Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Thursday, June 30, 2022

Use and impact of digital technologies among agricultural intermediaries in Africa


This study was conducted by a team of researchers from Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Mali and Germany. Data was collected through 1,571 in-person interviews with extension workers, output dealers and input dealers in the four African countries.
It is easily the most comprehensive empirical work on the digital transformation of agriculture in Africa that I have thus far come across. The results are very rich. In addition to the three concrete impact areas that the study isolates, I found its findings on digital skills among agricultural intermediaries very very interesting. John Kieti
The study shows that intermediaries make extensive use of ICTs in their work, much more so than the low adoption rates of D4Ag solutions would suggest. Mobile phones clearly dominate the digital technologies, most commonly smartphones, which are often used daily. Three areas of impact were identified:
  1. ICTs facilitate information sharing between intermediaries and other value chain actors which emerged as the main activity and benefit across the three groups.
  2. ICTs facilitate networking among value chain actors. In the case of dealers, these networks are mainly used for two-way business transactions while extension agents take advantage of ICTs to interact and share information with a wide range of actors.
  3. ICTs reduce transaction costs for input and output dealers through better access to information about buyers, sellers and prices, better timing of produce / input purchases, faster payments from customers and reduced travel times.
The study concludes that given the widespread use of ICTs among agricultural intermediaries, D4Ag service providers can capitalize on intermediaries’ existing digital skills, technological capacities and digitally enabled networks to expand their reach, in particular to producers who are still not universally accessible via ICTs, but also to other actors in the African food and agriculture sector.

The study is available at https://research4agrinnovation.org/publication/digitalization_intermediaries/

 

Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development

21-22/06/2022
Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development was held in Cairo.

This year’s edition of the Forum took place in the context of an increasingly volatile international situation. Disruptions in energy and commodities markets have resulted in price spikes that are negatively affecting many African countries that rely on food and fuel imports. 

The rapidly evolving situation comes at a time when Africa is still grappling with the health and socio-economic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, with women and youth being hit the hardest. Concurrently, protracted conflicts and violence continue to destabilize parts of the continent. These challenges have been compounded by the rising threat posed by climate change.

This cascade of multi-faceted risks is putting African national capacities to the test in an unprecedented manner, as well as sub-regional and continental frameworks. Nonetheless, Africa’s pro-active stance is reflected in several recent developments and initiatives which seek to address some of these challenges.

The Report of the Third Edition of the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development is set to be published soon.

Extracts of the programme

Climate Risks and Opportunities — The Water-Food-Energy Ecosystem Nexus in Africa: Strengthening Cooperation for Sustaining Peace 

The current volatile international situation, with the disruptions in energy and commodity markets, is triggering a food crisis with far-reaching implications on the development and stability of Africa. Many African countries reliant on food and fuel imports are particularly adversely impacted as they still grapple with the socio-economic ramifications of the COVID19- pandemic. Concurrently, climate change manifestations, including frequent and intense droughts, floods, rainfall variability and unpredictability, as well as unsustainable management of natural resources, are jeopardizing water and food security, exacerbating tensions and inducing forced displacement across the continent. Furthermore, the 6th IPCC assessment report highlighted that “climate change has already had adverse impacts on human systems, including on water security, food production and health”. 

These effects of climate change are cross-border in nature, and thus calls for effective cross-border adaptive and cooperative approaches, including through water-food-energy ecosystems. This is critical to address these cascading risks, with their serious implications for stability and security in Africa. 

Against this background, this session discussed effective cooperation and adaptation measures, including through water-food-energy ecosystems nexus, in the context of cascading risks and rising climate impacts across the African continent. It considered relevant approaches on the regional and continental levels that advance sustainable development and promote peace through strengthened cooperation while highlighting the role that partners and financial institutions can play to promote inclusive regional integration. 
  • H.E. Kobenan Kouassi Adjoumani, Minister of Agriculture, Republic of Côte d’Ivoire 
  • Josefa Leonel Correia Sacko, Commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development, Blue Economy, and Sustainable Environment, African Union 
  • Kelly Ann Naylor, Vice-Chair, UN-Water Eduardo Mansur, Director, Office of Climate Change, Biodiversity and Environment (OCB), FAO
  • Tarek Kotb, Lead Global Technical Specialist, Water and Rural Infrastructure, IFAD
  • Chioma Ome, Manager Impact and Innovation, Solar Sister Nigeria

Financing Sustainable Peace and Development in the Face of Cascading Risks 

In the context of a volatile international situation, the signs of a global economic downturn are becoming more salient. Disruptions to trade and supply chains, inflationary pressures, and reduced investment flows are having a ripple effect across the global economy at a time when the socio-economic impacts of the COVID19- pandemic are still palpable. African countries reliant on food and fuel imports are particularly impacted, with many already faced with spiraling debts and increased budgetary pressures. 

Progress made in the recovery from the pandemic is hindered, as well as the achievement of the sustainable development goals. From combatting terrorism, to tackling climate change, and strengthening food security, African countries face a range of cascading risks which bring competing demands and priorities within shrinking available financing. At the same time, there is a real risk that the current geopolitical tensions can lead to a diversion of resources away from support to peace and development efforts in Africa. In this regard, the session will examine how domestic and external financing and innovative financing vehicles should be reoriented to advance holistic and inclusive responses to these challenges and cascading risks, including across the humanitarian-development-peace Nexus, while continuing to prioritize advancing sustainable peace and development in Africa. 
  • Børge Brende, President, World Economic Forum Jenny Ohlsson, State Secretary to Minister for International Development Cooperation 
  • Matilda Ernkrans, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Kingdom of Sweden 
  • Mahmoud Mohieldin, Egypt's Climate Champion, UNFCCC, COP27; UN Special Envoy on Financing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund 
  • Elizabeth Spehar, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support, Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs, United Nations 
  • Kevin Urama, Acting Chief Economist and Vice President for Economic Governance and Knowledge Management, African Development Bank 
  • Franck Bousquet, Deputy Director, International Monetary Fund Stephen Hammer, Advisor, Global Climate Policy and Strategy, World Bank, Climate Change Group 
  • Nena Stoiljkovic, Under Secretary General for Global Relations, Humanitarian Diplomacy and Digitalization, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies 
  • Hanaa Helmy, Head of CSR & CEO, EFG Hermes Foundation 
  • Vipul Bhagat, Global Innovative Financing Advisor, UN Women 

Climate and Security in Africa: Focus on the Sahel

The African continent is disproportionately affected by the implications of climate change, which in turn fuels tensions between communities and aggravates the risks of population displacement, as well as adversely impacts health, food and economic risks. The Sahel has been historically one of the most vulnerable regions to climate implications across the continent. In the period between 80-1970, major droughts resulted in extreme famine and increased displacement of the Sahelian populations. Today, cities of the Sahel are becoming more saturated and poorly equipped to host new populations driven out this time by extremism. 

