Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

WEBINAR: India-EU Experience Sharing on Adaptation Planning and Implementation

About Adaptation Futures 2020

TERI will co-host Adaptation Futures 2020 with the World Adaptation Science Programme (WASP) in Delhi from September 27 - October 1, 2020. As a premier event in the global adaptation spectrum, Adaptation Futures is a unique platform to facilitate a dialogue towards action oriented solutions from a diverse range of stakeholders that includes academics, practitioners, scientists and policy makers across the world.

There is a significant need for international cooperation in meeting the global goal of adaptation with an aim of enhancing adaptive strengthening resilience and reducing vulnerability under the Paris Climate Agreement. In this context, Adaptation Futures 2020 will be an ideal opportunity for India to give visibility to the adaptation requirements of developing countries, and generate a significant dialogue around actionable solutions.

Building Momentum for Adaptation
As Adaptation Futures 2020 will be the first Adaptation Futures conference to be held in Asia, this will be the ideal opportunity to flag adaptation challenges in the Asian context, marked by diverse political, social, economic and cultural characteristics, and accelerating climate-related vulnerabilities. 

This conference is ideally placed for India to build on the momentum on adaptation generated by the Global Commission of Adaptation launched in October 2018 and contribute effectively to the Global Adaptation Action Summit in October 2020.

To know more about the conference, visit the website.

WEBINAR: How will private investment address global challenges like climate change and biodiversity loss in a post-COVID world?

30 June 2020. How will private investment address global challenges like climate change and biodiversity loss in a post-COVID world? 

Experts from BMO Capital Markets, BNP Paribas Asset Management, CFA Institute, Climate Policy Initiative, ICEA LION Group and International Finance Corporation (IFC) discussed these questions and more on how private finance can support a sustainable recovery from the COVID-19 economic fallout.

Speakers

Marcin Bill, Senior Financial Officer, International Finance Corporation (IFC)
Mary Leung, Head, Standards and Advocacy, Asia Pacific, CFA Institute
Mark Lewis, Global Head of Sustainability Research, BNP Paribas Asset Management
Dorothy Maseke, Group Head of Risk and Compliance, ICEA LION Group
Manju Seal, Head of Sustainable Finance, Advisory, BMO Capital Markets
Moderated by: Vikram Widge, Senior Advisor, Climate Policy Initiative

WEBINAR + DOCUMENTARY: Protecting Forests for Sustainable Livelihoods in Uganda

Jun 30, 2020. Our Forests Under Threat: Protecting Forests for Sustainable Livelihoods in Uganda

FAO North America and the National Geographic Society invite you to join a virtual film screening and roundtable focusing on how the global community can protect forests in order to sustain livelihoods. The session will explore challenges and solutions in balancing conservation goals with local needs and global demands for forest resources. A screening of a short film titled, How Sustainable Plantations Help Save Uganda’s Decimated Forests, produced by James Thomson, will precede the discussion.
  • Vimlendra Sharan, Director, FAO North America
  • James Thomson, Director, MELT FILMS
  • Kathy Abusow, President & CEO, Sustainable Forestry Initiative
  • Mette Wilkie, Director, Forestry Policy & Resources Division, FAO
  • Huma Khan, Global Communications Lead for Forests, WWF International
  • Alex Kyabawampi, Senior Corporate Social Responsibility Programme Manager, The New Forests Company, Uganda
  • Vanessa Serrao, Executive Producer, National Geographic Society (Moderator)

WEBINAR: How are food businesses coping with COVID-19 and its aftermath?

30 June 2020. Organised by IFPRI. Concern is growing that the global outbreak of COVID-19, already a health crisis, could turn into a food crisis. In poor countries, the need for food assistance could increase dramatically, and in some rich nations too, the pandemic has put many at risk of hunger.

Food supply chains have largely continued to function, but private operators have faced some serious disruptions—including closure of bars, restaurants, hotels, and schools as well as shifts in consumer demand. Some sub-sectors, especially fruits and vegetables and meat packing and processing, have suffered supply chain disruptions because of COVID-19 infections, logistics problems, and/or unavailability of seasonal workers. Such disruptions have caused both significant food loss and waste and reduced availability of the affected foods to consumers. 


