By Dr John IngramFood Systems Programme Leader, Environmental Change Institute

The number of extreme weather events around the world appears to be increasing, and this is impacting on global food security. Here Dr. John Ingram of the Environmental Change Institute at Oxford University introduces new research and draws lessons from extreme weather events in Pakistan, Russia, the Philippines and East Africa since 2010.

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Extreme weather events leave populations with not enough food both in the short- and the long-term. A new report by the Environmental Change Institute (ECI), at the School of Geography and the Environment, concludes that better governance could have lessened the impact on the poorest and most vulnerable, and affected populations have been let down by the authorities in past disasters.

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By Abrar Chaudhury

A new journal paper by Oxford-based CCAFS researchers presents a participatory framework for costing agriculture adaptation interventions using varied assumptions of experts and local actors.

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ITV's Tonight Programme this week looked at the Future of Food, considering what new foods we might be eating in the future, such as insects, and where we might be growing our food, such as urban farms and indoor aquapoonics.

Professor Charles Godfray provides commentary on the items discussed.

Watch the episode on the ITV Player here - available until the end of September 2014.

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A recent episode of the BBC World Service's In the Balance looked at the topic of the Future of Food. In the programme, they interview Programme Director, Professor Charles Godfray, about population growth, the Green Revolution and changing demand for food.

Listen again to this programme here or download the podcast of this programme here.

About the programme: "Will we be able to feed the 9 and a half billion people that the UN says will be on the planet by 2050? And if so, which technologies will help the most? We meet the people and businesses working to re-shape the way we'll eat, and farm, in the years to come."

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This week's On the Money was a special edition about the Future of Food. The show included a panel of experts on the food system, including Programme Director, Professor Charles Godfray.

China's buying up the world's big food companies to guarantee its supplies. How do we make sure we're not locked out? After the horse meat scandal are we getting what it says on the tin? And with billions more people on the planet - how do we feed everyone?

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The Environmental Change Institute (ECI) is beginning a new local knowledge exchange, impact, and engagement project called Agile-Ox (“Access to Global Environmental Change Insights for Local Enterprise in Oxfordshire”).

The ECI is appointing a Project Co-ordinator to be responsible for overseeing and implementing the day-to-day activities for Agile-Ox. The Project Co-ordinator will also be responsible with others for planning, implementing and monitoring overall strategy.

The post is funded through the UK Research Councils’ Impact Accelerator Funds which seek to increase the impact of the science funded by the Councils.

Agile-Ox aims to increase collaboration between the University and local organisations and individuals in relation to environmentally-related science, management and enterprise.

The Project Co-ordinator will work under the direction of the ECI Director and in collaboration with a variety of colleagues in ECI and across the University including the individual co-ordinators of the ONE environmental networks initiative on biodiversity, climate, energy, food and water.

For more information and how to apply, please see the job details on the Oxford University Recruitment website.

Deadline: 12 September 2014

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Anthesis, a sustainability consultancy with an Oxford office, has a number of job opportunities in food and agriculture at the moment. The job positions available are to support the work of one of the world’s leading retailers to achieve their ambitious supply chain sustainability strategy.

They are looking to recruit three strong consultants who can provide direct support to their client and its global supply base within one of specialist roles that they are recruiting for.

For more information, please visit the Anthesis website.

Jobs being advertised:

  • Community Manager – Supply Chain, UK
  • Community Manager – Analysis, UK
  • Community Manager – Agriculture, UK

With specialisations in:

  • Retail supply chain expertise
  • Agricultural expertise
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A new book on organic farming in India is coming out in October, written by Oxford Univeristy alum, Sapna Thottathil.

Should you buy organic food? Is it just a status symbol, or is it really better for us? Is it really better for the environment? What about organic produce grown thousands of miles from our kitchens, or on massive corporately owned farms? Is “local” or “small-scale” better, even if it’s not organic? A lot of consumers who would like to do the right thing for their health and the environment are asking such questions.

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Professor Kathy Willis, Co-Director of the Oxford Martin Programme on Resource Stewardship and Associate Director of the Biodiversity Institute, will explore the history of botany in a major new series starting next week on BBC Radio 4.

In her capacity as the Director of Science at Kew Gardens, Professor Willis will present Plants: From Roots to Riches, looking at our changing relationship with plants, from the birth of modern botany right through to the modern day. The 25-part series will feature unprecedented access to the rich heritage and ongoing work of scientists at one of the world’s oldest botanical institutions.

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