The session shared ideas, experiences and practices to understand the risks posed by climate change in the Sahel region and advance consolidated efforts for peace, stability and sustainable development, while ensuring the engagement of young people, women and civil society organizations in local, national and international efforts. Additionally, it put forward recommendations and possible responses to the humanitarian, security, political and socio-economic emergencies that climate change is accelerating in the Sahel region. 
  • Ahmed Abdel-Latif, Director General, Cairo International Center for Conflict Resolution, Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding) 
  • Francis Behanzin, General, Commissioner Political Affairs, Peace and Security, Economic Community of West African States Commission 
  • Nathalie Pauwels, Head of Unit for Stability and Peace, Global and Transregional Threats, European Commission Service for Foreign Policy Instruments 
  • Safietou SANFO, Expert, Public Policies, Agriculture and Combating Poverty in Burkina Faso, Thinking Africa 
  • Ladji OUATTARA, Head of the Observatory of Geopolitics, and Security in the Sahel, Thinking Africa

Building and financing climate-resilient agriculture and food systems in Africa

30 June 2022. Building and financing climate-resilient agriculture and food systems in Africa.

Organised by E3G, an independent climate change think tank and co-founder of London Climate Action Week, and WRI, co-lead of the Food and Land Use Coalition, about ongoing efforts to build and finance climate-resilient agricultural systems in Africa:
  • Strategies, plans, and activities being implemented to build agricultural resilience in Africa.
  • Building and financing climate-resilient agricultural systems in Africa.
  • How African institutions can set a bar for action at COP27 on food and agriculture, and how they can move beyond COP27.
Speakers:

The panellists highlighted ongoing efforts to build and finance climate-resilient agricultural systems in Africa including:
  • Moderator: Ed Davey, International Engagement Director of the Food and Land Use Coalition
  • Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo, Executive Director FARA
    Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo, sketched a roadmap, presenting the African Climate Smart Agricultural (ACSA) Framework. The ACSA Framework, developed in support of the AU Climate Change Strategy, aims to drive emissions mitigation and guide meaningful climate-resilient agricultural activities in Africa.
  • Susan Chomba, Director of Vital Landscapes, WRI Africa
    Susan Chomba emphasised the urgent need to address both the ongoing humanitarian food crisis in Africa and the longer-term project to build climate-resilient food systems. She highlighted three areas of work including: integrating the food and land restoration agendas, addressing food loss and waste – estimated at $40 billion lost annually, more than Africa receives in food aid each year, and identifying the role of trade within Africa to enable food access.
  • Andrew Mude, Lead – Agri-SME Development and Innovative Finance AFDB
    Andrew Mude  emphasised the need for NDCs and NAPs to include clear food system indicators to enable climate finance for resilient food system action. He pointed to AfDB President Adesina as a champion of integrating food and climate change policy, the Bank’s commitment to ensure 50% of approved deployments are climate-finance compatible, and that 50% of these resources go towards adaptation projects.
  • Ann Vaughan, Senior Advisor for Climate Change, USAID Bureau for the Resilience and Food Security
    Ann Vaughan referenced President Biden’s recent G7 announcement of $2.67 billion in US government funding to address food insecurity, particularly in African countries exposed to food system shocks. She flagged the expansion of the Feed the Future Programme to an additional 7 African countries and the US for the Agricultural Innovation Mission for Climate (AIM4C), calling for the submission of innovation sprints.
  • Monika Froehler, Chief Executive Officer of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens
    Monika Foehler of the Ban Ki-moon Centre closed the event by setting clear expectations for COP27, highlighting the opportunity to build and finance agricultural and food system resilience, in the context of the climate crisis.

Question asked by Francesco RAMPA of ECDPM:
Is there coordination and Policy Coherence between the new $1.5 billion African Emergency Food Production Facility (focused on fertilizer) and the 25bn Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program? Too much or inefficient use of fertilizer can harm food systems resilience. 
  • The African Emergency Food Production Facility. The African Development Bank Group's Board
    of Directors approved in May 2022 a $1.5 billion facility to help African countries avert a looming food crisis. It will provide 20 million African smallholder farmers with certified seeds. It will increase access to agricultural fertilizers and enable them to rapidly produce 38 million tons of food. This is a $12 billion increase in food production in just two years.
  • The Africa Adaptation Acceleration Program (AAAP) is a joint initiative of the African Development Bank and the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA). It aims to mobilize $25 billion, over five years, to accelerate and scale climate adaptation action across the continent. The AAAP was endorsed at the Leaders' Dialogue on the Africa Covid-Climate Emergency in April 2021. This was the largest gathering ever of African Heads of State and Government solely focused on adaptation.
Answer of Andrew Mude, Lead – Agri-SME Development and Innovative Finance AFDB
"Carbon Markets are hugely important for Africa. Some countries such as Gabon have and instrument called Carbon bond which is based on regulations and a set of instruments which are meant to secure the Gabonese forests and its great capacity  to act as a mitigate and be able to price this out in the market. The Great Green Wall could similarly be monetised for the Carbon Market. (...) Investments in data systems are crucial"
Related:

23/06/2022 INTERVIEW: Africa needs up to $1.6 trillion in climate finance until 2030.

Kevin Urama, the acting chief economist and vice president for economic governance and knowledge
management at the African Development Bank (AfDB), attended the third edition of the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development that was held in Cairo (21-22/06/2022).