Without food, there can be no health. With this stark warning, this seminar looked at: 
  • How should governments balance the need to protect lives from COVID-19 and the need to protect livelihoods? 
  • What food sector innovations and changes (automatization, e-commerce) are being introduced to ensure food supply chains can function without disruption as we fight COVID-19? 
  • How can “green lanes” be created for seasonal and migrant labor to work safely in food production? 
  • How are private food businesses adjusting to shifts in food demand and food safety requirements, on the one hand, and risks of supply chain disruptions, on the other?
Speakers
Related:
"The Quiet Revolution in Food Systems in Africa & Asia," a lecture by Thomas Reardon, Michigan State University, MSU Distinguished Faculty, for the Nigeria Association of Agricultural Economists, October 17, 2018

WEBINAR: Novel entrepreneurial approaches in the Tanzanian food and agricultural sector

30 June 2020. Entrepreneurship, Economic Development and the Scientific Method. An ongoing project to apply the approach to the Tanzanian food and agricultural sector will be described.

This webinar [Recording forthcoming] addressed the important need for entrepreneurship to fuel economic development in developing economies. Entrepreneurship often is portrayed in a somewhat romanticized fashion, where trial and error efforts predominately result in failure and only very occasionally see success. 

However, particularly in developing economies, unstructured trial and error can be a costly impediment to effective change. Therefore, the webinar also introduced a novel research initiative to develop entrepreneurial approaches and practices which can improve the performance and efficiency of entrepreneurial processes. 

Learnings from initial applications of this scientific method will be summarized. Further, an ongoing project to apply the approach to the Tanzanian food and agricultural sector will be described.
  • Rajshree Agarwal Rudolph P. Lamone Chair and Professor in Entrepreneurship and Director of the Ed Snider Center for Enterprise and Markets, University of Maryland, USA.
  • Arnaldo Camuffo Full Professor of Business Organization, Vice director of the Invernizzi Center for Research in Innovation, Organization, Strategy & Entrepreneurship, Bocconi University, Italy.
  • Alfonso GambardellaProfessor of Management and Head of the Department of Management and Technology, Bocconi University, Italy.
  • Anna TemuChair and Founder, Sokoine University Graduate Enterprises Cooperative Society (SUGECO) and Senior Lecturer in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness, Sokoine University of Agriculture, Tanzania.
  • Moderator: 
  • Audra WormaldPhD Candidate in Strategic Management & Entrepreneurship, University of Maryland, USA.

WEBINAR: COVID-19 and African Food Security

18 June 2020. Africa’s drive for food security is threatened by the COVID-19 pandemic, which could set back fragile gains in agricultural efficiency, market integration and climate-resilient innovation. Africa’s struggle to feed itself will also have an impact on global supplies.

The Aspen Global Innovators Group organised a live conversation with:
  • Esther Ngumbi, a Kenyan food security expert and Assistant Professor of Entomology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 
  • Cedric Habiyaremye, a Rwandan crop scientist and Research Associate at Washington State University. 
They discussed how COVID-19 is playing out in Africa's agricultural sector, and what can be done to minimize the long-term damage from the pandemic. The conversation was moderated by Dan Glickman, former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.

WEBINAR: The Next Generation of Africa Europe Relations, with Commissioner Jutta Urpilainen

30 June 2020. As part of its ‘Debating Africa-EU’ series, Friends of Europe is organising a debate on how to reset Africa-Europe relations with European Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen and Aya Chebbi, African Union Special Envoy on Youth.

As Africa and Europe seek to re-set their partnership, Friends of Europe is engaging with its partners across both continents about the long-term vision, as well as the diverging and converging issues at the heart of this established cooperation. Africa and Europe have a shared interest in accelerating work on the global agenda for sustainable development and facing together a climate emergency. The Covid-19 crisis is exposing the lack of resilience on the fundamentals of life (water, food, health, energy) and the urgency to rethink our common future as Africa and Europe.

