The Global Food Security Information Network (FSIN) Stakeholder Consultation

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The Global Food Security
Information Network (FSIN)
Stakeholder Consultation
5th of September to the 3rd of October 2012
Proceedings
Consultation hosted by the
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
Proceedings | 2
Table of contents
Invitation Note ......................................................................................................................... 4
Topics ........................................................................................................................................... 6
Topic 1 - Do you support the idea of a Food Security Information Network (FSIN)? What are
your expectations? .................................................................................................................................................. 6
Topic 2 - What are the information gaps and related capacity gaps?................................................ 7
Topic 3 How to make the FSIN work for you? ............................................................................................. 8
Contributions received ......................................................................................................... 9
Topic 1 ........................................................................................................................................................... 9
1) Tinashe Chavhunduka, University of Pretoria, South Africa, .......................................................... 9
2) Roy Stacy, USAID, United States / France ................................................................................................ 9
3) Elijah Mukhala, FAO, Sudan ........................................................................................................................... 9
4) Vedasto Rutachokozibwa, FAO, Tanzania ............................................................................................ 10
Comments by the facilitator ............................................................................................................................. 11
5) Duncan Samikwa, SADC, Botswana ......................................................................................................... 11
6) David Obong'o FAO, Kenya ......................................................................................................................... 12
7) Thida Chaw Hlaing, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, Myanmar..................................... 12
8) Caroline Kilembe, Government, United Republic of Tanzania ..................................................... 12
9) John Omiti, Kenya Institute of Public Policy Research, Kenya ..................................................... 13
10) Lutangu Mukuti, COMESA, Zambia ....................................................................................................... 13
Summary of Topic 1 by the facilitator ......................................................................................................... 13
11. Getachew Abate Mussa, FEWS-NET, Ethiopia ................................................................................... 14
Topic 2 ......................................................................................................................................................... 15
Comments by the facilitator............................................................................................................................. 15
12. Darith Srun, Council for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD), Cambodia ........... 15
13. Gary Eilerts. USAID, USA ............................................................................................................................ 16
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Comments by the facilitator ............................................................................................................................. 17
14. Koffi N. Amegbeto, FAORAF, Ghana ....................................................................................................... 17
15. Vedasto Rutachokozibwa, FAO, Tanzania ........................................................................................... 19
16. Getachew Abate Mussa, FEWS-NET, Ethiopia ................................................................................... 20
Summary of Topic 2 by the facilitator ........................................................................................................ 20
Topic 3 ......................................................................................................................................................... 22
Comments by the facilitator ............................................................................................................................. 22
17. Getachew Abate Mussa, FEWS-NET, Ethiopia ................................................................................... 23
18. Gilda Walter, FEWS NET, Guatemala .................................................................................................... 24
19. Nancy Mutunga, FEWS NET , Kenya ...................................................................................................... 24
Summary of Topic 3 by the facilitator ......................................................................................................... 25
Summary and conclusions ................................................................................................ 27
Overall summary and outcome of the FSIN Forum discussion ......................................................... 27
Summary of the three discussion Topics.................................................................................................... 28
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Invitation Note
Welcome to the global Food Security Information Network (FSIN) Stakeholder Consultation:
building a network and a community of practice that works for you!
This consultation is facilitated by the Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition (FSN Forum)
and we look forward to your active participation in this online discussion over the next 4 weeks.
The way the FSN Forum operates makes it very easy for you to express your opinion – and for
you to hear others state their interests.
The FSIN is a global community of practice to help strengthen national and regional information
systems and/or networks on food and nutrition security where they exist, or facilitate their
establishment where needed. Collaboration through FSIN is open to national, regional and
global institutions, development agencies, NGO’s, private sector, academics and individual food
security professionals interested in sharing knowledge and in investing in strengthened
capacity on food security and nutrition information systems.
The establishment of the Food Security Information Network (FSIN) was reviewed and
discussed last year by a wide variety of stakeholders during a consultative conference held in
Nairobi, Kenya. The stakeholders at this conference endorsed a Road Map for the establishment
of FSIN, and tasked an informal committee with representatives from FAO, IFPRI and WFP to
prepare the launch of FSIN. This committee has prepared a project document and raised some
start up funds. The launch of FSIN is scheduled for 10-12 October in Rome with the first meeting
of the Advisory Board and technical meetings. The results of this FSN Forum consultation will
feed into these meetings. On 16 October (World Food Day), FSIN will also be presented to a
wider audience at a side event of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) meetings to be
held from 15-20 October.
The overall objective of this consultation is to improve the design of FSIN and to guide its
implementation. FSIN is being set up to facilitate your work, so you have a clear stake in helping
us to shape a network that works for you!
Specific objectives of this consultation are:
-
To validate whether the overall thrust of the FSIN initiative fits the perceived
needs
To identify key gaps in food security and nutrition information, and related
capacity development
To identify how the FSIN can best communicate with its members
To join this consultation please go to www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin and fill out the (short)
registration form. You can then immediately login with your email address and your chosen
password and post your comments. For assistance please do not hesitate to contact the FSN
Forum Team at [email protected] The consultation page is also available in French and
Spanish and we welcome contributions in these languages.
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
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The consultation will run for 4 weeks from 3 to 30 September. Every week, a new topic will be
introduced, with specific questions on which we will ask your feedback – and which you can
debate among yourselves. The topic of the first week, from 3 to 9 September is presented below.
We are looking forward to receiving your inputs, and would like to thank you in advance for
your time and efforts!
Looking forward to your active participation!
Best regards,
Thijs Wissink, Facilitator
FSIN on-line forum discussion
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
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Topics
Topic 1 - Do you support the idea of a Food Security Information Network (FSIN)? What
are your expectations?
The consultative conference held in Nairobi, Kenya in September 2011 was attended by a wide
variety of stakeholders active in the field of information systems for food and nutrition security.
They included experts working for governments, regional organizations, international
organizations, NGO’s and donors. The conference endorsed the Road Map for the establishment
of FSIN that was presented.
With the FSIN, a community of practice in support of national and regional information systems
for food and nutrition security (ISFNS) is being established. It will also support national and
regional capacity development in ISFNS, to which a large proportion of the project resources
will be directed. Countries and regions will prioritize their demand to resolve the information
needs identified by a gap analysis. The rest of the resources will support the development of a
well-coordinated and dynamic FSIN. The FSIN will be supported by a Secretariat, an Advisory
Board, a Technical Working Group, and a group of global data institutions. Project resources will
also support the FSIN to hold regional and global seminars, and for communication and
advocacy functions.