The forum discussed Egypt’s preparations to host the UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP27) and explored ways to deal with the ongoing global challenges that affect the peace and security in the continent.
“Adapting to climate change is projected to cost the continent at least $50 billion annually by 2050 to adequately implement its national determined contributions (NDCs). Africa will need a cumulative climate finance of up to $1.6 trillion between 2020 and 2030. This translates into an average of $128 billion annually during that period,” 

"The African Economic Outlook 2022 the AfDB released in May 2022 shows that the structure, flow, and scale of the current global climate finance mirror the present global finance architecture, making it difficult for the most vulnerable African countries to effectively tap climate resilience opportunities."

“The structure is complicated and loosely defined, with multiple, and rapidly evolving sources, instruments, channels, and financing mechanisms. Several development finance instruments are therefore increasingly deployed as climate finance in Africa. For instance, debt instruments constituted two-thirds of all climate finance to African countries between 2011 and 2019. Some 33 percent of this was non-concessional. This raises concerns about further debt vulnerability rise in Africa and potential trade-offs with other sustainable development goals (SDGs) financing commitments and mechanisms,”
"There is a compelling need for a clearer definition, better coordination, and harmonisation of climate finance requirements, while the climate finance commitments should be new and additional. Moreover, the current scale of climate finance is misaligned with nationally determined contributions and SDGs financing requirements in Africa,"

“To adequately implement its NDCs, Africa will need a cumulative climate finance of up to $1.6 trillion between 2020 and 2030. This translates into an average of $128 billion annually during that period." 
"Currently, Africa receives about $18.3 billion per year in global climate finance. In addition, climate finance received by Africa from developed countries would be even smaller if multilateral development banks (MDB) resources are deducted. In total, MDBs committed about $66 billion in climate finance in 2020 – of which $50 billion (or 76 percent) are directed towards mitigation."

"This leaves an average climate financing gap of $108 billion per year during this period. With the current trends, Africa’s conditional nationally determined contributions will not be delivered. The implications of not achieving the NDCs in Africa for global sustainability are obvious – the global climate goals will not be achieved,”
 "African countries need to expand and deepen the utilisation of innovative financing instruments, such as green bonds and loans, sustainability or sustainability-linked bonds and loans, debt-for-climate swaps, blended finance, more efficient and better-priced carbon markets, realignment of perverse subsidies and other progressive tax instruments, as well as financial stability mechanisms to protect their economies from future climate shocks."
"Vlimate change is the most pressing existential threat to economic development, social progress, peace, and security in Africa, which is the second most climate vulnerable region of the world, next to South Asia. The continent also shows the least climate readiness and is the least climate-resilient region in the world."
Related PAEPARD blogpost

31/03/2022 Involvement of the Private Sector in Financing Climate Adaptation Actions

How banks assess climate risks and integrate them into credit risk assessments

24 March 2022. Within the context of EIB TA Financial Sector Programme for West and Central Africa, MFW4A and the IPC, Horus and IECD Consortium hosted the seventh webinar of their series on “How banks assess climate risks and integrate them into credit risk assessments”.

Boosting responsible investment in agriculture and food systems in Liberia, Mauritania, Sierra Leone, Senegal and Tunisia.

29 to 30 June 2022
. Boosting responsible investment in agriculture and food systems in Africa – Good practices to #buildbackbetter multi-stakeholder workshop

Recording forthcoming
  • Organised by FAO and the Information Training and Outreach Centre for Africa (ITOCA).
  • The event brought together key stakeholders from government, non-governmental organizations and agribusinesses from Liberia, Mauritania, Sierra Leone, Senegal and Tunisia.
FAO, ITOCA and partners have provided long-standing support to policy makers, parliamentarians, technical government staff, young agri-entrepreneurs, NGOs and CSOs in Africa under the FAO Umbrella Programme “Supporting Responsible Investment in Agriculture and Food Systems”, with support from the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, the Swiss Federal Office for Agriculture, and the French Republic.

The objectives of this event were:
  • Identifying, showcasing, and discussing good practices that boost responsible investment in agriculture and food systems in Africa.
  • Contributing to knowledge exchange among experts and practitioners from different African countries, and encouraging the emergence of a community of practitioners; and
  • Fostering commitment from dedicated stakeholders to contribute to boosting responsible agri-food systems investments and applying the CFS-RAI Principles.

29/06 Improved governance for responsible investment in agriculture and food systems

It is key to support inclusive processes, which help foster shared understandings on the type of investments needed and their desired impacts, and to define joint objectives among government, civil society and the private sector on how to promote and facilitate such investments. These objectives need to be transformed into coherent and predictable policies, which are essential for investors to operate in a stable environment, for communities to defend their rights, and for governments to realize the potential of rural areas. This includes, amongst others, strong investment screening and assessment processes; multi-stakeholder dialogue and concertation for improved policymaking and implementation; as well as predictable, coherent and sound policies, laws and regulations.

At the same time, it is critical that investment promotion policies and incentives regimes are not only enhanced through improved investment targeting, but also through a more diversified targeting of investors. Beyond attracting larger-scale investments, investment promotion regimes have a crucial role to play in building back better by also offering services and incentives to local actors, which can have a transformative impact on food systems, people and communities. 
  • Moderator Andrew Nadeau, Senior Capacity Development Officer, FAO
  • bakai Varpilah, Ministry of Agriculture, Liberia; and Emna Ouertani, Institute of Agronomic Research of Tunisia (INRAT) - The critical role multi-stakeholder platforms and think tanks can play in enhancing policy design and dialogue, elaborating on both government and science led examples 
  • Henrique B. Zayzay, National Investment Commission, Liberia - The importance of improved screening processes for responsible investment in agriculture and food systems
  • Mohamed Abderrahmane Deddi, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Promotion of Productive Sectors, Mauritania - The crucial factor of policy coherence and streamlined processes for responsible investment in agriculture and food systems

30/06 Empowering youth to engage in responsible investment in agriculture and food systems 

More efforts are needed to empower young women and men, who are the future of agriculture and rural areas, to engage in agriculture and food systems.
  • Moderator: Yannick Fiedler, Programme Officer, FAO
  • Monia Ben Romdhane, Agricultural Investment Promotion Agency (APIA), Tunisia - Training and accompanying young promoters – the Agri-accelerator hub in Tunisia and the Agricultural Investment Promotion Agency 
  • Nicholas Jengre, Solidaridad, Sierra Leone; and Jonathan Stewart, Agro-Tech Liberia Strategies and programmes to engage youth in inclusive business models 
  • Fara Ndiaye, Confédération des Réseaux des Jeunes Agripreneurs du Sénégal - The critical role youth can play in pursuing their own agendas through improved organizational capacities and concerted action
  • Gracian Chimwaza ITOCA Engaging future leaders – learning programmes for students and young researchers

