the leafy vegetables common in larger cities’ market gardening. Farming was predominantly via home gardening, particularly for the better off. The larger city of Tamale also sustained organised irrigated-vegetable market gardens.

    Findings suggest a picture not dissimilar to Ghana’s larger cities but with greater prevalence of home gardening, and a dominance of staple foods rather than perishable or high value crops. A compelling finding, which has received less attention in the literature, is the extent of, and roles played by, what this study refers to as ‘institutional land. Both Ghanaian Ministry of Food and Agriculture’s policy framing, and market crisis theorising, of the drivers and role of UA were not found to be an accurate reflection of Techiman and Tamale’s UA. Rather than being a localised survival activity of the poor or marginalised, of recent migrants, or of predominantly women, these cities contained a large scale and diverse spatiality of UA mainly for non-poor and non-migrants’ supplementation of their staple food larder. Results emphasise the context-specific nature of a city’s urban agriculture, and underline the need for researchers and UA advocates to be specific about the form of UA under the microscope when making claims for ‘an urban agriculture’.

  • 7.
    Mackay, Heather
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography.
    Keskitalo, E. Carina H.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography.
    Pettersson, Maria
    Getting invasive species on the political agenda: agenda setting and policy formulation in the case of ash dieback in the UK2017In: Biological Invasions, ISSN 1387-3547, E-ISSN 1573-1464, Vol. 19, no 7, p. 1953-1970Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study reviews how the issue of ash dieback has been placed on the political agenda in the UK, a country where the disease has affected one of the largest national extents, thus representing a particularly severe case. Comparisons are made between how the scientific community framed the ash dieback threat and the resulting response strategy and how both the media and the British government framed the problem. Representing one example of media framing, the study analyses one British newspaper’s coverage of the disease and the response strategies (the Daily Telegraph). The analysis highlights a gap between the biologically rooted perspective and the perspective of policymakers, where policy must manoeuvre between disparate viewpoints and needs. Crucially, none of Pautasso et al.’s (Biol Conserv 158:37–49, 2013) five plant-science-based solutions were explicitly adopted by the British Government in their response strategy to ash dieback disease. The same is true of the biological control recommendations offered by Kirisits et al. (J Agric Ext Rural Dev 4(9):230–235, 2012). Instead, the government adopted a broader, more comprehensive approach than that recommended by plant scientists. The present analysis thus provides an example of a holistic perspective on the multiple competing factors that policymakers must navigate in their attempts to delineate action. It highlights instances in which proposed biological responses were rendered less applicable by a failure to understand the agenda-setting process and the policy-making arena. The present findings suggest that an improved understanding of the factors influencing agenda setting and policy action is essential to arriving at a more effective and integrated understanding of responses to biological threats.

  • 8.
    Mackay, Heather
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.
    Lindström, Ida-Maja
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.
    Stjernström, Olof
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.
    Chapter 16: Sweden: evaluation of, and feedback from, Sweden's SKC recognition system2015In: The diversity value: how to reinvent the European approach to immigration / [ed] Laura Zanfrini, Maidenhead, UK: McGraw-Hill, 2015, 1, p. 277-288Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 9.
    Mackay, Heather
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History.
    Mugagga, Frank
    Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Climatic Sciences, School of Forestry, Environmental and Geographical Sciences, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.
    Kakooza, Lydia
    College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (Caes), Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.
    Chiwona-Karltun, Linley
    Department of Urban & Rural Development, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden.
    Doing things their way?: Food, farming and health in two Ugandan cities2018In: Cities and Health, ISSN 2374-8834, Vol. 1, no 2Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper presents new data on urban households’ agriculture, food environments and non-communicable disease (obesity, diabetes, hypertension) in two intermediate-sized Ugandan cities (Mbale and Mbarara). Nutrition transition theory suggests that fast-foods, eating out and supermarket shopping, together with sedentary urban lifestyles and less agricultural activity, are drivers of growing non-communicable disease burden. We explore these claims using statistics from a 2015 socio-economic and anthropometric survey of 1995 households. Results indicate that these cities are already experiencing non-communicable diseases, despite a lack of advanced food system and nutritional transitions. Surveyed households generally had low or medium dietary diversity, and a diet pattern and an agricultural practice primarily geared towards staple foods. Food transfers (mainly staples) from rural relatives were common, particularly for agricultural households. These farming households also had better income status than non-farming households. Experience of food insecurity was relatively common. Nevertheless, high prevalence and strongly gendered patterns of obesity were identified. In contrast to some theorising of the farming practice of urban-based households, there was little evidence that such agriculture was fuelled by poverty, vulnerability or migrant status. Findings also imply that there are other drivers of epidemiologic change in these cities than those suggested by nutrition transition theory.

  • 10. Pritchard, Bill
    et al.
    Mackay, Heather
    Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography.
    Turner, Christopher
    Special issue introduction: Geographical perspectives on food and nutrition insecurity in the global South2017In: Geographical Research, ISSN 1745-5863, E-ISSN 1745-5871, Vol. 55, no 2, p. 127-130Article in journal (Refereed)
1 - 10 of 10
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