Increasing resilience of agricultural landscapes and the UK food system (Image: Jon Bunting)
Global Food Security (GFS) Programme has recently agreed a new five-year interdisciplinary programme of research to tackle resilience of the food system. Amongst its many funders are four UKCDS member organisations.
The programme will address a major food security challenge: ‘Resilience of the UK food system in a global context’. It has been co-designed by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), Natural and Environmental Research Council (NERC), Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs and the Food Standards Agency, in partnership with wider stakeholders.
BBSRC, NERC and ESRC are contributing £14 million, while further contributions are being considered by other GFS partners.
Up to £7 million will be available for the first call of funding, which opens to researchers in September 2015. The funding available through this first call will support 4-6 high quality interdisciplinary research projects, integrating biological, environmental and social sciences.
Research projects must address at least one of the following key themes (proposals interlinking themes are strongly encouraged):
- Enhancing productivity, resilience and sustainability of agricultural landscapes
- Increasing resilience of international supply chains
- Influencing food choice for health, sustainability and resilience at the individual and household level
Image: Gary Knight
Tim Benton, GFS Champion, said: “Resilience of the food system – from production to consumption – is an increasingly recognised challenge given competition for resources, climate change and increasing demand. However, we need better understanding of how to make the food system resilient. This new GFS programme will help provide that fundamental knowledge and translate this into policy and practice”
A community building event will be held in London on 20 July 2015, providing an opportunity to find out more about the programme, meet colleagues from other disciplines and initiate partnerships prior to the funding call in September.
For more information, please see BBSRC’s funding opportunity.