Knowledge for a sustainable world

Delia Grace Randolph, Joshua Muhumuza

NRI is delighted to congratulate Prof. Delia Grace who has been appointed to the High-Level Panel of experts on Food Security and Nutrition (HLPE-FSN) of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS). The HLPE is the United Nations body for assessing the science related to world food security and nutrition. It is the science-policy interface of the CFS and provides independent, comprehensive and evidence-based analysis and advice at the request of CFS.

GraceDelia4Delia will be part of the team drafting the CFS HLPE-FSN report on “Strengthening urban and peri-urban food systems to achieve food security and nutrition in the context of urbanization and rural transformation”. Findings from the report will be presented to the CFS in October 2024 to help inform policy and decision-making at national, regional and global levels, and contribute to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The drafting team was selected by the HLPE-FSN Steering Committee following a rigorous selection procedure. Among other criteria, the committee considered general principles of scientific and technical relevance, and regional expertise in assembling a multidisciplinary team of experts. Delia, a Professor of Food Safety Systems at the NRI, joins nine other world-renowned experts who will bring their collective expertise to address the multidimensional and intersectional aspects of this highly influential topic.

“More people now live in cities than the countryside and urbanisation is changing the food system in directions that can jeopardise the health of people, animals, and the environment. I have researched the informal food systems which largely feed the urban poor for twenty years and am very happy to have the opportunity to contribute to this important report—the second HLPE report I have had the privilege of co-authoring”.  

Delia is an epidemiologist and veterinarian with over 25 years’ experience in developing countries. She is a professor at NRI and a Joint Appointed Scientist at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), Nairobi, Kenya. Her primary research focus is food safety in informal markets in low- and middle-income countries. Research interests include emerging diseases, participatory epidemiology, gender and animal welfare. Over her distinguished career, Delia has worked with the World Organisation for Animal Health, the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organisation, the World Bank and other international, regional and national organisations.

The selected international experts bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the project, covering a broad spectrum of disciplines. These include health and nutrition, rural and urban sociology, urban and peri-urban food security, political economy, sustainable urban development, indigenous knowledge, economics, statistical analysis, legal aspects and human rights, and gender analysis.

To compile the report, Delia and the team will consider all contributions received during a consultative process and draw on both local and global knowledge and experience to evaluate the science related to urban and peri-urban systems. Their combined expertise will ensure that the report provides a comprehensive and nuanced analysis of the complex issues at the nexus of food security, nutrition, and urbanization.