Empowering young agri-entrepreneurs through coaching and incubation programmes: good coaching practices and promising businesses 

  • Mahmoud Khemakhem, coach in agricultural business creation at APIA - The RAI Agri-accelerator hub coaching 
  • Ines Messaoudi, Sultana company manager - Pitching of her investment project in fruity olive oil

Monday, June 27, 2022

The war in Ukraine, global food and nutrition security and country owned food systems

23 June 2022. InfoPoint Virtual Conference: The war in Ukraine, global food and nutrition security and country owned food systems - Learnings from the Investment Climate Reform Facility

The Ukraine crisis has exacerbated a cost-of-living crisis and poses major threats to global food and nutrition security and country owned food systems. Marjeta Jager (DDG INTPA) and Gerda Verburg (UN ASG and Scaling Up Nutrition Movement coordinator) addressed the challenges and opportunities of high food prices and make the case for an integrated approach necessary to reverse negative implications on dietary intake and thereby nutritional status.

The first half of 2022 has raised the spectre of yet another global crisis compromising aspirations for a better world by 2030: On top of the continuing pandemic, conflict and instability, including most recently in Ukraine, pose a major threat to global food and nutrition security and country owned food systems. This year's EU-supported Global Report on Food Crises estimates that in 2021, 193 million people experienced 'crisis' levels of acute food insecurity (IPC/CH Phase 3 or above) and needed urgent assistance across 53 countries/territories. This humanitarian crisis also threatens to exacerbate the unfavourable outlook for nutrition. 

Russia and Ukraine provide around 30% of global wheat exports. As a result, prices of wheat have soared since the war began. This undermines people's ability to afford a healthy diet and improve their nutritional status – especially vulnerable populations. The UN Secretary General has warned that the Ukraine crisis could lead to a 'hurricane of hunger and a meltdown of the global food system', while the World Food Programme has expressed grave fears that 2022 could be a year of catastrophic hunger. 

The need for an integrated approach, addressing both food security and nutrition is critical. This includes besides short- and medium support to countries in need, a long-term strategy in fighting hunger and multiple forms of malnutrition. A food systems transformation is necessary to absorb stresses, be more resilient, and ensure nutritious and healthy diets even in the face of crises.
  • Marjeta Jager - Deputy Director-General INTPA
  • Gerda Verburg - UN ASG and Coordinator of the SUN Movement
  • Céline Mias - CARE International, EU Representative & Head of Office; representing Generation Nutrition
  • Wim Olthof - Deputy Head of Unit, INTPA F3 Unit, Sustainable Agri-Food Systems and Fisheries

Southern Africa CLAB Africa Regional Workshops

24th June 2022. 
The 1st Southern Africa Workshop will elevate Africa’s specific knowledge as it specifically relates to climate change, land, agriculture, and biodiversity responses which may support the arguments of the African States and development institutions in their various negotiations and policy framework discussions.

Register 👉🏼 https://bit.ly/39Px0sD

Thursday, June 23, 2022

Water quality and water resource management in Africa

The Fondation L’Oréal and UNESCO have worked together for more than 20 years to help empower more women scientists to achieve scientific excellence and participate equally in solving the great challenges facing humanity. Each year they honour five brilliant female scientists, promote their work globally and empower them to act as role models for aspiring women scientists and future generations.

To support women-led scientific excellence in addressing societal needs worldwide, one Laureate from each of the five major regions of the world is awarded: Africa and the Arab States, Asia and the Pacific, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, and North America.

Professor Catherine Ngila was selected as the 2021 Laureate for Africa and the Arab States. She was awarded for her ground-breaking contribution to water quality and water
resource management in Africa. She has pioneered nanotechnology based analytical methods for monitoring and removing industrial water pollutants, creating a major positive impact by enabling millions of families to benefit from safer drinking water.

Prof Jane Catherine Ngila is currently the Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Academic and Student Affairs (DVC-AA) at Riara University.

More information on the awards can be found here in this press book.

Professor Catherine Ngila is awarded for her groundbreaking contribution to water quality and water resource management in Africa. Her entrepreneurial flair and enquiring scientific mind have seen her pioneer nanotechnology based analytical methods for monitoring and removing industrial water pollutants, creating a major positive impact by enabling millions of families to benefit from safer drinking water. 

Prof. Ngila’s chief innovation lies in using electro-spun, nano-absorbent fibers and nano-composite membranes (derived from chemical resins and biomass materials) to detect and remove trace metals (such as lead, zinc and aluminum) and toxic chemical substances. And her team’s modeling of wastewater treatment plants is helping wastewater treatment plant managers in Johannesburg, South Africa, to improve their effluent discharge. As Africa continues to industrialize, her work will become ever more important in protecting human health and aquatic life. 
“Water research is close to my heart in that, water is life! Nanotechnology can play a vital role in water purification techniques. My dream is to produce a commercially viable water nano-filter that removes contaminants in one filtration cycle, enabling rural African families to install affordable water filters in their homes.” 
Girls and women throughout the country and across Sub-Saharan Africa often walk long distances to collect water and firewood to purify it through boiling, typically over smoky cookstoves or by using fabric to act as a water filter. By scaling up the production of household water filters – using cost-effective materials such as agricultural ‘waste’ including sugarcane bagasse, maize stalks and dried algae, to absorb contaminants – more families would gain access to safe water. 

As a child growing up in Kenya’s Kitui County, Prof. Ngila experienced these challenges firsthand and saw the impact of this heavy domestic burden on girls’ education. 
“Before going to primary school, I would walk up to 3km to fetch water, and as soon as lessons finished for the day, I would run home to fetch firewood and later pound maize to prepare food. Boys were exempted from household chores, so from an early young age, I felt discriminated against for being a girl. I promised myself that education would be my way out of hardship.” 
Prof. Ngila persevered with her studies, encouraged by her father, a former tribal chief (her mother passed away when she was a young child). She had the good fortune to study at an all-girls secondary school, free from gender stereotypes, and here, her interest in chemistry blossomed, inspired by her chemistry teacher. She later graduated as the top student at Kenyatta University’s science faculty in 1986, where she began pursuing her interest in water resource management. 

