Globalization of the Bioeconomy: Recent Trends and Drivers of Bioeconomy Programs and Policies

The bioeconomy approach to sustainable development holds great promise in reducing dependence on fossil fuels, addressing climate change, and promoting resource-use efficiency, thereby stimulating economic growth, enabling innovation, and improving food security. The bioeconomy is the production, utilization, conservation, and regeneration of biological resources, including related knowledge, science, technology, and innovation, to provide sustainable solutions (information, products, processes, and services) within and across all economic sectors and enable a transformation to a sustainable economy.

Multilateral organizations have intensified their engagement in, and for, the bioeconomy. Under India’s lead in 2023, the G20 drew attention to the bioeconomy and, in 2024, Brazil put the bioeconomy prominently on the G20 agenda. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) included bioeconomy in its most recent science strategy. At the same time, national bioeconomy strategies are emerging to shape multisectoral approaches to climate neutrality, food and nutrition security, improved health, economic growth, and other objectives aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals.

In April 2024, the International Advisory Council on Global Bioeconomy (IACGB) released a new policy review in preparation for the Global Bioeconomy Summit in October 2024. The new report analyzes bioeconomy policy trends and their determinants, and highlights the growing importance of the bioeconomy as a key enabler and solution provider to global sustainability challenges across various sectors and dimensions of society. Importantly, the report identifies international and multilateral cooperation as a key building block.

The report—and the growing body of research on the bioeconomy—emphasizes the opportunities to advance innovation and facilitate the rise of a bio-based industry and manufacturing, sustainable and regenerative agriculture, human health, and circular bio-based economies. This seminar will spotlight key findings from the IACBG report and explore the role of the bioeconomy in addressing food security, nutrition and diets, and poverty reduction in low- and middle-income countries. Please join us on May 7, 2024, at the International Food Policy Research Institute (in-person or online) for an exciting seminar on the globalization of the bioeconomy.

Welcome Remarks

  • Johan Swinnen, Director General, IFPRI; Managing Director, Systems Transformation, CGIAR

Keynote Speaker

  • Joachim von Braun, Distinguished Professor for Economic and Technological Change, Center for Development Research (ZEF), Bonn University

Panel Discussion

  • Julius Ecuru, Principal Scientist and Manager, Research Innovation Coordination Units, BioInnovate Africa Programme, International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology
  • Hugo Alexander Chavarría Miranda, Program Manager for Innovation and Bioeconomy, and Executive Secretary Latin American Bioeconomy Network, Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) (Video Remarks)
  • Mary E. Maxon, Executive Director, BioFutures
  • Ismahane Elouafi, Executive Managing Director, CGIAR (Video Remarks) 


  • David Spielman, Director, Innovation Policy, and Scaling (IPS), IFPRI