Through its “Debating Africa-EU” series, Friends of Europe is focused on engaging its partners and the new EU College of Commissioners around their vision and priorities for EU-Africa cooperation. The series has been timed to take place in the run-up to the EU-Africa Union Summit 2020. 

Speakers: a strategic focus on how to “reset Africa-Europe relations”
  • Jutta Urpilainen, European Commissioner for International Partnerships,  
  • Aya Chebbi, African Union Youth Envoy (cancelled due to poor connection) replaced by Dr. Amani Abou-Zeid - AUC Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy 
  • Mo Ibrahim, The Mo Ibrahim Foundation is an African foundation, established in 2006 with one focus: the critical importance of governance and leadership for Africa.

WEBINAR: How Covid-19 calls for an alliance for financing

29 June 2020How Covid-19 calls for an alliance for financing. In its Communication on the global response the pandemic, the EU announced that the mobilisation of €15.6 billion from existing external actions will allow its action to be “fast, adapted and operational”.

Blended finance and guarantee funds (and in particular the EFSD) should play a significant role in the Team Europe response, as they will allow to leverage new financial resources. The EIB will contribute €5.2 billion to the EU response to COVID-19 outside the EU.

The DFI Alliance (US, Canada and European DFIs) announced their joint efforts to mobilise financial resources and bring technical expertise to private sector enterprises in emerging and frontier markets.

This webinar, which was the third of a series organised by DAI and ECDPM, brought together Development specialists, DFIs and FinTechs, to explore and compare various instruments and mechanisms implemented by EU Member states and international donors.

The webinars was recorded and will be made available on DAI’s and ECDPM’s websites.
  • Intro and facilitation: San Bilal, Head of Programme Trade, Investment and Finance, ECDPM –  Team Europe’s response, the EU blending and guarantee mechanisms and the critical role DFIs can play. Importance to mobilise at scale and de-risk financing.
  • Catherine Collin, Head of Regional Representation, East Africa, European Investment Bank (EIB) – How the EIB response to Covid-19 is operationalised with local partners.
  • Soren Andreasen, General Manager, European Development Finance Institutions (EDFI) - DFI Alliance, and collaboration among DFIs on COVID-response.
  • Tillman Bruett, Global practice lead, Financial Services and Investment, DAI – How the USAID funded INVEST programme is adapting and supporting investment work including the health sector.

POLICY BRIEF and WEBINAR: Extension and Advisory Services: at the frontline of COVID-19 response for food security in Africa

30 June 2020. Recognising that the impact of COVID-19 and response measures are not uniform across the globe, FAO’s Research and Extension Unit, and Regional Office in Africa in collaboration with the Regional Network of Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (AFAAS) is organising a series of webinars to discuss the role EAS in the context of the pandemic in different regions.

Extension and Advisory Service (EAS) systems, through their network of actors (public, NGOs, private sector, Producer Organizations, farmer groups, etc.), can play an indispensable role in raising awareness of COVID-19 to reduce spread of the pandemic and assist in emergency operations, while ensuring that rural producers have relevant and accurate information, inputs and services to support their agricultural production, strengthen local value chains, both during and in the post-emergency period.

