Announcement: online consultation of USAID, Aligning Research Investments to the Global Food Security Strategy

  • 07th April 2017
  • by secretary

Rationale: Prioritization of investment is critical to ensure resources are focused on the most important areas of research. As we examine the range of research opportunities to contribute to the goals of the GlobalFood Security Strategy (GFSS), USAID is looking into criteria to inform our investments.

Background: The 2011 Research Strategy for Feed the Future emerged from an extensive analysis of the geographic distribution of child undernutrition and poverty, and farming systems in these areas. Through consultations with multiple stakeholders and literature reviews, we identified biophysical, social, and policy constraints in major agroecosystems that research could address to advance the goals of inclusive and sustainable agriculture-led economic growth and nutrition. We used the following key criteria to guide the selection of research priorities:

  • Potential impact (such as value of production, numbers of consumers and producers, income gains, nutrition gains), scalability, and spillover across wide areas 
  • Relevance to poverty, women and children and reduced vulnerability objectives 
  • Likelihood of success: Technical merit, clear pathways for deployment/adoption 
  • Cost/Benefit: Estimated cost to develop technology vs. potential returns in terms of impacts 
  • Economic sustainability for producers/adopters 
  • Natural resources sustainability: water, soil, ecosystem and climate change 
  • Institutional sustainability/impact on capacity: engagement of national and regional partners 
  • Time Frame: timeline, milestones 
  • Risks: potential impacts on vulnerable groups, environment or breakdown in key pathways 

From this overlay of criteria, constraints and research opportunities together, three general categories of priorities emerged: Advancing the Productivity Frontier, Transforming Key Production Systems, and Enhancing Nutrition and Food Safety.

USAID and its partners intend to use your contributions to this AgExchange to inform research programming. This is a critical opportunity to shape the future of food security research.