On the FSIN consultation page you will be able to find the Brochure and Concept Note of FSIN,
with more detailed information on the proposed set-up of FSIN. These documents will also be
used for fund-raising, including for in-country and regional capacity development initiatives. So
far, the EC and USAID have committed approximately 1.5 million USD, which is still far short of
the amount of nearly 12.8 million USD that is being sought for the first three years of FSIN’s
operations. More than half of this amount is targeted at providing direct in-country support.
For the first week of this online stakeholder consultation, we would like you to respond in
particular to the following questions:




Do you support the overall thrust of the FSIN Initiative, and its priority areas of
work? Do you agree with the strong focus on capacity development?
Are you interested and ready to work together with other stakeholders to
improve coordination and cooperation between various information systems and
initiatives?
How can FSIN ensure a bottom up approach for building this global community
of practice?
What needs to be done to mobilize additional partners and resources? Which
public/private donors should be approached in particular?
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Topic 2 - What are the information gaps and related capacity gaps?
More specifically on this week’s discussion, we are looking for your feedback on what
the most important information gaps are, in addition to associated individual and
institutional capacity gaps.
As we would all agree, timely and reliable food and nutrition security information is
needed by decision-makers to formulate strategic development policies and programs,
and to take adequate and well targeted action in response to emergencies. Farmers,
traders and consumers need up-to-date market and price information to optimize their
trading and investment decisions. Different decision makers need different types of food
security information for various purposes. To ensure information is used as intended, it
must be analyzed, presented and communicated in a way to meet this objective. We also
realize that many people are both users as well as producers of information.
There are different types of information systems that are relevant to decision-making
for food and nutrition security. There are agricultural information systems, health
information systems, land, water and climate information systems, early warning
systems, household food security and nutrition information systems, market
information systems, vulnerability assessment and mapping systems and integrated
information systems. Click here <add hyperlink> to get a short explanation on the
different types of food security and nutrition information systems.
Most of the funding for food security information capacity development over the past
two decades has been directed toward international early warning systems for
humanitarian responses to emergencies. During the same period, investment in national
and regional early warning and response capacities, especially for national
preparedness and food crisis prevention, had diminished steadily, and in some cases
even disappeared. Besides, investments in information systems to address chronic
hunger and malnutrition has remained weak. This has led to a reduced capacity of
governments to implement strategic and well-targeted development interventions,
while failing to react in a timely and appropriate manner to emergencies.
This week, we would like you to respond in particular to the following questions:

As a user and/or producer of food security information, what do you think are
the main data/information gaps and why? What capacities have to be developed
to address those gaps? Please clearly separate between what is needed at
country level and what is needed at regional level.
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
How do you think FSIN can best respond to these needs? What resources are
needed to fill the gaps?
Topic 3 How to make the FSIN work for you?
Innovative multi-stakeholder food security information networks, such as the Technical
Secretariat for Food Security and Nutrition (SETSAN) in Mozambique, the Institutional capacity
development program on Food Security Information for Action in South Sudan (SIFSIA) and the
Kenya Food Security Steering Group (KFSSG), have demonstrated how community food security
information capacities can be mobilized and employed by governments to serve crisis
prevention, response and food security policy. The 2009 FAO-WFP joint thematic evaluation on
Information Systems for Food Security concluded that such multi-stakeholder networks are a
successful and lower cost approach to more sustainable food security information capacity and
institution building.
The community of practice that FSIN intends to construct will be built on national and regional
level networks and platforms. FSIN will support national and regional level networks where
they exist, or facilitate their establishment, where needed.
Through its website FSIN will bring together information from different global food and
nutrition security information systems and initiatives. It will also provide links to national and
regional level food and nutrition security information networks and platforms. Besides, the
website will be a venue for discussion on relevant issues and sharing of best practices. Regular
email newsletters will keep members informed of developments.
We would like you to respond in particular to the following questions:




Do you already belong to a food and nutrition security information network at
country/regional levels? Which one(s)?
How do you think FSIN can best support existing food and nutrition security information
networks at country and regional level?
Where they don’t exist yet, how can FSIN best facilitate the creation of national and
regional level networks?
How can the FSIN website, and other communication means, support national and
regional level networks? How should it coordinate with existing global initiatives?
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Contributions received
Topic 1
1) Tinashe Chavhunduka, University of Pretoria, South Africa,
Since the advent of globalisation all nations live in a global village now and it is imperative that
information be shared and help in world capacity development to feed the hungry. I therefore
think it is a noble idea to have such a network to help empower regions with information.
2) Roy Stacy, USAID, United States / France
I am very pleased to comment on this very welcome initiative. For too long at-risk countries have
relied on international sources of food security information, sources often poorly linked to local
problems or to national decision making processes. For almost two decades, donors have invested
in information systems for international agencies to build their capacities for humanitarian and
emergency response. A poor but perhaps necessary choice of priorities.
Over the same time period, very little was invested by donors, or the at-risk countries themselves,
to build local information capacities for more preferable outcomes, food crisis anticipation,
prevention and management.
The FSIN initiative aims to change this and to give much greater priority to country and regional
capacity building and the effective linking of those new capacities to local policy making. The
promise of greater sustainability is made through the encouragement of a community of practice,
food security information professionals inside governments as well as non-state actors outside, all
interfacing through local and region wide networks. It is a novel idea and worthy of support given
the emphasis on standards and professionalism. I am looking forward to seeing the comments of
others involved in the consultation.
3) Elijah Mukhala, FAO, Sudan
Dear colleagues,
The idea of a food security information network is very much welcome, in fact it’s long overdue
considering that institutions have been involved in food security information for many years.
Considering that there have been a few meetings and workshops already held on FSIN, I am
hoping the issues that I may bring up have been already discussed.
My expectations with regard to FSIN is that there will be a thrust towards standard methods of
data collection for food security analysis. I expect that FSIN will take the lead in capacity building
in food security analysis so that food security can be analysed in totality. We all know that the
conceptual framework of food security has four pillar, to what extent is the data we are collecting
within the 4 pillars to allow us to do a comprehensive food security analysis?
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We need to cover all the four pillars in the conceptual framework. With the standardization of
methodologies that I expect from FSIN, it will make data exchange across countries much easier as
data can be used cross boarders for food security. The right direction has already been started
with the Integrated Phase classification (IPC) where a single food security map is produced for the
entire IGAD region.
I expect that this may be a reality even in other RECs around Africa. I also expect that FSIN will
assist countries in establishing food security databases that can be shared with other countries or
indeed at Global level to undertake a global food security analysis.
