Food security, food sovereignty and collective action during the war in Ukraine – Ukrainian and global perspectives

Foto: Serhii Poliak, Shutterstock
Foto: Shutterstock, Serhii Poliak

The project studies how different agri-food models in Ukraine – large industrial and small household farms – respond to the challenges of war and what role solidarity initiatives and collective action play in this.

It also examines the impact of the war in Ukraine on the global food systems by studying disruptions in food supply chains and emerging cross-border networks of solidarity.

It will contribute to the theoretical and policy debates about who will feed the world and discuss the overlapping meanings and opportunities for synergy between food security and food sovereignty.

The research includes fieldwork or field visits to Ukraine (depending on the situation in Ukraine) and interviews with key actors in Ukrainian agriculture (food producers, grain traders, civil society, policy makers) and expert interviews conducted in Ukraine and Europe. A series of online workshops with scholars, practitioners and activists will be an important source of information about the changes in the local and global food systems and serve as a platform for co-learning and co-production of knowledge.

Academic publications:

Mamonova, N., Wengle, S. and V. Dankevych (2023) Queen of the fields in wartime: what can Ukrainian corn tell us about the resilience of the global food system? Journal of Peasant Studies, 50(7): 2513-2538

Mamonova, N. (2023). Food sovereignty and solidarity initiatives in rural Ukraine during the war. The Journal of Peasant Studies, 50(1), 47-66.

Scientific reports:

Mamonova, N., Borodina, O. and B. Kuns (2023) Ukrainian agriculture in wartime. Resilience, reforms, and markets. Longread. The Transnational Institute

Mamonova, N., Borodina, O. and B. Kuns (2023) Українське сільське господарство у воєнний час. Cтійкість, реформи та ринки. Longread. The Transnational Institute

In the media:

17 January 2024             Två år med krig i Ukraina – hur påverkas jordbruket och livsmedelsförsörjningen? Talk by Natalia Mamonova at Kungliga Skogs- och Lantbruksakademien (the Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry), Stockholm. (IN ENGLISH & SWEDISH)

20 November 2023        9 Key points on Ukrainian Agriculture in Wartime – Resilience, Reforms, & Markets. by Natalia Mamonova for ARC2020 – Agricultural and Rural Convention. (IN ENGLISH)

8 August 2023                   Food security, food sovereignty and collective action during the war in Ukraine . Podcast with Natalia Mamonova in the Political Ecology Forum at the Norwegian University of Life Science (IN ENGLISH)

8 June 2023                       Russerne kan ha ødelagt for seg selv: – Krim er spesielt avhengig av dette .  Interview with Natalia Mamonova in Nettavisen. (IN NORWEGIAN)

7 June 2023                       Experter: Förödande konsekvenser för jordbruket i regionen . Interview with Brian Kuns in Dagens Nyheter (IN SWEDISH)

24 April 2023                     Hvordan havnet ukrainsk korn i Europa istedenfor i Afrika og Midtøsten? Opinion piece by Natalia Mamonova in Nationen. (IN NORWEGIAN)

15 March 2023                 Krigens helter . Opinion piece by Natalia Mamonova in Nationen. IN NORWEGIAN

6 March 2023                    Småbrukerne i Ukraina kan sitte med nøkkelen til fremtidens matforsyning. Opinion piece by Natalia Mamonova in Aftenposten. (IN NORWEGIAN)

10 February 2023            Russia is draining a massive Ukrainian reservoir, endangering a nuclear plant . Interview with Brian Kuns for National Public Radio, USA. (IN ENGLISH)

24 November 2022         What does war in Ukraine mean for smallholder farming? by Natalia Mamonova for ARC2020 – Agricultural and Rural Convention. (IN ENGLISH)

25 December 2022          Bönderna är krigets sanna hjältar i Ukraina  . Interview with Natalia Mamonova for ATL – Lantbrukets Affärstidning. (IN SWEDISH)

6 August 2022                   Hemligheten bakom Ukrainas bördiga jord . Interview with Brian Kuns in SvD Näringsliv (IN SWEDISH)



Project details

Contact persons

External project coordinator

Project period

01/03/2023 - 31/12/2025

Collaboration partners

Brian Kuns, The Department of Urban and Rural Development, the Swedish University of Agrarian Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden (prosjekteier)

Olena Borodina, The Department of Agricultural Economics and Policy Reforms, Institute of Economics and Forecasting at the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine.


Swedish Research Council for Sustainable development – Formas


Portrait of Natalia Mamonova

Natalia Mamonova – senior researcher at RURALIS – has given an interview to the Ukrainian journal “Commons” about her project on “Food security, food sovereignty and collective action during the war in Ukraine. Ukrainian and global perspectives”.

The text of the interview is available at this link:

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  • Article


A-17/23 Queen of the fields in wartime: what can Ukrainian corn tell us about the resilience of the global food system?

Contributors: Susanne Wengle Vitalii Dankevych

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