The objectives of this webinar were:
  • Brief on the key challenges posed by COVID-19 in agricultural sector, markets and supply chains that affect EAS assess and delivery;
  • Explore and discuss the potential roles of EAS actors and regional networks and policy aspects in providing essential services to the rural population in a short and medium term including socio-economic recovery;
  • Share experiences of key measures that EAS actors are undertaking by adapting their capacity, activities, and operational mechanism to respond effectively to COVID-19;
  • Highlight specific country examples from Cote d’ lvoire, Kenya, Malawi, Uganda and Liberia and responses to overcome challenges of COVID-19 impact and related measures;
  • Discuss the way forward in transforming EAS to provide effective support to food security and sustainable agriculture.
Speakers:
  • Mr Ade Freeman, Regional Programme Leader, FAO Regional Office for Africa - Impact of COVID-19 on food and agriculture sector in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Dr. Puyun Yang, Agricultural Training and Extension Officer, FAO Research and Extension Unit (AGDR) - Extension and advisory services (EAS): at frontline of COVID-19 response to ensure food security.
  • Dr. Rasoanindrainy Andrianjafy, African Forum for Agricultural Advisory Service (AFAAS) Secretariat. (based in Madagascar)- AFAAS’s experiences on supporting its national constituencies to provide EAS at frontline of COVID-19 response in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Ms Rose Kamau, Principal Agriculture Officer, Crop Protection Division, State Department of Crop Development and Agriculture Research, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Cooperative, Kenya - E- Plant Clinics - A digital approach to agricultural extension. 
  • Dr. Nathalie Bogui Konan, National Rural Development Support Agency (ANADER), Cote d’ lvoire - Agricultural advisory services response to impact of COVID-19 on food security in Cote d’ lvoire. 
  • Dr. Richard Miiro, Lecturer, Makerere University, Department of Agriculture Extension and Innovation Studies, Academia Representative-Uganda Forum for Agricultural Advisory Service - Responding to the COVID-19 lock down: experiences of agricultural extension and advisory services (AEAS) actors in Uganda. A survey by UFAAS.
  • Ms. Nevena Alexandrova, FFS Expert, FAO Country Office in Malawi - Innovating for continued farmer field school’s engagement amidst COVID-19 uncertainties in Malawi.
  • Mr. Edward Perry, Ministry of Agriculture, Liberia. - Experiences on the role of EAS in response to the COVID-19 and outbreaks of Ebola in Liberia.
Policy brief: 

  • The global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is expanding daily. Governments around the globe are confronted with multiple challenges related to minimizing the devastating health impact and protecting human lives, and ensuring sufficient food supplies and the functioning of services to those most in need. All this while coping with the economic consequences of COVID-19, which is expected to push an additional 548 million people below the poverty line. 
  • Between present disruptions and future threats to the food supply chain, the COVID-19 outbreak has generated extreme vulnerability in the agriculture sector. It is therefore crucial to mobilize all available instruments, institutions and stakeholders from both public and private sectors and civil society to ensure appropriate and timely response.
  • Agricultural Extension and Advisory Service (EAS) systems play an indispensable role at the frontline of the response to the pandemic in rural areas. However, in order to adapt to the emergency context within the government regulations, EAS providers need to rapidly change their way of operating.
Field guide:
  • This field guide for extension and advisory services contains key information, and COVID-19 related activities. 
  • In French: http://www.fao.org/3/ca9472fr/ca9472fr.pdf
Previous Webinar
19th May 2020. EXTENSION AND ADVISORY SERVICES: at the frontline of COVID-19 response ensuring food security in Asia

WEBINAR: Landscape Roundtable: Insights from The African Landscape Action Plan

June 2020.  Landscape Roundtable: Insights from The African Landscape Action Plan. The Landscape Roundtable is part of an on-going series of discussions focusing on climate change, agriculture and landscapes. EcoAgriculture Partners and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Liaison Office for North America have jointly organized the series since 2009.

Recording forthcoming

The soon to be released Phase 3 of the African Landscape Action Plan (ALAP), lays out a strategy for achieving sustainable development in Africa through integrated landscape management (ILM).

