Document Type


Publication Date

Winter 2-10-2023


This toolkit is intended to help community leaders and technical support professionals assess and build food system resilience in their regions. The toolkit is available in English and Spanish and in written and video format. In the introduction, we explore the concept of resilience and the Community Capitals framework and suggest possible indicators of food system resilience. In Chapter 2, we outline four tools for assessing community advantages and challenges and developing plans to address them. These tools are: asset mapping, focus groups, nominal groups, and strategic planning. While many research techniques can be deployed for resilience building, we have found these four to be especially useful in building purpose-driven, directed initiatives that are responsive to community needs and assets. Chapter 3 explores the role of policy in building (or obstructing) resilience, and in responding to shocks. We take a birds-eye view of disaster experiences in both Vermont and Puerto Rico and review how political actors responded differently in each region. We use the Multiple Streams Approach as a lens for understanding how policy decisions happen and where there are opportunities to advocate for change. In the final chapter, we offer lessons from our own resilience research efforts in Puerto Rico and Vermont. We connect our findings with food system resilience indicators and community capitals to offer real-world examples of strengths and vulnerabilities in the face of crisis.


For the video version of the toolkit, please visit the links below: