Governance

Food security in a globally-connected world will require better governance at all levels – local, national and international.

The current edition of the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B is a special Discussion Meeting Issue on ‘Achieving food and environmental security: new approaches to close the gap’, following a meeting that took place at the Royal Society, in London between 3 and 4 December 2012, to explore some of avenues that science is currently pursuing.

The special edition, organized and edited by Guy Poppy, Paul Jepson, John Pickett and Michael Birkett, includes a paper by Professor Charles Godfray and Dr Tara Garnett, Oxford University, which sets out the case for Sustainable Intensification, arguing that more food needs to be produced but with less impact on the environment. The paper also investigates how Sustainable Internsification may interact with other food policy agendas, in particular, land use and biodiversity, animal welfare and human nutrition.

In the paper, they explain the logic underlying Sustainable Intensification:

  1. That increased production must play at least some role in meeting the food security challenge of the next fifty years
  2. That the vast majority of this increase must come from existing agricultural land
  3. That increasing the sustainability of food production is of equal importance
  4. That we must consider a broad range of tools and production methods to achieve these goals.
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A consortium brought together by the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food has received a major award from the Wellcome Trust as part of their 'Our Planet, Our Health' programme.

The project will look at the consequences of the global increase in the consumption of meat, dairy and other animal-sourced foods and how it affects the environment and human health.  It will focus on how to achieve changes towards more sustainable and healthy diets.

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The Environmental Change Institute is pleased to announce that a Belmont Forum grant has been awarded for research planning on food system governance arrangements in southern African. Partners include the Universities of Newcastle, Stellenbosch, Cape Town, Florida and Wageningen, with coordination by provided by ECI.

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Cross-university, interdisciplinary food systems training to improve food security and environmental outcomes

The Environmental Change Institute’s Food Systems Programme is pleased to announce an exciting new programme of teaching and learning for graduate students at the Environmental Change Institute and four other leading universities in England.

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The Environmental Change Institute is pleased to announce a new internship available to any currently matriculated Oxford students with Good Food Oxford, a Sustainable Food Cities initiative that aims to identify and catalyse actions by individuals and organisations that will promote a healthy, fair, ethical and environmentally sustainable food system in and around Oxford.

Good Food Oxford is offering a placement for an intern to help develop monitoring and evaluation modeling to measure the impact of their work. The intern will be required to compile background data and statistics on their three strategy areas in order to form a baseline from which to establish measurable deliverables. They will then have the opportunity to work closely with the team to establish monitoring and evaluation models, and feed into their policy and strategy work.

To find out more, please read the Good Food Oxford Specification or contact Emma Weisbord, the Sustainability Internship Programme Coordinator.

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The Oxford Food Governance Group seminars last term on the Politics and Practices of Food are now available to listen to online as podcasts from the Oxford University podcast website:

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As part of the Oxford Martin School's video series of "Big Questions", you can now watch Programme Director Professor Charles Godfray answer some key questions about the future of food:

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Several talks at this year's Hay Festival are by Oxford Martin School professors, covering topics including the future of food.

Professor Ian Goldin discusses his book, "Is the Planet Full?": Can our planet support the demands of the ten billion people anticipated to be the world’s population by the middle of this century? The Oxford Professor of Globalization and Development examines the intended and unintended consequences of population and economic growth.
Saturday 24 May 2014, 11.30am, Venue: The Telegraph Stage

Two of the contributors to Ian Goldin’s overview of the world’s population and resources address key issues: Professor Yadvinder Malhi takes a metabolic perspective on our human-dominated planet in "Bigger Than The Biosphere?"Professor Charles Godfray examines the practicality of food production in "Can the World Feed 10 Billion People (Sustainably & Equitably)?"
Saturday 31 May 2014, 11.30am, Venue: The Cube

Professor Sarah Harper discusses "The End of Population Growth?": While it is common to hear about the problems of overpopulation, might there be unexplored benefits of increasing numbers of people in the world? How can we both consider and harness the potential benefits brought by a healthier, wealthier and larger population? May more people mean more scientists to discover how our world works, more inventors and thinkers to help solve the world’s problems, more skilled people to put these ideas into practice
Saturday 31 May 2014, 10am, Venue: Good Energy Stage

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A global switch to diets that rely less on meat and more on fruit and vegetables could save up to 8 million lives by 2050, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by two thirds, and lead to healthcare-related savings and avoided climate damages of $1.5 trillion (US).

 

The study, published today in PNAS, is the first to estimate both the health and climate change impacts of moving towards more plant-based diets for all major world regions.

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Postdoctoral Fellow, food price and food security impacts of dietary transition

Location:  London Campus, Gordon Square

Closing date for applications: 11 April 2014

£32,862 - £38,795 p.a. inclusive of London Allowance, Fixed term for 12 months

Applications are invited for a Postdoctoral Research Officer to work full time on a 12 month project funded by the Leverhulme Centre for Integrative Research in Agriculture and Health (LCIRAH).

The Research Officer will work on the project “Food price and food security impacts of dietary transition”.

They will be based at SOAS in London, working within the London International Development Centre in collaboration with the Food Climate Research Network (FCRN) and the Royal Veterinary College (RVC).

Visit the SOAS website for more information.

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