African leaders of the November 2019 African Landscape Dialogue in Arusha, Tanzania, provided insights on recent progress and the recommendations for action developed during the Dialogue, around landscape partnerships and governance, achieving biodiversity conservation and climate-smart agriculture through ILM, business and finance, land use planning, and policy.
  • The November Dialogue, convened in Arusha, Tanzania, was the third in a series of Africa-
    wide dialogues among local leaders of integrated landscape partnerships and others working with them to share innovations and lessons from the field, convened by the Landscapes for People, Food and Nature initiative. 
  • The first, held in Nairobi, Kenya in 2014, generated the initial African Landscapes Action Plan, which was endorsed by the African Union. 
  • The second Dialogue, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in 2017, produced an updated ALAP Phase 2.
  • Recommendations of the African Landscapes Action Plan, Phase 3 (biographies of the speakers can be found here)
    • African Landscapes Dialogue and Overview of the ALAP process: Louise Buck (EcoAgriculture Partners / Cornell University)
    • Climate-smart agriculture through ILM: John Recha (CCAFS/SANREM Africa)
    • Biodiversity conservation through ILM: John Ajjugo (Horn of Africa Regional Environment Centre and Network, HoA-REC and N)
    • Business and market development for ILM: Nancy Rapando (Solidaridad East Africa)
    • Landscape finance: Mao Amis (African Centre for a Green Economy, AfriCGE)
    • Inclusion of women and youth in integrated landscape management: Njeri Kimotho (Solidaridad East Africa)
    • Land-use planning for landscape development: Stephen Nindi (National Land Use Planning Commission, NLUPC,Tanzania)
    • FAO collaboration in advancing the ALAP in Tanzania: Mponda Malozo (FAO in Tanzania)
    • National policy to support ILM in Africa: Luc Gnacadja (former Minister of Environment, Housing, Urban and Regional Development of Benin; former Executive Secretary of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification)
    Related:
    The People’s Agroecology Process emerged in 2015 as a grassroots-led initiative to scale out agroecology in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. It was inspired by the work of allied organizations involved in the transnational peasant and small-scale farmer movement, La Via Campesina—the world’s largest rural social movement with over 200 million members in more than 80 countries. In our collective, we believe that agroecology has the power to mobilize and inspire millions to take back the land, seeds and food appropriated and controlled by transnational corporations.

    This publication summarizes the overarching framework, practices and experiences of the protagonists of the People’s Agroecology Process. It is not a step-by-step manual, nor does it intend to be a comprehensive response to the many questions facing our movements.

    Monday, June 29, 2020

    WEBINAR: launch 2020 Hunger Report of the Bread for the World

    29 June 2020. Bread for the World Institute’s 2020 Hunger Report, Better Nutrition, Better Tomorrow, examines the challenge of ending global hunger and all forms of malnutrition and offers recommendations to accelerate progress.

    A virtual launch was organised (recording forthcoming): a panel discussion with Dr. David Nabarro, special envoy for COVID-19 of the World Health Organization, and Rev. Dr. Heber Brown III, founder of the Black Church Food Security Network. 

    Recording of the webinar forthcoming

    The following is a snapshot of the material covered in this report and how it is organized by chapter.
    The 2020 Hunger Report is supported by co-publishers Margaret Wallhagen and Bill Strawbridge. View the executive summary for a complete list of report sponsors.

    1. Strengthening Food Systems for Nutrition from Farm to Fork

    Read chapter 1
    Summary: The potential to nourish everyone is real and within our grasp, but not without more of an effort to improve dietary quality everywhere. The links in a food supply chain present many opportunities to advance a nutrition agenda. It starts with farmers and ends with consumers, increasing the supply of nutritious food while cultivating demand.

    2. Improving Nutrition to Improve Health

    Read chapter 2
    Summary: Poor nutrition is now the leading risk factor of premature death and disability worldwide. Tackling this problem requires a multisectoral approach to assisting vulnerable populations. Women and children receive the highest priority, beginning with the 1,000 days between pregnancy and a child’s second birthday, the launch pad for improving health throughout the life course.

    3. Championing Nutrition in Sustainable Climate-resilient Food Systems

    Read chapter 3
    Summary: Climate change poses a serious threat to the goal of ending hunger and malnutrition—more serious than any previous obstacle. Sustainable food systems are a critical part of any effective response to climate change, meaning systems that meet the needs of current generations without closing off the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

    4. Advancing Equity for Workers in Food Systems

    Read chapter 4
    Summary: Employers throughout the food system have a very poor record when it comes to respecting workers’ rights. Around the world, most of the people who produce, pack, process, and serve food are not paid enough to meet their basic needs for nutritious foods. Improved nutrition outcomes everywhere require addressing power imbalances in food systems.