I also expect that FSIN will take the lead in bringing together all the major players in food security
so that we are able to share datasets for food security, here i have in mind FAO, WFP, FEWSNet etc
4) Vedasto Rutachokozibwa, FAO, Tanzania
I strongly support the initiative on the food security information network. In order to attain the
goal for achieving adequate food (and nutrition) security for all, at all times as spelt out in the
1996 World Food Summit, decision makers need to be provided with timely, accurate and
consistent evidence-based information and recommendation for appropriate responses/
interventions. Decisions made to address food (and nutrition) security issues at the national (and
sub-national) level, have strong influence at both regional and international levels on many
accounts including the welfare of the populations. Therefore, there is need for providing
information that will meet the needs (demand driven) for a wide range of decision making.
Nevertheless, addressing the food (and nutrition) security needs require, many players through a
multi-sectoral approach but many information systems are fragment and uncoordinated.
Furthermore, with reduced global resources, there is need for information providers teaming-up
to make the best use of the resources available for producing consistent and standard
information; and I think that this network is a milestone for improving coordination and
cooperation among different information systems and initiatives.
As we build and strengthen the network, we should consider capacity development at all levels as
a catalyst and cornerstone. In order to walk the “right to food” talk as a basic human entitlement,
there is need for collective accountability including food governance among information
providers, and users and decisions makers. Information providers require their capacities
developed (training, facilities and other support) to enable them produce demand-driven and
evidence-based information using standard procedures or in the Integrated Phase classification
(IPC) language a “Common Currency”. Advocacy including sensitization and awareness creation
for decision makers (high level, in particular) will likely influence their political will and
commitment for positive responses, such as allocation of adequate resources for the management
of information systems and making policy changes such as trade restrictions. The public and the
private sector capacity development would inform them of their roles as key players in the food
and nutrition security arena. All these efforts will likely facilitate linking information to action.
To make this to happen, investments in strengthening harmonized national (and sub-national)
food (and nutrition) security information systems will be key as will likely increase local
commitment and ownership. The spillover of stronger national information systems will make
better regional and international coordination. However, most national and in particular, the food
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and nutrition insecure vulnerable countries do not have sufficient resource and at times, adequate
skills to establish and or invest in improving information systems. Therefore, this facility (food
security information network ) is anticipated to be the global focal point for resource
mobilization, setting standards for information management, as well as, promoting sustainable
capacity development.
My last contribution is that, taking into consideration the ongoing global movement for scaling-up
nutrition (SUN), which includes integrating agriculture, food security and nutrition and other
policy and changes, this initiative should aim staying above the curve by renaming current food
security information network (FSIN) to “food and nutrition security information network
(FNSIN)”.
Comments by the facilitator
Dear participants,
Our online stakeholder consultation on the global Food Security Information Network (FSIN)
starts off with four contributions coming from South Africa, USA, Sudan and Tanzania.
Of course we hope to receive many more contributions, so don’t hesitate to post your comments
on the first week’s topic: Do you support the idea of a Food Security Information Network (FSIN)?
What are your expectations? Participants working for governments, regional organizations and
other country and regional level organizations are particularly encouraged to react. FSIN is being
set up primarily for you, so we want to make sure it tailors your needs and expectations.
For the first week of this online stakeholder consultation, we would like you to respond in
particular to the following questions:
• Do you support the overall thrust of the FSIN Initiative, and its priority areas of work? Do you
agree with the strong focus on capacity development?
• Are you interested and ready to work together with other stakeholders to improve coordination
and cooperation between various information systems and initiatives?
• How can FSIN ensure a bottom up approach for building this global community of practice?
• What needs to be done to mobilize additional partners and resources? Which public/private
donors should be approached in particular?
Please read the full topic and related background material on the website, also available in French
and Spanish; contributions in any of these languages are welcome. On the website you will also be
able to find the Brochure and Concept Note of FSIN, with more detailed information on the
proposed set-up of FSIN.
Thijs Wissink, Facilitator
5) Duncan Samikwa, SADC, Botswana
I am pleased that we now have this forum to share our work and ideas. Thank you.
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6) David Obong'o FAO, Kenya
I very much support this great initiative as this would go a long way in improving household food
and nutrition security by providing the necessary information required to strengthen the
timeliness and efficiency of emergency and development initiatives. The increasing complexity of
emergency situations, and particularly in the Greater Horn of Africa, coupled with increased
attention to effective use of resources for interventions makes the use of information and data
necessary to ensure decision makers are well informed in planning appropriate responses.
Capacity development is crucial for the generation of accurate, timely and relevant data for food
security and nutriion information. This would also ensure that we all speak one coherent language
when making comparisons of results within and across countries/regions. Human and
technological capacities need constant development to ensure we keep abreast with the complex
and ever changing environment in which we live.
As a member of the regional Food Security and Nutrition Working Group (FSNWG) of the East and
Central African region, I must point out the crucial role stakeholders play in food security and
nutrition information systems. Different organizations bring on board key organizational
strengths and resources, creating synergies which augment coordination and information
systems.
To ensure a bottom up approach, I would suggest that extensive country-level stakeholder
consultations are done as a guarantee that all views are taken into consideration. As there is no
one-jacket-fits-all situation, contexual complexities must be considered in order to develop
efficient and affective food and nutrition security information systems.
7) Thida Chaw Hlaing, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, Myanmar
Great welcome to FSIN.
I have strong support and impression to FSIN that will bring all related issues of Global Food and
Nutrition Security with multi-sectoral approaches. My advice to overall thrust of the FSIN
Initiative is to be flexible as the way of approaches will differ based on the situation of the country.
Some country suits with “Bottom-Up” but some works with “Top-Down” approaches. The most
important thing is Coordination Mechanism should be strong enough to advice in the decisionmaking process, fill the gaps and support national and regional information systems for Food and
Nutrition Security. Second is building up education programme about “What is Food and Nutrition
Security and how important it is?” for Top-Down levels.
I wish all the BEST to FSIN to help the people to stop hunger in the world.
Thank you.
8) Caroline Kilembe, Government, United Republic of Tanzania
1.Do you support the overall thrust of the FSIN Initiative, and its priority areas of work? Do you
agree with the strong focus on capacity development?
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Yes I strongly support this initiative. Prioritizing the most vulnerable countries will enhance the
world to attain its objective of ensuring sustainable food and (nutrition) security to everyone.