With universities and laboratories in her native Kenya facing funding, resource and infrastructure challenges, Prof. Ngila continued her research in Australia, where she obtained her doctoral degree from UNSW in 1996 before returning to Kenya to lecture at Kenyatta University, and later in Botswana and South Africa. At the University of Johannesburg, she experienced a major ‘Eureka’ moment by using electro-spinning cellulose to extract individual nano-fibers. This had previously been thought impossible, as cellulose is restricted by its limited solubility in common solvents and inability to melt, preventing the separation of such fibers. 

Prof. Ngila and her doctoral student Stephen Musyoka overcame these challenges by applying a high-voltage electric field to a modified cellulose solution, producing biopolymer nanofibers with diameters in the range of 100-500nm – and delivering a high-impact approach for water purification. As a senior woman scientist in Kenya (where just five of the 31 public universities have women vice chancellors), Prof. Ngila has found it hard to break the glass ceiling, often finding herself sidelined by male counterparts in decision-making. The ‘multitasking’ burden faced by senior women scientists – conducting research while acting as role models and being the ‘token woman’ on multiple boards and councils – also undermines their ability to flourish personally and professionally. It may even result in reinforcing their sense of isolation and exclusion from laboratory working culture, which in turn limits their career opportunities. In some cases, it can leave women susceptible to harassment. 

Despite this, she remains undeterred in her conviction to fight gender discrimination
“Excellent science and innovation require the talents of both women and men. We need the complementary skills and values of both genders to create a balanced, holistic approach to leadership.” 
As the Acting Executive Director of the African Academy of Sciences (AAS) and former Chair of the AAS working group on education and gender, Prof. Ngila dreams of both influencing decision making and STEM policy for women and girls, and mobilising research funding to establish a state of-the-art laboratory for promising analytical chemists. When women scientists are able to form a “critical mass” in the workplace, they will be able to better advocate for themselves and build stronger support networks. She considers that the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science International Awards will “enable [her] to continue [her]commitment to science with energy and passion, and act as a strong role model for women and girls in Africa”.

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Remote training tools to support Farmer Field Schools during COVID-19 and beyond

23 June 2022.
11 am CEST Remote training tools to support Farmer Field Schools during COVID-19 and beyond. by FAO The event will include presentations from field experiences and a panel discussion as well as a sharing sessions to gather experiences and ideas from FFS practitioners around the world.

Register here!
Panel discussion - How can remote training be used to support FFS trainings?
  • Jam Khalid (FAO Pakistan)
  • Pranati Mohanraj (CARE USA)
  • Deborah Duveskog (FAO Resilience Team for Eastern Africa)
  • Winnie Nalyongo (FAO) - A wider perspective on FFS and digital tools: tips for e-powerment of FFS
  • Anne-Sophie Poisot (FAO) - Conclusions

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Jobs, innovation and rural value chains in the context of climate transition

22 - 24 June 2022. Jobs, innovation and rural value chains in the context of climate transition: Bridging the gap between research and policy by IFAD

The Conference will be a High-level forum that will feature IFAD’s landmarks: Excellence, Partnership, Collaboration.

Extract of sessions

22/06 The 50x2030 Initiative to Close the Agricultural Data Gap 

  • Introduction to the 50x2030 Initiative: A Multilateral Partnership to Close the Agricultural Data Gap Vasco MOLINI World Bank
  • Strengthening Data Production and Dissemination: 50x2030 Support to Produce the Necessary Agricultural and Rural Data Christophe DUHAMEL FAO 
  • Enhancing Data Use for Evidence-Based Decision Making: The 50x2030 Approach to Strengthening the Research to Policy Bridge Sara SAVASTANO IFAD 
  • 50x2030 Data as Key Inputs for the National Development Plans and Programmes in Senegal Ibrahima MENDY DAPSA International Development Association (IDA) 
  • Funding Support for the 50x2030 Initiative Pierella PACI World Bank 
  • Perspective of an International Donor on the Use of Data and Evidence to Inform Policy, Decision-Making and Establish Investment Priorities Julianna DRINAN Gates Foundation

22/06 Rapid Integrated Assessment (RIA) Session 1 Measuring Resilience 

  • Measuring and Monetizing Resilience in IFAD Operations Jo PURI, Sara SAVASTANO IFAD 
  • What and How Well are We Learning About How to Build Resilience? Chris BARRETT Cornell University 
  • Resilience of People and Resilience of Food Systems – Policy Options Joachim VON BRAUN University of Bonn 
  • Achieving Sustainable Agri-food System Transformation in Africa: The Importance of Resilience Louise FOX1, Thomas JAYNE2 1 Brookings Institution, 2 Michigan State University

23/06 Rapid Integrated Assessment (RIA) Session 4

  • Investing in Value Chains for Rural Transformation Chair(s): Ben DAVIS (FAO) 
  • What Does the Literature Tell Us About the Role of Value Chains in Rural Transformation? Anne GESARE TIMU IFAD 
  • Which Lessons Can We Learn from Impact Assessments? Athur MABISO IFAD 
  • Project Design and Implementation Perspectives Mylene KHERALLAH, Nadhem MTIMET IFAD 
  • Challenges in VC Projects' Implementation Luca ALINOVI Farmshine, Kenya

23/06 Value Chain I 

  • Evolution of the Beef Value Chains and Employment Generation Potential in Uganda John ILUKOR World Bank 
  • Jobs, Rice and Inclusive Value Chains: Employment effects from modernizing rice cultivation in Côte d’Ivoire Veronica MICHEL GUTIERREZ, Luc CHRISTIAENSEN, Daniel GNIZA, Dossou Ghislain AIHOUNTON World Bank 
  • The Socio-economic Performances of Conventional, Organic and Genetically Modified Cotton: Evidence from Western Burkina Faso Yirviel Janvier METOUOLE MEDA1 , Pam ZAHONOGO2 , Irene Susana EGYIR3 , John Baptist Donsaananang JATOE3 1 Université de Dédougou; 2 Université Thomas Sankara; 3 University of Ghana