    Featured Article: Collective Action on Nutrition: More Important Than Ever In Light of COVID-19

    Read the article
    Summary: 2020 was set to be a pivotal year for the international community to accelerate progress on ending childhood malnutrition, culminating in the Nutrition for Growth Summit in December, hosted by the government of Japan. While recognizing that it may need to be slightly delayed due to the pandemic, stakeholders should take collective action on maternal and child nutrition to ensure that nutrition is recognized, more than ever, as critical in protecting human health.

    REPORT RECOMMENDATIONS
    Build nutrition-smart food value chains (Chapter 1)
    • Align agricultural priorities toward dietary quality and diversity and away from a small number of staple crops and animal source products.
    • Invest in small-scale, local-level producers and processors of nutritious foods, ensuring gender and racial equity; and incentivize large-scale producers and processors to expand dietary diversity and improve nutrient quality.
    • Build infrastructure to pave the way for disconnected rural farmers to reach urban markets to deliver nutritious foods at reasonable prices.
    • Reduce nutrient loss and waste by improving food chain management.
    • Mobilize private sector leadership to improve food environments for nutritionally vulnerable populations.
    • Make dietary diversity more affordable and accessible to consumers who are low-income by improving social protection systems and ensuring gender and racial equity.

    Align food, health, and education systems to deliver on nutrition (Chapter 2)
    • Target populations that are more vulnerable to the long-term consequences of malnutrition: children, adolescents, and women of child-bearing age.
    • Invest resources in preventing malnutrition to avoid the higher costs of treating its consequences.
    • Integrate nutrition-related indicators into policies and programs across multiple sectors.
    • Issue food-based nutrition guidelines that are coherent across agricultural, school feeding, safety net, and health policies, and promote racial and gender equity.
    • Improve public health by incorporating nutrition into education and training of all public health workers, screening patients for food insecurity, and incorporating fruit and vegetable prescriptions into treatment for diet-related health conditions.
    • Prohibit the marketing of unhealthy foods to children, and provide consumers with clear labelling about the healthfulness of food products.
    Adopt food security and agriculture policies that improve nutrition and protect the planet (Chapter 3)
    • Promote healthy, diversified diets that improve nutrition and reduce the environmental footprint of the food system.
    • Redirect agricultural production subsidies and incentives to environmental stewardship to reduce the agricultural sector’s contributions to greenhouse gas emissions and to help farmers adapt to and build resilience to changing climate conditions.
    • Regenerate the natural resource base crucial for food production by reversing biodiversity loss, improving soil and water management, and establishing a moratorium on deforestation.
    • Increase public and private sector research on the impact of climate change on nutrition and food systems. Ensure this research applies an equity lens, especially for race and gender.
    • Integrate food systems and nutrition into national and international governance frameworks on climate change.
    Ensure that healthy and sustainable food systems leave no one behind and work for everyone (Chapter 4)
    • Ensure all food-system workers fair pay and decent work conditions.
    • Build food systems free of gender and racial inequities by enforcing equal protections under the law or by modifying laws to ensure equal protection.
    • Empower Indigenous populations so that they can maintain control over their lands and protect traditional food systems.
    • Protect workers regardless of their immigration status from forced labor and other abuses in food supply chains.
    • Address root causes of child labor in agriculture by ending rural hunger and poverty and guaranteeing every child free access to education.

    Thursday, June 25, 2020

    WEBINAR: real-world applications of space data to address food security

    24 June 2020. The Space Enabled Research Group (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) and Secure World Foundation are hosting a webinar series focusing on space data for the SDGs.

    A first webinar on SDG2: Zero Hunger featured panelists from the World Food Programme (WFP), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Group on Earth Observations (GEO), FluroSat, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

    Video recording forthcoming

    The United Nations has set ending hunger, achieving food security and improved nutrition, and promoting sustainable agriculture as part of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A rapidly growing global population, socio-economic development, limited production resources and changing climate, play a significant role in increasing the vulnerability of sustainable food systems around the world. Data derived from space technologies such as navigation, communication and remote sensing capabilities play a unique role in addressing food security challenges, and guiding policy makers on today's policies for future food security.