Focus on capacity development will ensure a pool of expertise that in turn will have a wide but
focused scope of addressing food insecurity in their countries/regional and the world at large.
2. Are you interested and ready to work together with other stakeholders to improve
coordination and cooperation between various information systems and initiatives?
Yes
3. How can FSIN ensure a bottom up approach for building this global community of practice?
By ensuring that countries are having a standard format of reporting FSIN initiatives at country
level and thus countries will be learning from each other and improve information gaps that
they may be having.
9) John Omiti, Kenya Institute of Public Policy Research, Kenya
This is an excellent and opportune moment to have such a network. There are many lessons from
the 2008 and 2010 world food crises that we need to learn and draw lessons for various actors
interested in (i) assisting policy makers to make timely and orderly responses to evolving food
scarcities in different locations of the world depending on the circumstances (local and regional),
(ii) safeguard the vulnerable members of our societies to access quality food in difficult situations,
(iii) minimizing opportunistic behaviour by market intermediaries in times that portend crisis.
Will expect both big and small players (governments, traders, etc) to provide accurate and timely
information to make the net work functional and relevant.
Regards
10) Lutangu Mukuti, COMESA, Zambia
I am happy to note that this system will help us in the region to discuss the region’s food security
issues. This is a component which needs to be supported by all, as it involves each human being.
Regards
Summary of Topic 1 by the facilitator
Dear participants,
First of all I would like to thank all for your participation in this online stakeholder consultation,
especially those of you have posted comments. Your initial comments are very useful and below
you will find a short synthesis of what has been said so far.
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Among the interventions received there was wide support for the FSIN initiative and its overall
thrust. All participants welcomed the initiative and some mentioned it was high time or even
overdue (Omiti, Mukhala). FSIN is thought to be especially relevant given the increasing
complexity of emergency situations (Obong’o), increased attention to effective use of resources
(Obong’o, Rutachokozibwa), and the need to draw lessons from recent food price crises (Omiti).
Many interventions stressed the importance of decision makers and policy makers to base their
work on high quality information (Omiti, Obong'o, Rutachokozibwa). Advice on the main thrust of
FSIN included the need for FSIN to be flexible to tailor to different situations in the countries
(Obong’o, Hlaing), to have a multi-sectoral approach (Hlaing) and to change the name into ‘Food
and Nutrition Security Information Network (FNSIN)’(Rutachokozibwa).
Interventions generally supported the strong focus on capacity development under FSIN
(Kilembe, Obong’o, Rutachokozibwa, Mukhala, Stacy). Specific aspects of capacity development
that were mentioned included the need for a comprehensive approach addressing all four pillars
of food security (Mukhala), the effective linking of new capacities to local policy making (Stacy),
creation of a pool of expertise (Kilembe) and an education programme (Hlaing). It was also argued
that information providers need to develop their capacities to enable them to produce demanddriven information using standard procedures, which enables comparison of data within and
across countries/regions (Rutachokozibwa, Obong’o). In fact, standardization of methods for data
collection and analysis was stressed by some participants as another area where they expect FSIN
to play a key role (Mukhala, Rutachokozibwa). Mukhala also called for FSIN to play a role in
sharing of datasets from different agencies. In addition, Rutachokozibwa mentioned advocacy and
awareness raising among decision makers as means to increase their commitment to improve
information systems. In vulnerable countries where resources and skills are lacking FSIN should
play a role as a focal point for resource mobilization and promote sustainable capacity
development.
Participants seem to be motivated and ready to cooperate with other stakeholders. To ensure a
bottom up approach it was suggested that countries learn from each other (Kilembe) and
extensive country-level stakeholder consultations (Obong’o). Interventions stressed the
importance of national level networks/communities of practice to include a variety of
stakeholders (Omiti, Obong’o, Stacy). Obong’o adds that different organizations bring on board
key organizational strengths and resources, creating synergies. Stacy sees the encouragement of
communities of practice under FSIN as a promise of greater sustainability. Hlaing calls for
coordination mechanism to be strong enough to advice the decision-making process.
Thijs Wissink, Facilitator
11. Getachew Abate Mussa, FEWS-NET, Ethiopia
Dear Moderator,
Please find my comments on each Topic
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
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Topic1:
I fully support the FSIN initiatives as it is designed to improve the system for timely and
appropriate food security information for action in support of decision making process. Since the
quality of food security information depend on the level of technical as well as institutional
capacity, a strong focus on capacity development has to be the first priority of the initiative The
food security issue is multidisciplinary. It can not be done by one agency unless coordinated
system is in place at national level to bring together all sectoral issue pertinent to food security.
Therefore, I am always ready and interested to work with other stakeholders. In Ethiopia,
different agencies are working in different parts of the country on food security issues. The
majority participate in different sectoral task forces where food security information is shared
widely on ad hock base. However, the food security information network is not yet fully
integrated. Therefore, FSIN can promote to establish food security information network at sub
national levels (regional/Zonal/District) and linking with national food security coordination
system.
Topic 2
Comments by the facilitator
Dear colleagues,
We are now a good week into the FSIN online Consultation and have already received some very
valuable and supportive feedback on the FSIN Initiative and its overall thrust. Many of you have
registered to join the discussion page on line and we hope that many more will do so (it is easy!)
to help us define a network that best responds to your needs. In addition to the expectations you
may have of the FSIN as a global network of practitioners, this week we would like to hear from
you on what some of the most important information and capacity gaps are that you feel the FSIN
should address.
Looking forward to your comments!
Thijs Wissink, Facilitator
12. Darith Srun, Council for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD), Cambodia
On behalf of the Council for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD), I wish to express my
strong support to the Food Security Information Network (FSIN, and I am very pleased and
honoured to be in the network which is useful, I think, to better communicate the cross-cutting
issue of food security globally. In response to the current topic, I wish to provide small
contribution as follows.
There two main information gaps in Cambodia:
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1. weak communication between: (a)technical people and decision/policy makers and (b)
national and sub-national levels
2. limited coordination of the food security-related information systems/initiatives. To fill the
above mentioned gaps, the Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC)has taken several measures
including:
(1) Establishment of coordination mechanism (creation of Food Security Forum and Technical
Working Group on Food Security and Nutrition;
(2) Creation of a Food Security and Nutrition Information System (Website:
www.foodsecurity.gov.kh);
(3) Establishment of Food Security and Nutrition Information Management Task Force
consisting of representative from government institutions, development partner agencies
and NGOs. The Task Force aims at improving the coordination of various information
systems and initiatives related to food security and nutrition; and
(4) Creation of Food Security and Nutrition Data Analysis Team (FSN-DAT)
However, there is a need to strengthen the existing systems and structure, and develop the
capacity of the key actors in the systems, especially the capacity of the FSN-DAT needs to be
strengthened so that they can have better skills to analyze food security-related data and
information.
