Fri, February 22, 2019
The IAP 'Food and Nutrition Security and Agriculture' project unfolded through a series of four regional rpeorts and a global syntheiss that was published in November 2018.
In February 2019, two major outreach events to disseminate the findings of the report were held in Wsshington DC.
Members of the project from IAP, NASAC, AASSA, IANAS and EASAC presented the regional and global findings at scientific sessions organised by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI, “Transforming food systems to deliver healthy, sustainable diets: the view from the world’s science academies”, February 14) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS, “Food and nutrition security: scientific partnerships and opportunities”, February 15).
Presenters covered the main themes in the five reports, reviewing the evidence underlying the potential for integrated regional and global actions for diverse and sustainable food systems, and explaining how ongoing engagement between academies, the science community more broadly, and at the science-policy interface, is a critical part of achieving impact. Transformation of agriculture and food systems to deliver sustainable, healthy diets requires action to address both supply-side and demand-side issues: necessitating renewed investment in human capacity and research infrastructure, focusing on food and nutrition security for vulnerable groups and high-risk territories at a time of environmental change, particularly climate change, and capitalising on opportunities, including those for developing novel foods and underutilised crops.
The slide presentations and IFPRI seminar video recording, including worldwide online discussion, you can find here. The AAAS meeting covered similar issues for a more general scientific, policy-maker and media audience. Discussion at the AAAS session emphasised the connectivities between local and global priorities with the wider perspective concentrating on global public goods, reducing shared risks, and tackling the imperative to fill knowledge gaps by coordinated research efforts. The overall theme of the AAAS Annual Conference was “Science Transcending Boundaries”: the IAP project provides some good illustrations of this. For example, in the project focal points relating to the central role of basic research to underpin discovery and innovation worldwide, for building new inter-regional and inter-disciplinary partnerships and sharing good practice, and for understanding that choices made in one region may affect others.