    Objectives
    • Examples of real-world applications of space data to address food security around the world
    • Demonstrate the role of space technology as an effective observation-based policy tool for monitoring food security, and increasing agricultural productivity and production
    • Highlight potential technical barriers that limit the operational use of Earth Observation by decision makers
    • Share pathways of collaboration and coordination between agencies and organizations working on food security.
    Panelists
    • Dr Inbal Becker-Reshef is the Director of NASA Harvest (NASA’s Applied Science Program on Food Security and Agriculture housed at University of Maryland) and Program Scientist at the GEOGLAM Secretariat. Her work is focused on the application of satellite information for agricultural monitoring from the field to global scales, in support of decisions in food security and agricultural markets. 
    • Dr. Arif Husain is Chief Economist and Director of Research, Assessments and Monitoring Division at United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) in Rome, Italy. 
    • Dr. Anastasia Volkova is a TEDx Speaker, an MIT 35 Under 35 Innovator in APAC and an Amelia Earhart Fellow. In late 2016 she founded FluroSat, and since then has taken the company through a transformational journey of commercialising agricultural science, raising from leading investors (Microsoft M12, AirTree, Space Angels) and growing its decision support platform to support users in more than 14 countries globally. 
    • (Moderator) Dr. Minoo Rathnasabapathy is a Research Engineer within the Space Enabled research group at the MIT Media Lab. In this role, she helps coordinate projects in collaboration with international development organizations, national governments and entrepreneurial companies to apply space technology in support of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. 

    Global Virtual Relay Event - A new era for food and climate

    25 June 2020. Global Virtual Relay Event - A new era for food and climate.

    The current crises we are experiencing has exposed even more the fragility of our food and health systems, and stresses that we are not on track to meet the Sustainable Development Goals set for zero hunger, building the resilience of millions of small scale farmers and reducing agricultural greenhouse gases.

    In an effort to catalyze more effective responses, over the past two years, over 100 organizations have come together as part of the Transforming Food Systems under a Changing Climate initiative to identify pathways for a food systems transformation. 

    The first outcome of this initiative is a final report that lays out 11 actions, that if implemented, can transform global food systems. 

    The report, "Actions to Transform Food Systems Under Climate Change," launching on 25 June, is the collaborative work of a panel of global experts in food security, food systems and climate change. It identifies high-priority actions that we must collectively take now.
    "The number of climate-related natural disasters is climbing at an alarming rate, with significant economic and health impacts, especially for the most vulnerable. Adaptation is needed on a large scale—there will be over 500 million small-scale agricultural producers in 2030—but we are not on target to build their resilience within a decade to greater frequencies and intensities of extreme events"  (page 5)

    Virtual launch of the report


    Given the current situation with COVID-19,a full-day ‘around the world’ virtual relay launch event was organised: A new era for food and climate: Driving transformative actions, from 08:30 – 20:30 CEST. 

    Please see below the list of sessions, further details are available on the website.

    Opening of the relay
    08:30 – 09:00 CEST
    Hosted from
    Canberra, Australia
    Hosted from
    Hanoi, Vietnam
    Hosted from
    New Delhi, India
    Hosted from
    Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
    Hosted from
    Rome, Italy
    Hosted from
    Wageningen, Netherlands
    Hosted from
    Edinburgh, United Kingdom
    Hosted from
    Bamako, Mali
    Hosted from
    Vermont, USA
    Hosted from
    New York, USA
    Hosted from
    Ontario, Canada
    Hosted from
    Cali, Colombia
    Hosted from
    Cali, Colombia

    Wednesday, June 24, 2020

    WEBINAR: Africa post-Covid-19: leapfrogging to sustainable, climate-compatible development

    24 June 2020. Africa post-Covid-19: leapfrogging to sustainable, climate-compatible development

    Climate change and the green agenda are top priorities for both the African and the European continent. This has been clearly spelled out in the EU Comprehensive Strategy with Africa (March 2020) and in the African Union’s Climate Change Strategy (to be published soon). It can be assumed that these topics will be at the center of the upcoming EU-AU Summit scheduled in October 2020.

    Meanwhile, as the Covid-19 crisis erupted and has had important health and socio-economic impacts, this may have important implications on climate change, green transition, sustainable energy and food security agendas.

