Linda Beyer

DPhil in Sustainable Urban Development


Urban Food Deserts: Exploring Dimensions of Resilience and Food Insecurity of Vulnerable Urban Populations in Nairobi, Kenya

Research abstract

My DPhil research aims to critically explore dimensions of resilience in relation food insecurity and hunger for vulnerable urban populations living in slum settlements of Nairobi, Kenya. 

Using a mixed methods design, qualitative analysis utilizes multivariate regression to explore the associations between socio-economic and soli-ecological dimensions of resilience and food insecurity. Further qualitative analysis of in-depth interviews and focus groups from households in slums settlements explores the impact of food price spikes as well as other shocks and stressors - identifying how these affect a households access to food. Further, geospatial analysis helps to identify disparities in food insecurity and hunger within and between slum settlements.


Dr. Johanna Waters, Dr. Cheryl Doss


As part of Canadian Women Leading in Global Health, I am passionate about addressing disparities in social determinants for health, nutrition and population interventions - focused on emergency-affected and vulnerable urban populations.

For the past 15 years, work across Sub-Saharan Africa with UNICEF and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) has involved leading urban and emergency responses as well as technical areas of nutrition, HIV/AIDS and maternal and child health. I am currently facilitating policy-oriented courses for the MSc in Global Health.


Beyer, L. Chaudhuri, J. and B Kagima. (2016). Kenya's focus on urban vulnerability and resilience in the midst of urban transitions in Nairobi. Development Southern Africa 33 (1). Online at:

Beyer, L., Wambani, V. and K. Kyalo. (2013, September). Time to Think Urban…Kenya. Emergency Nutrition Network. Issue 46: Special focus on Urban Food Security & Nutrition. Online:

Papers and lectures

Montgomery, M. R. and L. Beyer. (2014, January). Localizing Post-2015 Goals, Targets, and Indicators:  Reflections and Technical Analysis. Global Task Force of Local and Regional Governments for Post 2015 Development Agenda towards HABITAT III (with related briefing document for SDG open working group 7).

UNICEF Kenya (2013). Chapter IX. Urbanization. In Situation Analysis of Children and Adolescents in Kenya. Online:

Republic of Kenya, Concern Worldwide, APHRC and UNICEF (2013). Urban Nutrition Strategy (2012 to 2017). Nairobi, Kenya.

Cummings, H., Beyer, L., MacDonald, C. & Bhanjee, T. (2004). An Assessment of the Distribution of Benefits among Program Participants with Different Levels of Assets MICAH (Micronutrient and Health Initiative) Ethiopia and Malawi.  Washington, World Bank. Presented February 2004.

Research interests

#urbanresilience #urbanfooddeserts #slumhealth #refugee