23/06 CGIAR Organized Session 

  • Documenting The Reach And The Role Of Technological Innovations On Ethiopia Agricultural Transformation Chair(s): Karen MACOURS (CGIAR SPIA, PSE) 
  • Evaluation of Large-Scale Government Effort to Improve Fertilizer Use in Ethiopia Thomas Woldu ASSEFA1, Ellen MCCULLOUGH1, Guush BERHANE2 1 University of Georgia, 2 IFPRI Do 
  • Social Protection Programs Reduce Vulnerability to Food and Nutrition Insecurity? Evidence from Urban Ethiopia Bethelem NEGEDE1, Katia COVARRUBIAS2, Ana Paula DE LA O CAMPOS2, Hailemariam TEKLEWOLD3 1 Wageningen University, 2 FAO, 3 Environment and Climate Research Center/Policy Studies Institute 
  • Do safety nets promote resilience to weather shocks? Evidence from Ethiopia’s Productive Safety Net Program (PSNP) Martha KIBRU Addis Ababa University 
  • Labour Markets, Agricultural Innovations, and Transfer Programmes Giulio SCHINAIA University of Oxford

23/06 Bridging Research and Policy Gap - 4:30pm - 5:30pm (CEST)

  • Lessons Learned and Opportunities to Close the Gap Chair(s): Katherine MEIGHAN (IFAD) Connecting Policy Research and Policymakers. A Comparison of AAAE and AfDB Experiences Guy-Blaise NKAMLEU AAEA/AFDB 
  • How the World Bank Bridges the Gap Between Policy Makers and Academic Research. Madhur GAUTAM World Bank 
  • Science and Policy Interface in the Research and Innovations activities of the EU Leonard MIZZI EU 
  • Evidence in Developing WFP’s Priorities and Assessing their Programmes Andrea COOK WFP 
  • Lessons Learned in Strengthening Policy Research Capacity and Influence in Africa Thomas JAYNE Michigan State University 
  • The Perspective of Academies of Sciences Bridging Research and Policy Joachim VON BRAUN University of Bonn

24/06 Jobs in Food System Transformation 

  • Opening Remarks Maximo TORERO FAO 
  • Taking Stock of Recent Trends Kate SCHNEIDER Johns Hopkins University
  • Jobs in post-production Stella NORDHAGEN GAIN 
  • Jobs in the Transformation to Regenerative Agriculture: Micro Level Evidence from Rice in India Barbara HARRIS-WHITE University of Oxford 
  • Jobs and the Political Economy of Food Systems Change Jo SWINNEN CGIAR-IFPRI

24/06 Experience Economy Model 

The session will present innovative ideas for investment projects in developing countries to transform agriculture goods produced locally into components of the “experience economy” in which consumers are willing to pay premium prices for products and services that provide additional intangible “experiences”. The digital economy could help at selling those goods everywhere in the world and International Organizations like IFAD could identify new ways to support the initial transaction costs (i.e. communication and transport costs). When digital economy is supported youth labour market is strengthened. Linking the private sector and digital platforms – an area where IFAD is already expanding – has already happened in Low and Middle Income Countries like China, India, Georgia, and in the wine industry.

During this session Ms. Jo Puri will present innovative ideas for the agriculture midstream that are learned from the 2021 RDR of IFAD while Professor Ashenfelter and Professor Swinnen will animate the discussion with examples from the experience economy model for agriculture produce. 
  • Innovative Ideas to Use the Experience Economy Model to Accelerate the Quiet Revolution in the Midstream of Agrifood Value Chains Chair(s): Sara SAVASTANO (IFAD
  • Evidence from the RDR 2019 Jo PURI IFAD 
  • Lessons from the Experience Economy Models and Evolution of the Wine Value Chains Orley ASHENFELTER Princeton University 
  • Discussion Jo SWINNEN CGIAR-IFPRI

Science Granting Councils Initiative in sub-Saharan Africa (SGCI)

Deadline 30 July 2022.

IDRC announced that through the partnership between IDRC and the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), the Science Granting Councils Initiative in sub-Saharan Africa (SGCI) is calling for proposals to support the strengthening of national research and innovation funding 
agencies in West Africa

The Science Granting Councils Initiative in sub-Saharan Africa (SGCI) is a 5-year Initiative which aims to strengthen the capacities of Science Granting Councils (SGCs) in sub-Saharan Africa in order to support research and evidence-based policies that will contribute to economic and social development.

The funder is inviting proposals from organisations to design and deliver this support targeting six countries in West Africa. This work will strengthen agencies where they already exist, and where they do not exist it will support the development of frameworks for establishing new agencies.

The work will take place in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal and Sierra Leone.

Background:

The SGCI was launched in March 2015 initially as a partnership of the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth
and Development Office (FCDO), Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and South Africa’s National Research Foundation (NRF). SGCI-1 strengthened the abilities of Councils from 15 countries to: manage research, design and monitor research programmes based on use of robust Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) indicators, support knowledge transfer to the private sector and strengthen partnerships between SGCs and with other science system actors. This first partnership (SGCI-1) ended in September 2020, overlapping with a second 5-year phase (SGCI-2) which began in June 2018 through additional investments by the Swedish Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), IDRC and NRF. 

The German Research Foundation (DFG) joined in November 2019 as an Associate Funder, contributing towards specific activities. In February 2022, we welcomed additional support to the SGCI from the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation in partnership with IDRC and NRF. Science Granting Councils (SGCs) from 16 countries in Eastern, Western and Southern Africa have partnered with us in the delivery of the programme. The SGCI aims to strengthen the capacities of these SGCs to support research and evidence-based policies that will contribute to economic and social development.

Science and research for resilient, healthy and sustainable food systems

22 June 2022. 12:30-14:00 (CET). Science and research for resilient, healthy and sustainable food systems

The challenges facing agrifood systems are significant, wide-ranging, and interlinked. Science can play a crucial role in offering solutions and designing integrated policies in addressing these challenges. A wide range of approaches, technologies and practices exist that can contribute to transforming agrifood systems to nourish people, nurture the planet, advance equitable livelihoods and build resilient ecosystems. Science and innovation underpin them all.

