'The book's radical message "save livelihoods not just lives" should be on the desk of every policy-maker concerned with relief and development and demands a rethink of policy and practice across the board.' - Robert Chambers, Institute of Development Studies 'A book on development I really enjoyed. An entriguing story emerges: the real expert on saving lives and livelihoods are the people facing famine and insecurity themselves. This book details the evolution of the local food monitoring system, showing that by concentrating on what people can do in response to change, rather than what they cannot do, we can devise more permanent and effective responses to food insecurity than emergency food aid distribution.' - Mike Aaronson, Save the Children Poor people living in high-risk environments live continuously with uncertainty which often threatens their livelihoods. They have therefore developed effective means of predicting and responding to large fluctuations in rainfall, harvest levels and natural resource production. These methods of prediction and response often out-perform conventional early warning systems promoted by donors and governments, and yet are rarely considered in the conception and implementation of food security programmes.