I would very much welcome any comments or questions.
Regards,
13. Gary Eilerts. USAID, USA
Governments, donors, and the food security assessment community rely heavily on indirect
measures of household food security to assess the presence and severity of food security
conditions at the household level. We all look at rainfall to determine drought, and we use drought
to estimate household crop production losses, and we use food prices to estimate the impacts of
drought-caused lost production on household food security. But in most of these measures, there
is no direct measurement of an actual household. As good as these indirect measures may be, it is
certain that they are far from perfect. In fact, we don't know how good they are.
The reason for this is clear, and forgivable: no one can afford the immense cost of implementing
direct measures of houshold food insecurity in all the places where it is needed. Household
surveys are expensive to carry out. And even in household surveys, the interpretation of
responses, and how they may be compared with other household surveys in other areas, in order
to target those who are hungriest, is far from certain.
So, my question is: are we forever consigned to monitor household hunger indirectly? As I look at
a new generation of short household surveys, new methods of communicating with households,
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Proceedings | 17
and a desire and an ability for multiple parties to work together efficiently, can't we find a way to
directly consider the presence of hunger in a community or even household?
Comments by the facilitator
Dear participants,
Discussions on our second topic What are the information gaps and related capacity gaps? starts
off with two contributions coming from Cambodia and USA. Thank you for these highly relevant
interventions!
We hope to receive many more contributions, so don’t hesitate to post your comments by logging
in on the FSIN consultation page. Alternatively, you can also just send back your reaction to
mailto:[email protected], and we will post it on your behalf. Participants working for
governments, regional organizations and other country and regional level organizations are
particularly encouraged to react. FSIN is being set up primarily for you, so we want to make sure it
is tailored to your needs and expectations.
For the second topic of this online stakeholder consultation, we would like you to respond in
particular to the following questions:
•
As a user and/or producer of food security information, what do you think are the main
data/information gaps and why? What capacities have to be developed to address those gaps?
Please clearly separate between what is needed at country level and what is needed at regional
level.
•
How do you think FSIN can best respond to these needs? What resources are needed to fill
the gaps?
However, reactions on our first topic are also still very welcome!
Looking forward to your comments!
Thijs Wissink, Facilitator
14. Koffi N. Amegbeto, FAORAF, Ghana
Dear Moderator,
Topic 2 - What are the information gaps and related capacity gaps?
This contribution is based on a recent evaluation in four West African countries but may be valid
in other countries in Africa.
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
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Information gap:



I concur with a previous contributor (Mr. Gary Eilerts) about reliance on indirect
measures of food insecurity.
Food security information where it is being collected is not systematically associated with
actions, for example, policy monitoring to document the lack of it or changes in
orientation. Yet, this joint monitoring facilitate documentation of best practices, lessons
learned which could be shared in similar situations, evaluated for possible replication
elsewhere or used for advocacy.
Food price data, where available is monthly averages and there is a need to verify if value
would be added to say, weekly or bi-weekly information. At the peak of food crises
decision makers need a high frequency information than monthly.
Capacities






Lack of institutional capacity in food security governance which is critical for an effective
management of information systems (and their networks) as a mean for appropriate and
timely decision making.
Need to strengthening capacities to sustain information collection, dissemination and use
at national and regional levels. In many cases, the national government seems to take the
back stage on these aspects and at times, it appears as if it is the financial and
development partners who need such information and therefore, are in the driving seat
with respect to generating /using such information.
Except few exceptions in Africa, national engagement in the effort is low and insufficient,
as a result, human capacities need to be improved (qualitatively and or quantitatively),
and financial resources to be levered for continuity and sustainability. Data quality cannot
be ascertained in some cases.
Needed capacity for decision makers to make the right balance between politics and
effective use FSI that would lead to timely response to any emerging food insecurity and
nutrition crises.
Poor or inadequate means of operation: internet connectivity /infrastructure, IT
equipment, and other required tools.
As the national systems have difficulties in sustaining their activities, their contributions
to regional networks is either nonexistent, weak or ineffective. Regional networks do not
have an efficient financial mechanism or capacity to sustain their activities and support
decision making at regional level, for example with the Regional Economic Communities.
Many thanks.
Regards,
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
Proceedings | 19
15. Vedasto Rutachokozibwa, FAO, Tanzania
My contribution to this topic is on gaps related to data capturing, data analysis and
communication of information on food and nutrition security.
Data capturing gaps: This constitutes a) weak data management processes in the collection,
keeping/storage and access at national and sub-national levels; b) lack of standardized tools and
instruments for collecting quantitative data (volume/weight), in particular but also in qualitative
data. In other instances, formalities to access data and information (the so called official data) are
too bureaucratic and cumbersome, making it difficult to access data timely. These circumstances
lead to incomplete datasets to support rigorous data capturing and analysis. Furthermore,
methodologies for capturing data and analysis for urban food and nutrition security situations are
not well developed and known by many analysts.
In addition, even for those captured data, there is often failure and/or delays to systematically
transfer them from source to higher levels; and associated with data aggregation at each higher
level (may be due to high transportation costs or other logistical problems), create gaps in data
availability for analysis at the time when required. Consequently, there is loss of useful details
required for a detailed geographic understanding. This may affect making appropriate
intervention decisions where needed. Improved technologies such GPS, PDAs SMSs as well as
training in their use, would improve data collection and reduce delays.
There is need for 1) developing standardized data collection tools and instruments for data
collection; 2) support countries, institutions to develop protocols for sharing data and
information; and 3) provide additional technical and financial support to facilitate the collection
and transfer of data from sources for analysis.
Data Analysis gaps: In some instances, data are collected and reported raw with no analytical
value addition to support decision making for planning and development. In addition, there is
tendency for using a narrow analytical framework focusing on, for example, a few indicators such
as food availability, and even so, focusing on key staples and ignoring significant other source such
as indigenous foods and minor crops, livestock and fisheries products, issues of food access
(including income sources, consumer price indices, and purchasing power), utilization-nutrition
(key actions or intervention on nutrition), and stability (livelihood systems). Furthermore,
addressing vulnerability to food insecurity and malnutrition requires an integrated multi-sectoral
approach, which most analysts do not often consider; or sometimes they are forced to ignore it in
order to service their institutional mandates, demand and/ or results. There is need for
strengthening multi-sectoral institutional analysis capacities in terms of skill development and
provision of analytical tools such as those from the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification
(IPC).
