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4.How would an effective institutional landscape for the collection and utilization of FSI for food access and nutrition look?

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4.How would an effective institutional landscape for the collection and utilization of FSI for food access and nutrition look?

What mechanisms are needed to harmonizing data collection among different actors, especially district- and regional-level government ministries, and ensure coherence between relevant sectoral policies and national food and nutrition policies?  How can a strong monitoring and evaluation system and coordination be supported?  

Such a landscape should

Such a landscape should consist of a wide range of stakeholders working in FSN. This should include key ministries or government departments that have a role in FSN. Its existence should be continous, with well defined goals and agreed indicators that tie with sub-national, national and regional development agendas. It should have a space to publish collected data to ensure wide usage

Institutional landscape

From your perspective, who should oversee this shared space in terms of data?  

A possiblilty is to host a

A possiblilty is to host a team of researchers in a key ministy dealing with FSN, or the national statistical bureau. Such a team could oversee this space and also engage in analysis. This should form a significant proportion of the team's mandate so that this activity is not neglected at the expense of other responsibilities

Demba's picture
Anything dealing with gov mandate has to be seriously vetted

I believe present day' private sector is very much mature and needs recognition, just not support... Any government mandate in delivery of Ag data for development should include Private Sector parties and make major disclosures in mandatory delivery with reasonable time frames... Host needs to be diverse and reflective of various stakeholders in a given context to mean "business"!

Mohamed Ag Bendech

I agree. The knowledge sharing plaforms publishing the information in centralized websites could be a good model. FAO and NEPAD partnered in supporting SADC to develop a knowledge sharing platform for food security and nutrition. The establishment of the structure of these kind platforms takes time and needs coordinate efforts. African Union Commission is also putting in place a Center for Excellence or best pratices with support of FAO and ACBF. there is the need to coordinate all the efforts related to the knowledge sharing platforms in SSA by REC.

  • ​Data accuracy is a big challenge in many African countries. This could be related to indeaquate capacity at central and decentralised levels to collect and manage data. Also the type and source of data formal or informal. The definition of the two terms is confusing, leading to one sector being favoured than the other (formal vs informal).
  • Data repository is still  government responsibility.It it is high time that the private and commercial sector are involved in data collection and management. However, there is need for coordination.
S. Gustafson
Informal vs Formal data

Can you talk a little more about informal vs. formal data? What types of data fall into each category, and why is it important to utilize both? How can both types best be captured and managed?

Demba's picture
You won't catch fish same way you're hunting for a rabbit...

Selective and differentiated approaches need to interplay here since the "target" is as different as heterogenous within. Scientific and formally generated data is not of the most concerning here, despite needs to iterate profile and relevance. Empirical, indigenous knowldege processing has been an issue as far as to such demographics... Being likely the end users of most development assistance schemes, here you have a constituency that does not have features of formal apparatuses most of us here are used to dealing with... And remember, it's not about what we think they want, it gotta be where we found out they stand. Approach is everything, and it takes another stance to under-stand and decipher such constituents' premises on farming, climate change and even "progress", "growth"...

In all the above instances it becomes a must to utilize multicultural approaches to needs identification and inherent data collection  to better grasp the underpinning validity of such data.

Multisectoral approach

For food security and nutritition, stakeholders must be together (work together and linked by common vision an goals) when it comes to defining policies, strategies...This will make the M&E easier...


Given the various mandates and limited funding, how can this coordination be supported?  Do you recommend an external body that oversees coordination or what should the structure be to facilitate coordination?  Can you recommend specific examples of how this has worked (or not) in Senegal among various agencies?

Harness local potential

Each country has established research institutions conducting food secuirty and nutrition research. I would strongly suggest harnessing this potential and capacity.

support for local potential

I agree it is important to support these institutions consistently and over the long term so capacity and information collection and dissemination can continuously increase.  There is a need for collaboration space but this may only happen with sufficient funding and structures in place to support this collaboration among institutions and between them and government agencies.

Demba's picture
Unfortunately looks like none is listening...

Political correctness in some way, here blindness might do well to describe the situation... The lost decades of development (sixties and the seventies...) should be the precedent to remain the guiding principle in project formulation, planning and delivery...

Communication for developpment has been missing until it became clearer that stakeholders engagement is not just a number issue, but substance as well... to date recent success stories all stemmed from better community ownership and outreach, Grameen Bank in Bengladesh or actual WAAPP achievements in Senegal or even in Mali have all featured similar advances that need to only being replicated in the design and adapted to other local conditions to make the difference in millions... Believe it, it's lack of institutional will!

Multisecoral approach

The coordination must be a priority for the government, allowing a high level National Institution to play its role. It is recommended to have a high level anchorage (Prime Minister Office, Ministry of finance or planning). The funding for the coordination (example for nutrition in Senegal) comes from the national budget in which there is a line dedicated to nutrition. The national body has the ability to convene other stakeholders around the nutrition agenda where you find various challenges. One key point will then be the technical capacities from the national body to coordinate, faclitate, catalyze. The national body must identify and master key processes for coordination: analysing, setting policies and strategies, monitoring and evaluating.

Demba's picture
How about privatizing the role?

Huge duties might be placed on gov when it's really about private sector engagement... I do believe the way a contract works, governments should possibly allow the framewhork and with clearly defined goals in each instances, bring privae sector to crowding in...

Demba's picture
Multi Actor Platforms work better

Indeed Multi-Actor approach can leverage various stakeholder's needs and deliverables for a better outcome. So far recent challenges have consisted  in featuring such a pool with various limitations without addressing logistical and capacity building components of the least equipped to join in. Institutional Landscape must draw from empirical and scientific feeds to be relevant at all times. Ongoing GODAN (Global Open Data Agr. & Nutrition) is an experiment worth looking at as far the profile of mechanism and data collection structure one is looking at...

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