By 2050 the world population is estimated to have grown to around 9.7 billion people . The global challenge is not only how to feed the growing population, but also how to provide a nutritious diet for healthy living that can be sustained for generations. Present food systems do not ensure nutritious diets, reflected in the high levels of malnutrition (both under- and over) in the world. Food systems need to be transformed to sustainably address the societal challenges and move from just supplying sufficient food to providing sufficient high quality diets for all.
Towards food system innovation balancing health with social and economic sustainability outcomes
Food systems considers all the actors, elements and activities that relate to primary producing, processing, distributing, preparing and consuming food and waste disposal; and the socio-economic and environmental outcomes of these activities (HLPE, 2014). The course explores food systems from a dietary perspective and discuss which components are related to the diet gaps for different populations groups at national, regional and global level. It discusses possible actions to be taken to transform the food system for addressing the gaps and how these actions can be leveraged in a sustainable way.
You will gain new insights about:
- the components of food systems and their relevance for provision of healthy and sustainable diets over time at national, regional and global level;
- the stakeholders involved and influencing food systems;
- possible actions for food systems innovations to ensure nutritious diets;
- Liinking with policy makers, and advocacy for policy actions for healthy and sustainable diets.
Strengthened competence to:
- understand the concepts of food systems, sustainability, agriculture, food and nutrition security, dietary gaps and their interface;
- Iidentify dietary gaps for different population groups, and identify the components of the food system responsible for the identified gaps;
- identify public and private stakeholders at different levels and their influence on the food system;
- formulate alternative innovations needed in the food system for addressing the identified dietary gaps for different population groups in a sustainable way.
- design programs to implement identified innovations, including lobby and advocacy;
- apply tools for monitoring food system changes and outcomes;
The training targets staff of governmental and non-governmental organisations in the following positions:
- policy and planning staff at the national and sub-national level with responsibility for promoting community and household food and nutrition security within different sectors (agriculture,education, health, community development, local government, planning, etc.);
- staff working at coordination level in planning, management and management of multi-sectoral food security and nutrition programs at different levels;
- staff working in (action-oriented) agriculture, nutrition and/or health related research, advisory and teaching positions directly relevant to food and nutrition security;
- MSc and PhD students, and post-docs of Wageningen University.
The course is job-oriented and the training approach is interactive, experience as well as evidence-based: it provides the participants with the possibility to learn from expert facilitators as well as from each other. Transfer of knowledge goes hand in hand with case studies, working groups, etc. A mix of participants with different backgrounds, yet common interests, will provide a good basis for the exchange of experiences.
Food Systems Innovations
The course focus on options available within food systems to deliver high-quality diets to different population groups. The training addresses the following topics:
- Principles and indicators of a food system, and healthy diets in different population groups and how are they related;
- linkages between national, regional and global food systems;
- food system public and private stakeholders and their interaction, partnerships and alliances;
- policy issues and actions relevant to sustainable food systems transformations for healthy diets;
- designing programs implementing priority actions based on the local context, balancing health with social, ecological and economic sustainability outcomes;
- monitoring and evaluation food system changes and results.
We expect you to have a BSc
(as a minimum) or its equivalent in the field of food and nutrition, food science, home economics, agriculture, medicine or a related field of study. You have at least three years of professional experience related to the theme of the course, or you do a related MSc in the area of nutrition, health, agriculture.