Information communication gaps: The purpose of generating food and nutrition security reports
is for meeting the needs of decision makers to respond appropriately. Often, reports generated
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[email protected]
Proceedings | 20
provide exceedingly detailed descriptions and normative/academic related information and fail to
provide relevant conclusions to inform decision making. There is need for developing
communication and presentation skills to facilitate production of audience-tailor information.
Overall, there is need for establishing standard guidelines and protocols to collect, process,
analyze, interpret, write and communicate demand-driven food and nutrition security
information/reports.
16. Getachew Abate Mussa, FEWS-NET, Ethiopia
Dear Moderator,
Please find my comments on each Topic
Topic2:
In the case of Ethiopia, different agencies are collecting different food security information as per
the agencies interest. The main sources of information are those government office at district level
. The data collection and management issues at district level is challenging. lack of skilled
manpower, lack of equipments, and poor communication system affect the timeliness,
consistency, relevance of the information provided. More over lack of data backup system at
different administrative level, it is not easy to do time series food security data analysis.
Therefore, to address these problems, I would like to suggest the following specific activities to Intensive training on food security data collection and management for all level - improve
accountability and institution capacity of the Government Offices of different administrative level
to have a sustainable food security information network - improved information communication
systems of all level for timely information exchange - develop sector specif standards and
methodologies to be used as the integral part of national/local food security analysis. The current
national level methodology being used in Ethiopia is more food aid focused.
Summary of Topic 2 by the facilitator
Dear participants,
I would like to thank you all again for your participation in this online stakeholder consultation,
especially those of you who have posted comments.
Your comments were again very useful and provided some interesting insights. Below you will
find a short synthesis of the contributions received on this
topic 2 - What are the information gaps and related capacity gaps?
A number of information gaps and related capacity development needs were identified. They have
been grouped under a few headings, although many of the issues raised go beyond the headings
under which they are classified.
Data collection, storage and access
Rutachokozibwa mentioned gaps in the collection, storage and access to data. Once data are
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
Proceedings | 21
collected there are often failures and/or delays to transfer these from the source to higher levels
of aggregation. This results in gaps in data availability and loss of detail, which in turn hampers
analysis, and subsequently doesn’t allow for targeted decision making. He calls for the
development of standardized tools and instruments for data collection, and technical and financial
support to facilitate collection and transfer of data. He believes that technologies such as GPS,
PDAs and SMSs, and training in their use could improve data collection and reduce delays. He also
notes that sometimes formalities to access data are too bureaucratic, making it difficult to access
data in time. He calls to support countries and institutions to develop protocols for sharing data
and information. Amegbeto, reporting on 4 West African countries, notes that at the peak of food
crises, decision makers need frequent food price information. Currently, food price data, where
available are monthly averages, so collection of weekly or bi-weekly food price data should be
considered. He also reports that data quality cannot be ascertained in some cases, and calls for
strengthening capacities for data collection. Eilerts notes that governments, donors and the food
security assessment community rely mostly on indirect measures of household food security,
which are far from perfect. He suggests using the new generation of short household surveys, new
methods of communicating with households, and increase cooperation between different parties
to directly measure food insecurity in a community or household.
Analysis
Darith puts special emphasis on the need to strengthen skills to analyze food security related data
and information within Cambodia’s Food Security and Nutrition Data Analysis Team.
Rutachokozibwa notes that in some cases raw data are reported, without analysis in support of
decision making for planning and development. There is also a tendency to use narrow analytical
frameworks, for instance using only a few indicators on food availability, and ignoring food access,
food utilization/nutrition and stability. In addition, analysts often don’t practice an integrated
multi-sectoral approach, which is needed to analyze vulnerability to food and nutrition insecurity.
Therefore strengthening of multi-sectoral institutional analysis capacities is needed, and
analytical tools need to be provided. He also notes that methodologies for data collection and
analysis for urban settings are not well developed, and analysts lack knowledge on this.
Communication, coordination and decision making
Rutachokozibwa says that food and nutrition security reports should respond to the needs of
decision makers. However, reports provide too detailed descriptions and fail to provide
conclusions that inform decision making. Therefore communication and presentation skills need
to be developed to facilitate the production of information products that are tailored to their
audience. Darith reports weak communication between decision makers and technical people, and
also between the national level and sub-national levels. He also notes limited coordination
between the different food security related information systems and initiatives. He lists a number
of actions the Cambodian government has undertaken to fill these gaps, including the
establishment of coordination mechanisms to facilitate coordination between government
institutions, development agencies and NGO’s. Amegbeto argues that food security information is
not systematically associated with actions. For instance policy monitoring could facilitate
documentation of best practices, which in turn can be used for replication and advocacy of
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Proceedings | 22
successful actions. He also reports a lack of institutional capacity in food security governance,
which is crucial for effective management of information systems. Besides, in order to find the
right balance between politics and the effective use of food security information, with timely
responses to emerging food insecurity and nutrition crises, the capacities of decision makers need
to be strengthened. Eilerts seeks to harness the desire and ability for multiple parties to work
together efficiently, to improve food security information.
General issues
Amegbeto notes that often it looks like financial and development agencies are in the driving seat
with respect to generating/using food and nutrition security information to satisfy their own
information needs, and national governments take a back seat. In Africa, except for few
exceptions, national engagement is low and insufficient. Therefore human capacities need to be
developed, and funding needs to be levered that ensures sustainability. He also says that as
national systems struggle to sustain their own activities, their contributions to regional networks
remains weak. In addition, regional networks lack finances and capacities to sustain their
activities, and support decision making at the regional level. Finally, he notes weak means of
operation (internet, IT equipment and others). Darith notes there is a need to further strengthen
the existing systems and structure in Cambodia, and to develop the capacities of the key actors.
Rutachokozibwa states that overall, there is a need for establishing standard guidelines and
protocols to collect, process, analyze, interpret, write and communicate demand-driven food and
nutrition security information/reports.
Thijs Wissink, Facilitator
Topic 3
Comments by the facilitator
Dear colleagues,
Herewith I would like to introduce the third topic of the FSIN online stakeholder consultation:
How to make the FSIN work for you?
The launch of this new Food Security Information Network is scheduled for the 11th October in
Rome and the results of this online consultation will feed into the meeting.
Don’t hesitate to post your comments by logging in on the website, or by sending an email to [email protected] by Wednesday, 3rd October 2012.