This event will seek to highlight how science can contribute to progressing on the agrifood system transformation while supporting countries in achieving of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

This discussion was divided into two panel discussions:
  1. The first panel highlighted the Food Systems Assessment project developed by CIRAD in collaboration with FAO and the European Union and draw lessons from its findings.
  2. The second panel brought together scientists, academics and civil society to reflect on their role in the transition to more sustainable food systems in the context of increasing.
Introductory remarks - Ismahane Elouafi
  • Chief Scientist - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
Panel discussion on developing sustainable food systems in practice
  • Helène David-Benz - Agro-economist researcher - French Agricultural Research and Cooperation Organization (CIRAD)
  • Philippe Thomas - Head of Sector for Food and agricultural systems, Crisis and Resilience - European Commission Directorate-General for International Partnerships (DG INTPA)
  • Mohammed Mansouri - Director - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Investment Center
Panel discussion on scientific, academic and civil society communities contributions to sustainable food systems
  • Jean-François Soussana - Vice President for International Issues - French National  Research Instute for Agriculture, Food and Environment (INRAE)
  • Bernard Lehmann - Chairman - High-Level Panel of Experts of the Committee on World Food Security
  • Josep Puxeu Rocamora- Vice-president - European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) Agriculture, Rural Development and the Environment (NAT) Section
  • Philippe Baret - Professor, Catholic University of Louvain (UCL)
Concluding remarks
  • Raschad Al-Khafaji - Director - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Liaison Office in Brussels
  • Philippe Petithuguenin - Deputy Director-General for Rearch and Strategy -  French Agricultural Research and Cooperation Organization (CIRAD)
Related:

The European Green Deal is being reassessed in a highly securitised environment, which has an effect on Europe’s own transition perspectives, but can also alter the global green transition and long-term credibility of the EU. Alfonso Medinilla, Koen Dekeyser and Karim Karaki look at how food systems and green energy priorities have shifted since the war in Ukraine and suggest ways for the EU to maintain its ‘Green Deal diplomacy’.

Food System transformation into Practice

16 June 2022.  Food System transformation into Practice

The closing session of the webinar series included a synthesis by the organisers, followed by two interactive panel discussions. The closing webinar, looked at the outcomes of the six previous webinars and their recordings here.
  • What are key takeaways from the series?
  • Does the use of the frameworks eventually increase impact (on the ground)? When and how?
  • For whom is the added value of using a food systems perspective the biggest?

Young experts' perspectives on food system transformation (in studio)

  • Bram Peters, Food Security and Food Systems Advisor at Cordaid
  • Anne Dorst, Advisor Knowledge Management - International Development at RVO
  • Jackline Owili, Knowledge Broker at Netherlands Food Partnership

Experiences and reflections on food system transformation 

  • Ones Karuho, Head of markets, AGRA, Kenya
  • Nathalie Ingabire, Nutritionist, SNV, Rwanda
  • Cynthia Onyangore, Managing director Trade Up Commodities Ltd, Netherlands / Kenya

Resources

Upscaling private sector participation and science-based outreach in West Africa

22 - 23 June 2022. 
Upscaling private sector participation and science-based outreach in West Africa. hosted by CSIR-STEPRI in Accra, Ghana. Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (STEPRI) one of thirteen institutes under the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in Ghana.

Objectives:

  • Informing stakeholders about the AU-EU Platform for research and innovation on FNSSA
  • Linking small businesses to existing research and innovation hubs; 
  • Promoting the involvement of private sector in research and innovation programmes; 
  • Encouraging exchanges on communication strategies and mechanisms for science-based outreach; 
  • Strengthening Europe - Africa collaboration on Food and Nutrition Security and Sustainable Agriculture. 
The major output of this workshop is a workshop report, which will be presented at the stakeholder meeting organised back-to-back to the AU EU Senior Officials Meeting scheduled for 13th July 2022 
in Brussels.

Sessions

22/06. Session 1: Opening Session 

  • Dr. Mrs Wilhemina Quaye, Director, CSIR-STEPRI, Ghana 
  • Prof. Paul P. Bosu, Director-General, CSIR, Ghana 
  • Dr. Rose Omari, LEAP4FNSSA WP2 Co-Leader, CSIR-STEPRI, Ghana 
  • Mr. Stefan Haffner (WP2 Leader for LEAP4FNSSA) DLR, Germany

22/06 Session 2: Potentials of Private Sector participation in Research and Innovation Programmes

  • Dr. Dominic Quainoo, Association of Ghana Industries  
  • Mr. Julius Bradford Lamptey, Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industry 
  • Dr. King David Amoah, Farmers Organisation Network in Ghana  
  • Mrs. Lizzy Igbine, Women Agro Allied Farmers Association, Nigeria  
  • Dr Kees Blockland, Agri-entrepreneurship Expert and Influencer; Former CEO of Agriterra, Dutch International Farmers Organization, Netherlands  
  • Moderator: Dorra FIANI, Knowledge Economy Foundation, Egypt 
LEAP4FNSSA Project and the Proposed International Research Consortium
  • Dr. Irene Annor-Frempong, LEAP4FNSSA Coordinator, FARA

22/06 Session 3: Strategies and mechanisms for successful science-based outreach on Food and Nutrition Security and Sustainable Agriculture - focus on West Africa

  • Dr. Nathalie Kpera, National Institute of Agricultural Research of Benin (INRAB), Benin 
  • Dr. Eveline Sawadogo, Institute of Environment and Agricultural Research (INERA), Burkina Faso 
    "We are finding researchers who are searching, but we are searching for researchers who are finding" (quote from former president Sankara) 
    "Policy makers need to trust their own researchers"
  • Dr. Seth Manteaw, Institute for Scientific & Technological Information, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR-INSTI), Ghana 
  • Dr. Yarama D. Ndirpaya, Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria (ARCN) 
  • Dr. Danley Colecraft Aidoo, Department of Agricultural Extension, University of Ghana
  • Dr. Hudu Zakaria, Department of Agricultural Innovation Communication. University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana 

23/06 Session 4: Role of policies in FNSSA Research and Innovation 

  • Mr. Ernest Aubee, Agriculture and Rural Development Directorate, ECOWAS Commission, Abuja, Nigeria 
  • Mr. Paul Siameh, Agricultural Extension Directorate, Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Ghana 
  • Mr. Kwamena Quaison, Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation, Ministry of  Environment, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Ghana 
  • Prof. Natewinde Sawadogo, University of Thomas Sankara, Burkina Faso 
  • Ms. Maria Maia, Department for International Relations, FCT, Portugal 
  • Dr. Adelaide Asante Science, Technology, & Innovation, MESTI Ghana, Chief Operating Officer at AIMS Ghana
    "We need tailor made training module on capacity strengthening to be able to support the private sector with research and support their needs AND encourage private sector to collaborate with research"
    "Tech-hubs are conducive to reach out to entrepreneurs but these hubs have no string link with academia and researchers. They promote technology which can be of industrial use."