    This webinar proposed an in-depth exploration of the possible impacts of the Covid-19 crisis on greener and climate-friendly economies in both Europe and Africa:
    • Has Covid-19 made it more difficult or easier to work on a green transition and sustainable energy access?
    • What can be expected from the African Union’s Climate Change Strategy and what will be the key areas of convergence and divergence with the priorities of the EU as set out in the Green Deal? 
    • How will Africa be able to reconcile its ambitions to restore economic growth, create value chains, development and jobs with the transition towards green economies?
    • What role could and should the EU play in supporting this complex transition process?
    Speakers
    • Moderator: Christine Hackenesch, DIE (German Development Institute)
    • Introductory remarks: Geert Laporte, Director of ETTG (European Think Tanks Group)
    • Youba Sokona, Special Advisor for Sustainable Development at South Centre and IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) Vice-Chair
    • Carla Montesi, Director for Planet and Prosperity Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development, European Commission
    • Jean-Paul Adam, Director, Technology, Climate Change and Natural Resource Management Division at United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)

    WEBINAR: Operating Models for Early Generation Seed Production: 10 Case Studies

    24 June 2020. Operating Models for Early Generation Seed Production: 10 Case Studies

    Public research institutions in the Global South have developed and released improved seed varieties that exhibit better yield and tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses than farmer-saved seed. And yet despite the advantages of these improved varieties, they have not been broadly adopted by farmers.

    In 2016, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and United States Agency for International Development jointly funded studies in the African Green Revolution Alliance countries. These studies indicated that the lack of early generation seed (EGS) production is a primary bottleneck that constrains agricultural development and that partnerships between the public and private sector would be needed to resolve it.

    But what do partnerships for EGS production and distribution look like in practice? What are the typical roles and responsibilities of public and private sector actors? And how is EGS production sustainably financed?

    This webinar of the USAID Bureau for Resilience and Food Security and Context Global Development discussed lessons learned from studying ten EGS public-private partnership models and to hear from leading stakeholders in Bangladesh and Nigeria are on the front lines ensuring that commercial seed producers have reliable and sustainable access to clean, true-to-type foundation seed of improved varieties.

    PRESENTERS

    Mark Huisenga
    PRESENTER
    Mark Huisenga
    Senior Program Manager, USAID Bureau for Resilience and Food Security
    Mark Huisenga is an agricultural specialist with over 20 years of professional experience in grain, fertilizer and seed value chains in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas.  At USAID Mr. Huisenga is responsible for... more
    Lauren Good
    PRESENTER
    Lauren Good
    Senior Program Officer, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
    Lauren has been a leader in both private and non-profit arenas, as a business owner, board member, and consultant. As an innovative problem solver with the ability to communicate across diverse audiences, Lauren intuitively... more
    Jason Nickerson
    PRESENTER
    Jason Nickerson
    Senior Program Manager, Context Global Development
    Jason is a Sr. Program Manager with the Context Global Development (Context), an NGO that provides management consulting for industry-leading agriculture & biotechnology companies, governmental & non-governmental agencies,... more
    Amsale
    PRESENTER
    Amsale Megistu
    Senior Program Officer, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
    Amsale has over 20 years of international development experience, and currently leads the prioritization and coordination of the agricultural development investments in Ethiopia and manages in-country relationships with key... more
    Mark Tokula
    PRESENTER
    Mark Tokula
    Assistant Director & Operational Head , Umudike Seeds
    Mark Tokula is an Assistant Director and Coordinator of the Seed Technology program at the National Root Crops Research Institute (NRCRI) located in Umudike, Nigeria. He leads Umudike Seeds, the early generation seed (EGS) company... more
    Khalequzzaman
    PRESENTER
    Mohammad Khalequzzaman
    Chief Scientific Officer & Head, Bangladesh Rice Research Institute
    Dr. Mohammad Khalequzzaman is an accomplished plant breeder, researcher, and seed production expert. He serves as the Head of Genetic Resources and Seed Division of Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BRRI) and leads all breeder... more