FSIN is being set up to facilitate your work, so please help us tailoring it to your needs and
expectations.
Looking forward to your comments!
Thijs Wissink, Facilitator
Innovative multi-stakeholder food security information networks, such as the Technical
Secretariat for Food Security and Nutrition (SETSAN) in Mozambique, the Institutional capacity
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
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development program on Food Security Information for Action in South Sudan (SIFSIA) and the
Kenya Food Security Steering Group (KFSSG), have demonstrated how community food security
information capacities can be mobilized and employed by governments to serve crisis prevention,
response and food security policy. The 2009 FAO-WFP joint thematic evaluation on Information
Systems for Food Security concluded that such multi-stakeholder networks are a successful and
lower cost approach to more sustainable food security information capacity and institution
building.
The community of practice that FSIN intends to construct will be built on national and regional
level networks and platforms. FSIN will support national and regional level networks where they
exist, or facilitate their establishment, where needed.
Through its website FSIN will bring together information from different global food and nutrition
security information systems and initiatives. It will also provide links to national and regional
level food and nutrition security information networks and platforms. Besides, the website will be
a venue for discussion on relevant issues and sharing of best practices. Regular email newsletters
will keep members informed of developments.
We would like you to respond in particular to the following questions:





Do you already belong to a food and nutrition security information network at
country/regional levels? Which one(s)?
How do you think FSIN can best support existing food and nutrition security information
networks at country and regional level?
Where they don’t exist yet, how can FSIN best facilitate the creation of national and
regional level networks?
How can the FSIN website, and other communication means, support national and
regional level networks?
How should it coordinate with existing global initiatives?
17. Getachew Abate Mussa, FEWS-NET, Ethiopia
Dear Moderator,
Please find my comments on each Topic
Topic3:
I am participating at national level task forces including Disaster Risk Management Technical
Working Group (DRMTWG), Disaster Risk Management Agriculture Task Force (DRM-ATF), and
Multi-Agency Nutrition Task Force (MANTF)are some to mentioned Since Sectoral Task Forces
are active in Ethiopia which are dealing with issues specific to their sector, it would be good if
FSIN design a strategy to help each task forces in the country to link the sectoral issues with food
security in general The lesson I learn from East Africa Emergency Coordination in 2010, the web
based information network is so important to inform division makers timely. Likewise it would be
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
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good if FSIN support to establish or strengthen the existing country level Food and Nutrition
Information and communication systems
18. Gilda Walter, FEWS NET, Guatemala
1. Do you already belong to a food and nutrition security information network at country/regional
levels? Which one(s)?
Yes, as FEWS NET, I belong to a technical committee in Guatemala, chaired by the National Food
Security and Nutrition Secretariat (SESAN), to compile data related to food security, analyze it and
make a 3-month projection on future food security conditions. In this committee participate
government institutions as well as international organizations and NGOs.
2. How do you think FSIN can best support existing food and nutrition security information networks
at country and regional level?
By facilitating the exchange of data collection methods and methodologies for analysis,or the
experiences of others, so that the existing networks can learn from other initiatives.
3. Where they don’t exist yet, how can FSIN best facilitate the creation of national and regional level
networks?
By providing ideas on how to create and manage them according to others' experiences. By
enabling direct communication with the members of existing networks and those who are
interested in create one. The knowledge and guide of those who have walk the path could be very
welcome and useful. Also, the diversity of circumstances, since each experience will be different,
could be very enlightening.
4. How can the FSIN website, and other communication means, support national and regional level
networks? How should it coordinate with existing global initiatives?
Enabling interactive exchange of information within the members, through chat rooms, direct email communication, blogs and other types of communal communication. * Publishing documents
of standards, methods and tools for food and nutrition security information gathering, analysis
and decision-making. * Providing access to new research related to food and nutrition security
and its results.
19. Nancy Mutunga, FEWS NET , Kenya
Do you already belong to a food and nutrition security information network at country/regional
levels? Which one(s)?
Yes. The Eastern Africa Food Security and Nutrition Working Group (FSNWG). How do you think
FSIN can best support existing food and nutrition security information networks at country and
regional level? The FSIN is well positioned to support country and regional networks by virtue of
its global experience with multiple food security networks. In this regard, the FSIN can support
country and regional networks by developing practices or guidelines (especially for food security
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[email protected]
Proceedings | 25
networks in their formative stages) that are more likely to enhance the efficiency and stability of
food security networks. In this case, missteps that have characterized other networks can be
minimized. Most country and regional food security networks are generally ‘inward looking’ and
in many instances oblivious to occurrence of global food security phenomenon that often impact
other countries or regions. The FSIN can facilitate provision of ‘early warning’ information to food
security networks on external events that may not appear significant at the time but could end up
being key food security drivers in unexpected areas. The FSIN has correctly observed that while
information systems are, in general, fairly efficient in articulating the nature, extent and
magnitude of a food security crisis, there is a deficit of timely decision making for early response.
The FSIN could, from its experience with different networks, provide input to country or regional
networks regarding the characteristics of response analysis strategies (or frameworks) that have
greater likelihood of eliciting interest and response from governments, donors and development
partners.
Where they don’t exist yet, how can FSIN best facilitate the creation of national and regional level
networks?
From experience, the timing for the creation of national networks is rather important.
Governments are usually more receptive to forming and participating in transparent multisectoral and multi-organizational food security networks in the face of a crisis that is bigger than
the capacity of national governments to mitigate. This does not suggest that FSIN waits until a
crisis is imminent. However, the FSIN’s entry point can focus on identification of key food security
players, initially senior food security technicians in key government ministries, FAO, WFP, FEWS
NET and NGO representatives etc... The goal would be to facilitate an initial brainstorming session.
Most potential network partners also benefit greatly from familiarization or exchange visits to
functional networks in countries that have similar governance structures or food security
characteristics. The FSIN can facilitate such exchanges with networks that most closely resemble
the FSIN vision.
Summary of Topic 3 by the facilitator
Dear Participants,
Our online stakeholder consultation is now closed. I would like to thank you all very much for
taking part in this important exercise, especially those of you who posted comments. The results
of this consultation will feed into the FSIN launch meetings that will take place next week, on 1112 October. In this way, you have contributed to shaping the FSIN and setting up a network that
works for you!
The email distribution list (listserv) that we have used for this consultation, we will continue to
use to interact with you as FSIN is being rolled out. Below you will find a summary of the
contributions that we have received on our last topic: ‘How to make the FSIN work for you?’. The
full summary of the whole online consultation will be circulated through this list during next
week.
