IFIAD Annual Conference 2020

Covid-19 & Sustainable Food Systems

Transforming food systems in times of crises

IFIAD Annual Conference 2020 - Covid19 and Sustainable Food Systems

The fifth annual conference of IFIAD will take place on Wednesday, 21st October, 2020, via live stream webinar. The theme for this year’s conference will be Covid-19 & Sustainable Food Systems - Transforming food systems in times of crises. With a view towards the Food Systems Summit 2021, we will reflect on the global context and how we can learn from the Covid-19 crisis and transition to more resilient food systems. The conference will also take the timely opportunity to examine the EU-Africa partnership, and initiatives aimed at enhancing collaboration on agri-food and rural economy at a regional level.

Featuring an address by Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Defence, Simon Coveney TD

This year’s speakers are:

  • Dr. Johan Swinnen is Director General of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). He has published extensively on agricultural and food policies, international development, political economy, institutional reforms, trade, and global value chains. Over the course of his career, Dr. Swinnen has been a visiting professor at various universities, including at Stanford University’s Center on Food Security and the Environment.
  • Tom Arnold is Chair of a Task Force on Rural Africa established by the European Commission in May 2018, and is a former Chief Executive of Concern Worldwide (2001-13). He has served on a number of high level bodies including the UN Millennium Project’s Hunger Task Force, the Irish Hunger Task Force,  and as Coordinator a.i. of the Scaling Up Nutrition Movement.
  • Dr. Martin Frick currently serves as the Deputy to the Special Envoy for the UN Food Systems Summit, tasked to provide leadership, guidance and strategic direction towards the 2021 summit.
  • Prof. Corinna Hawkes is Director of the Centre for Food Policy at City, University of London. She has over 20 years’ experience of working with UN agencies, national and city governments, NGOs, think tanks and academia to support the design of more effective action throughout the food system to improve diets, from local-level initiatives to national policies and global strategies.
  • Sonja Vermeulen is Director of Programs at the CGIAR System Organization, leading on coordination of the delivery, performance and results of the shared CGIAR research portfolio, plus future strategies for effective agricultural research for development.
  • Melissa Leach is the Director of the Institute of Development Studies (IDS). A social anthropologist and geographer, her interdisciplinary, policy-engaged research in Africa and beyond links environment, agriculture, health, technology and gender, with particular interests in knowledge, power and the politics of science and policy processes.
  • Michael Taylor is the Director of the International Land Coalition (ILC) within the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). ILC is a global alliance of over 200 inter-governmental and civil society organizations. It works to put people at the centre of land governance, as a fundamental step towards building a just, equitable, and inclusive world in which land rights are secure and poverty is eradicated.
  • Leonard Mizzi is currently Head of Unit at the European Commission, Directorate-General (DG) for International Cooperation and Development (DEVCO) - Rural development, food security and nutrition. His areas of specialisation are governance, agriculture and food and nutrition security, the Mediterranean area, Sub Saharan Africa.
  • Francesco Rampa is Head of Programme at the European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM), where he leads the Sustainable Food Systems team of ECDPM’s Economic and Agricultural Transformation programme. ECDPM is a leading independent think tank that wants to make policies in Europe and Africa work for inclusive and sustainable development.
  • Fatma Ben Rejeb is the Chief Executive Officer of the Pan-African Farmers’ Organisation (PAFO). PAFO is a network of Farmers’ Organisations across the African continent that aims to improve communication, collaboration and information/knowledge sharing among stakeholders. It is Africa’s first continent-wide farmers’ organisation and is an important instrument for rallying direct farmer engagement on Africa’s growth and development agenda.
  • Million Belay is the Coordinator of the African Food Sovereignty Alliance (AFSA). AFSA brings together small-scale food producers, farmers, pastoralists, fisherfolk, indigenous peoples, faith groups, consumers, women, youth and activists from across the continent of Africa to create a united and louder voice for food sovereignty.