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January 2012 presentation on the Australian International Food Security Centre by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR)

January 2012 presentation on the Australian International Food Security Centre by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR)

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  • One in seven people in the world suffer chronic hunger Disproportionate percentage of the world’s hungry living on the African continent Africa 75% population live in rural areas 72.9% population live on < $2 per day 27.5% consume inadequate calories 23.6% children < 5 are underweight Opportunity
  • The African Union, through its NEPAD programme, aims to increase both the amount and quality of food produced on the continent and, by doing so, make families more food-secure, exports more profitable, and improve social and political stability. NEPAD manages a number of programmes and projects in six theme areas including: Agriculture and Food Security. Climate Change and National Resource Management. - Cross-cutting Issues, including Gender, Capacity Development and ICT. NEPAD's agricultural programme is guided by the framework provided by the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP).
  • Internationally, the case for investment in agriculture is absolutely compelling. Three quarters of the world’s poor live in rural areas and rely directly or indirectly on agriculture (including fisheries and forests) for livelihoods. Many low income developing countries spend up to 80% of income on food. No country has been able to sustain a rapid transition out of poverty without raising productivity in its agricultural sector. World Bank research indicates that agricultural growth is twice as effective in reducing poverty as non-agricultural growth. IFAD claim that it is up to four times more effective in reducing. Agricultural productivity growth cannot be sustained without research Agriculture is more than farming – research; technology generation and diffusion; input production and delivery; farm-level production; commodity processing; handling (including storage); transport; marketing and trade.
  • It is intended that the Centre can assemble the best teams in Australia to work with the Centre’s collaborators to develop the innovation that the partner countries need.
  • The Centre will foster ‘hands-on’ learning heavily focused on postgraduate and other tertiary education and thereby providing training for highly skilled professionals, it will also involve, to differing extents, appropriate levels of the education and training system
  • These are legislated functions. Essentially we - aim to help developing countries to help themselves - encourage Australia's agricultural scientists to use their skills for the benefit of developing countries and Australia - funds research projects that reflect Australian aid priorities and national research strengths the agricultural R&D priorities of partner countries Maximise aid effectiveness with emphasis on real development outcomes Engagement with NGOs

Background presentation AIFSC Background presentation AIFSC Presentation Transcript

  • AUSTRALIAN INTERNATIONAL FOOD SECURITY CENTRE ACIAR ACIAR
  • Context
    • Food insecurity
      • Enduring challenge of today’s world
      • Disproportionate impact on the African continent
    • Agricultural productivity
      • Common factor in delivering food security
      • Non-uniform across the world
      • Requires an understanding of the problems limiting production
    • Australia
      • Uniquely placed to help deliver solutions
      • Success as a food exporter reliant on agricultural research
    • Africa
      • Productivity constrained by
        • Lack of knowledge of latest agricultural science advances
        • Ability to scale these advances from broad-acre to smallholder settings
  • The AIFSC
    • AIFSC - Australian Intl Food Security Centre
    • CHOGM initiative
    • Portal to access Australian research, technical and policy expertise
    • Tackle major food production, nutrition and water management challenges
    • Africa-focused
  • The AIFSC
    • Committed funding of $33 million over four years
    • Led by ACIAR - http://aciar.gov.au/aifsc
    • Operating a network based on the CRC modality
    • Will
      • Align with African Union’s Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme
      • Complement Australian Government’s Food Security through Rural Development initiative
        • $464 million over four years of which $100 million is for Africa
      • evolve from genuinely consultative processes
  • Role of the AIFSC
    • To assist developing countries maximise the benefits and opportunities of agricultural productivity to achieve food and nutritional security
    • Broad international focus
      • recognises the significance of food security to developing countries across Africa, Asia and the Pacific
      • Particular emphasis given to food security in Africa
    • To provide partner countries access to Australian research, technical and policy expertise in areas of national comparative advantage
    • Expands the work of ACIAR, particularly and initially in African countries, but with scope to broaden its geographic reach in future phases
  • Some AIFSC principles
    • Strategy and program of activities that will deliver results over a four year period
    • Measurable indicators off success in improving food security in developing countries, with initial emphasis on Africa
    • Led by ACIAR but have an identity distinct from ACIAR
    • Operate under the auspices of
      • ACIAR Act 1982
      • ACIAR governance mechanisms
    • Established in a manner consistent with the
      • overall policy directions for the Australian Aid program
      • Strategic Framework for International Agricultural Research
    • Established on
      • genuine partnerships
      • open, honest communication that is personally and culturally sensitive
      • scientific and professional excellence to guide decision making
  • A cooperative approach
    • The Centre will
      • operate on principles of cooperative contribution and collaboration
      • link a range of Australian, African and international research and development agencies
      • Bridge the gap between
        • discovery research
        • international public good research of the CGIAR
        • the requirements of smallholder production systems
  • Partnerships
    • Prospective partners include
      • private sector organisations (both large and small enterprises)
      • industry associations
      • the CGIAR
      • Universities
      • Australian government research agencies such as the CSIRO)
      • national agricultural research systems (NARS)
      • other end users
    • Collaborators will undertake R&D leading to practical outcomes that have positive social and economic impacts
  • Activities of the Centre
    • The Centre is currently defining the appropriate systems in which to create partnerships that will transfer Australian agricultural knowledge to Africa through the following activities:
      • medium to long-term end-user driven collaborative agricultural research for food and nutrition security
      • development of innovation and R&D capacity including education and training programs
      • support to deploy and utilise research outputs and encourage take up by smallholders
    • The Centre will foster ‘hands-on’ learning
      • Heavily focused on postgraduate and other tertiary education
      • Also other levels of the education and training system
  • International conference
    • International conference on African food security
      • To be held in around mid- 2012 under the auspices of the Centre
      • Foundational in formalising the partnerships and priorities for the new Centre
      • Will build on achievements of IFPRI Conference, Increasing Agricultural Productivity and Enhancing Food Security in Africa , Addis Ababa, Nov 2011
        • http://addis2011.ifpri.info/
  • Next steps
    • January 2012
      • Australian institution engagement to explore capacity, comparative advantage and operational options
      • Commissioning of scoping activities to inform design process
    • February 2012
      • ACIAR mission to Africa to engage with regional institutions in the establishment of the strategic focus of the Centre
    • March 2012
      • Australian research institution engagement in developing appropriate partnerships for delivery
      • The Commission on International Agricultural Research to meet with African (and international) research institutions contributing to food security in Africa, including engagement at national Ministerial level
    • April 2012
      • Theme working group meetings in Africa to develop research focus and possible operational approaches
    • June 2012 (TB C)
      • International Conference on African Food Security