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
Proceedings | 26
All three contributors confirmed being part of some kind of food and nutrition security
information network. Nancy Mutunga is part of the Eastern Africa Food Security and Nutrition
Working Group (FSNWG), Gilda Walter belongs to a technical committee in Guatemala, chaired by
the National Food Security and Nutrition Secretariat (SESAN), and Getachew Abate Mussa
participates in different national level task forces in Ethiopia.
All three interventions refer in some way to the importance of using lessons learnt in some
countries, to support food and nutrition security networks in other countries. Mutunga believes
that FSIN will be well positioned to support country and regional networks through its global
experience with multiple networks. In this way, missteps made by certain networks, can be
minimized for other networks. Some more concrete suggestions of how FSIN could support
existing networks mentioned are:





Developing practices or guidelines (especially for food security networks in their
formative stages) that are more likely to enhance the efficiency and stability of food
security networks (Mutunga) and facilitating the exchange of data collection methods and
methodologies for analysis, or the experiences of others (Walter).
Facilitating the provision of early warning information to food security networks on
external events. (Mutunga)
Providing input on the characteristics of response analysis strategies (or frameworks) that
have greater likelihood of eliciting interest and response from governments, donors and
development partners. (Mutunga)
Designing a strategy to help different task forces to link the sectoral issues with food
security in general. (Mussa)
Supporting establishment or strengthening of existing country level Food and Nutrition
Information and communication systems (Mussa)
On the question of how FSIN can best facilitate the creation of national and regional networks
where they don’t exist yet, participants again stressed the importance of learning from the
experiences of others. Mutunga suggests that FSIN could start by identifying the key food security
players in a country, facilitate an initial brainstorming session, and organizing exchange visits to
functional networks in countries that have similar governance structures or food security
characteristics. Walter suggests that FSIN could help by providing ideas on how to create and
manage networks according to others’ experiences. This could be done by facilitating direct
communication between members of existing networks and those who are interested to create
one.
On the question how the FSIN website and other means of communication can best support
national and regional level food and nutrition security network, Walter suggests the following
points:

Enabling interactive exchange of information within the members, through chat rooms,
direct e-mail communication, blogs and other types of communal communication.
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
Proceedings | 27


Publishing documents of standards, methods and tools for food and nutrition security
information gathering, analysis and decision-making.
Providing access to new research related to food and nutrition security and its results.
Thanking you and with best regards,
Thijs Wissink – Facilitator
Summary and conclusions
Overall summary and outcome of the FSIN Forum discussion
On the whole, the FSIN Forum discussion yielded good feedback, although the number
of responses received was very limited (only 17 contributions across the three topics
out of a total of 340 invited participants). Nevertheless, the summary notes (below)
provide some very interesting inputs for shaping the FSIN as it is being rolled out. In
that sense, it can be concluded that the objectives of the consultation were met.
All of the participants received updates through a listserv that was created; only few of
them decided to submit comments. The list of participants at the on-line consultation
included the participants to Brussels symposium of September 2010 and the
consultative conference in September 2011, where the idea for a FSIN was first
conceived and a road map for its establishment was endorsed.
Furthermore, field staff working on food and nutrition security information of the three
organizations supporting the establishment of FSIN (FAO, IFPRI and WFP) were invited,
in addition to known experts from respective countries or regions (working for a
national or regional level organizations, such as a government ministry or agency, a
local NGO, a local university or a regional organization). Although some field staff of the
3 lead organizations submitted names of valuable experts, the general response was
rather low. It is difficult to understand why not more people on the listserv contributed
to the consultation, but it is important to draw lessons for FSIN’s future communication
with its members. Some possible explanations for the apparent low response rate may
have been related to the following:
-
-
The timing of the consultation at the end of the summer period (people may not
have had sufficient time, as they were busy with picking up on their activities
following the holiday period)
People did not see the urgency of responding – either because they already knew
about the FSIN or they may not have felt sufficient ownership (yet) in the FSIN
and its objectives.
It would important to raise the review why people didn’t engage more and how
communication can be improved, during the FSIN launch meeting on 11-12 October.
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A useful outcome of the consultation is that FSIN now has a listserv with around 340
experts, which it can use as the basis of its network/community of practice. While the
majority of these people did not participate actively in the online stakeholder
consultation, they have been thoroughly informed of the FSIN initiative and its
objectives.
Summary of the three discussion Topics
Topic 1 - Do you support the idea of a Food Security Information Network (FSIN)?
What are your expectations?
-
-
There is wide support for the FSIN initiative and its overall thrust. All participants
welcomed the initiative.
The strong focus on capacity development under FSIN is acknowledged as key to
meeting FSIN’s objectives.. Standardization of methods for data collection and
analysis was stressed by some participants as another area where they expect
FSIN to play a key role. Advocacy and awareness raising were also mentioned as
important roles of FSIN.
Participants seem to be motivated and ready to cooperate with other stakeholders.
To ensure a bottom up approach it was suggested that countries learn from each
other.
Topic 2 - What are the information gaps and related capacity gaps?
-
-
-
There are important gaps in data collection, storage and access. Strengthening
capacities for data collection and transfer, development of standardized tools and
instruments for data collection, development of protocols for data sharing and
enhanced cooperation between different information gathering actors were
suggested as ways to remedy these gaps.
There are important gaps in data analysis. Strengthening of analysis skills, in
particular multi-sectoral institutional analysis capacities, and provision of
analytical tools were suggested to address these gaps.
There are important gaps in communication, coordination and decision making.
Development of communication and presentation skills and strengthening of the
capacities of decision makers were suggested.
General issues mentioned included lack of government ownership, weak means of
operation (internet, IT equipment and others), and lack of finances and capacities
at regional networks to sustain their activities, and support decision making at the
regional level.
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
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Topic 3 - How to make the FSIN work for you?
-
-
-
Participants stressed the importance of using lessons learnt in some countries, to
support existing food and nutrition security networks. In addition, a number of
concrete suggestions were made on how FSIN could support existing networks
Learning from the experiences of others is also important for facilitating the
creation of national and regional networks where they don’t exist yet. To that
end it was suggested to facilitate direct communication between members of
existing networks and those who are interested to create one.
Suggestions on how FSIN could use its future website and other means of
communication to support national and regional level food and nutrition security
network included interactive exchange of information between members,
providing relevant documents of standards, methods and tools, and providing
access to relevant new research.
http://www.fao.org/fsnforum/fsin/
[email protected]
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