IFPRI Conference Highlights Role of Resilience in Ensuring Food and Nutrition Security

IFPRI Logo18 May 2014: At the ‘Building Resilience for Food and Nutrition Security' conference organized by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), its 2020 Vision Initiative and partners, participants called for the inclusion of a goal to eliminate hunger by 2025 in the post-2015 development agenda. 

The conference was the culmination of a two-year global consultation process meant to catalyze action on the incorporation of resilience into the post-2015 agenda and to improve investments and policies on strengthening resilience and food and nutrition security for all.

The meeting also saw the introduction of the Food Security Climate Resilience Facility (FoodSECuRE) by Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director, the UN World Food Programme (WFP). The facility will reinforce community resilience by responding to forecast climate shocks before they occur.

At the conference, Hailemariam Dessalegn, Prime Minister, Ethiopia, emphasized the role of agriculture systems in ensuring a nation's resilience. He highlighted Ethiopia's investment in “raising the productivity of small farmers, strengthening agricultural marketing systems, bringing more land under irrigation, and reducing land degradation by soil and water conservation measures including biological measures for sustainable land management (SLM).”

“Renewed efforts to cooperate and collaborate on a resilience agenda” will determine success in coping and thriving in the presence of shocks, uncertainty and extreme events, according to IFPRI Director General Shenggen Fan. He said “strengthened resilience in turn will be key to achieving an end to hunger.”

The conference discussed: impacts of increasing standardization on food system resilience; ‘nutrition-sensitive landscapes;' disproportionate effects of major shocks on poor and vulnerable communities; and investments to eliminate hunger and nutrition. Participants also addressed measuring resilience, including: collecting gender disaggregated data and more frequent data; using information and communication technologies (ICTs) to complement household survey data; and conducting environmental mapping and risk assessments.

The meeting was complimented by a side event where Caribbean and Pacific participants supported higher consumption of locally grown produce to ensure better health, and discussed the challenges faced by small island developing States (SIDS) and opportunities for enhancing resilience in the two regions. The conference was preceded by a live Twitter chat where participants shared examples of projects that are boosting community resilience to shocks and stressors such as scarce natural resources and climate change.

Over 800 participants attended the conference, which took place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from 15-17 May 2014. [IPFRI Press Release] [Conference Website] [IFPRI Conference Highlights] [Nwanze Statement] [IFPRI Press Release on Side Event] [Ban Statement] [IFPRI Summary of 2020Resilience Twitter Chat] [CGIAR Agriculture and Ecosystems Blog on Resilience]