Course Details - Food Security in a Changing Climate

Adaptation and mitigation as institutional change processes

Our climate is changing and communities all over the world are affected. Changing climates have severe negative impacts on natural resources and consequently on food and livelihood security. Societies consequently need to learn to cope with the changes predicted, warmer temperatures, drier soils, changes in weather extremes and rising sea levels. At different governance levels and scales, appropriate responses are needed. However in many countries the existing governance structures and processes are not suited to manage climate change and the adaptive capacity and leadership to address the challenges is often lacking.

Developing the capacity to facilitate change

Climate change adaptation and mitigation activities are part of complex change processes. These require the involvement of many stakeholders, for example local communities, farmers, businesses, scientists, policymakers, extension workers, media and civil society organisations. Climate change governance requires these stakeholders to change their practices and shift perceptions and accepted norms. Such change processes can only be successful if a learning oriented approach to climate change governance is adopted. It requires dedicated, motivated individuals and organisations that can promote and facilitate learning. This course encourages you to become a facilitator of change. You will not only get a full understanding of climate change, its impacts and adaptation and mitigation concepts but also strengthen your skills for stakeholder engagement, policy influencing, advocacy and negotiation to help you establish more effective governance structures.

Climate change governance

It is possible to reduce risks by mainstreaming national risk management policy frameworks in policies and programmes for sustainable development. Since climate change is highly complex and uncertain, a learning oriented approach to climate change governance is required. The most important factor influencing the success of climate change governance to date has been engagement by political leadership. In situations where political leaders have taken an active interest, matters have moved forward. Increased understanding of climate change and the transmission of sound scientific advice are essential for good governance.

The capacity to bring stakeholders together in analysing climate change issues and developing strategies to protect food systems, assets and livelihoods against the effects of increasing weather variability and the increased frequency and intensity of extreme events is not sufficient in many developing countries. This course offers conceptual frameworks to understand the importance of climate change, vulnerability and adaptation and mitigation options for improved food security. The training approach is interactive and hands-on. It includes practical fieldwork, case studies and individual action planning. Climate change, food security and change process experts contribute to this course. A mix of participants with different backgrounds yet common interests will allow for exchange of experiences.

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