23/06 Session 5: The Power of Networks – Strategies for external communication and science-based outreach

  • Dr. Isabelle HIPPOLYTE Scientific officer at the Department Environments, Ecosystems and Biological Resources in French National Research Agency (ANR), France.
  • She is the coordinator of LEAP-Agri: a joint Europe Africa Research and Innovation initiative related to Food and Nutrition Security and Sustainable Agriculture (FNSSA). She is also member of other ERA-NET Co-funds such as: Sustainable Crop Production (SusCrop), Coordinating Action in Plant Sciences (ERAcaps), a network on transition towards more sustainable and resilient agri-food systems with digital technology (ICT-AGRI-FOOD) and the funders network Innovating the forest-based bioeconomy (Forestvalue). In LEAP4FNSSA Dr. Hippolyte is co-leading the task on Funders network formulating “Recommendations of core elements of funders networks and funding mechanisms”. She is also task leader of the Green ERA HUB “Collaboration with the Mediterranean region and African countries”.
  • Mr. Benjamin Abugri, Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA), Ghana  
  • Mr. Francois Stepman, PAEPARD
  • Prof. Justin Pita – West African Virus Epidemiology (WAVE) for Food Security, (Rep for (CORAF), Cote D’Ivoire 
  • Mr. Abdellah-Nii Commey, West African Science Service Centre on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use (WASCAL), Ghana 
  • Dr. Daniele Rossi, Copa Cogeca, Belgium 
  • Moderation: Katharina Kuss, Go Africa, Germany 
How can research and innovation be upscaled? 
  • Moderator: Henning Knipschild, Federal Office for Agriculture and Food, Germany 

Shared articles:


Le financement de la recherche par les acteurs de la chaîne de valeur
  • 11 Mars 2013. Dakar. Une approche novatrice de financement de l'ARD est le financement de la recherche par les acteurs de la chaîne de valeur.

Shared cases:

African Food Tradition Revisited by Research (AFTER)

Matooke Agribusiness Incubator (Uganda) 

  • FREVASEMA has exported over 160MT of fresh vacuum sealed matooke the last 6 months fresh under USFDA Certification to USA and Australia."  
  • Contact: Byarugaba Bazirake George

KOKO Plus

  • “KOKO Plus” is a Protein/Micro-nutrient powder to be added to any complementary foods. 
  • Adding one sachet of “KOKO Plus” to complementary foods significantly improves the nutritional content of the foods. 
  • “KOKO Plus” is recommended for all parents who wish for infant’s healthy growth.

Sojagnon/Benin

The involvement of the private company Benin Agribusiness Incubation Hub (BAIH-Sarl) and the collaboration with the University of Abomey-Calavi has been extensively monitored and documented over the years[1]. The outcomes of this applied research was presented in international trade fairs (Third edition of the Food Processing & Packaging Exposyum (2015)[2] and during the European Development Days (EDD 2017).

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

IFAD Innovation Day

21-24 June 2022. Innovation Day is the first day of the IFAD '22 conference. The conference, entitled “Jobs, innovation and value chains during climate change: Bridging the gap between research and policy”, runs from 21-24 June.Innovation leaders from the public and private sectors, academia, civil society, research organizations, international financial institutions and the United Nations will gather to share knowledge and lessons learned on how to originate, ideate, pilot, test and scale up solutions that contribute to facing and solving some of the most pressing challenges in rural development and climate-change adaptation. Innovation Day will focus on how policy and public-private-partnerships can support and finance all stages of innovation.

In addition to the main plenary sessions, Innovation Day will feature side-events where innovative approaches and technologies will be presented in the form of demos, technical dialogues among experts and interactive discussions with the audience.
EVENT SITE + AGENDA - Register separately for the four side events:
  • 10:00 – 11:30 Frontier technologies for land tenure REGISTER New technologies that have emerged in the past decade present new opportunities for land registry systems to facilitate land recordation and transactions more securely and efficiently, while increasing access and transparency, all in the interest of securing land tenure for small-scale farmers and other marginalised groups.
  • 12:00 – 13:00 Government policies for innovation REGISTER Government policies can play a key role encouraging or constraining the development of innovations to increase rural income, employment, and adaptation to and mitigation of climate change. In this session innovators from NGOs and firms working in India, Indonesia, West Africa and East Africa will discuss the opportunities and challenges to innovators and the role that governments and donor organizations can play in supporting innovations and adoptions of innovations.   
  • 14:00 – 15:00 Leveraging advanced analytics REGISTER The session will cover examples of innovations developed by partners international finance institutes for both portfolio systematization and knowledge management, and to better target operations and inform designs of new projects
  • 16:00 – 17:00 Innovation and food systems REGISTER
Innovation and food systems
This side event on Innovation Day – the first day of the IFAD22 conference – will look into the role of innovation in nutrition-sensitive agriculture – a food-based approach to agricultural development that puts nutritionally rich foods and dietary diversity at the heart of overcoming undernutrition, overnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies. The event will place special focus on the Mediterranean cuisine, as an example for a traditional healthy diet. An interactive panel will discuss the role of innovation in sustainable diets, and the importance of building on traditional knowledge in the context of climate transition. At the event, the Italian Network for the Euro-Med Dialogue RIDE will also announce their proposal to open a Center for Innovation, Higher Education and Scientific Diplomacy on Sustainability for Mediterranean youth and women located on Ponza Island (south of Rome, Italy).