CGIAR’s new flagship report will help decision-makers transform food, land, and water systems

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As the world faces unprecedented environmental and social challenges, CGIAR—the global partnership of 15 agricultural research centers—is developing a new flagship report aimed at equipping decisionmakers with crucial tools to transform food, land, and water systems in a climate crisis. The initiative, supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through the CGIAR Trust Fund, marks a significant stride towards food system sustainability.

The report will be designed as a critical resource for global, regional, national, and local decision-makers. By synthesizing cutting-edge research and evidence from CGIAR and its partners, the report will provide actionable insights and data to help craft, develop, and negotiate policies that are both effective and grounded in scientific evidence.

Policymakers in – and focusing on – low- and middle-income countries are specifically targeted as they tackle the intertwined challenges of food security, climate change, equity, and sustainable development. The report aims to enhance the capacity of these leaders to implement strategies that address these issues comprehensively.

CGIAR’s Innovations

CGIAR is uniquely positioned to guide global efforts to overhaul food systems, with a 53-year record of pioneering innovations. These include the development of climate-resilient crop varieties, sustainable farming practices, and data analytics to improve agricultural outputs and environmental stewardship.

“We believe that investing in research and innovation is crucial for building a sustainable future,” said BMZ’s Felicitas Röhrig. “The time to step up is now, and we expect this will be more than just a series of reports – it will be a roadmap for creating resilient and sustainable food and environmental systems globally.”

Synthesis of Global Contributions

The flagship report will distill science from CGIAR’s vast network of researchers and over 3000 partners worldwide, focusing on five impact areas related to climate, environment, nutrition, gender, and livelihoods. These platforms coordinate and synthesize CGIAR’s research and ensure outputs are relevant, well-evidenced, and actionable.

“By bringing together the best of our research in a format accessible to decision-makers around the world, we aim for significant impact on how countries tackle the pressing issues of our time,” explained the CGIAR Executive Managing Director Ismahane Elouafi. “With science we can change the game.”

Strategic Collaborations and Advocacy

Scheduled for release within the next year, the first report will lay a general foundation for future editions, which may target specific themes or global processes such as the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) or the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). But the report release itself is only part of the plan.

“Our strategy prioritizes extensive partner collaboration, along with advocacy and communications efforts,” explains Lead Researcher Julianne Biddle. “These aspects are critical to making sure we set our sites on the right targets, and maximize the report’s influence on global food system reforms.”

A Global Call to Action 

As the world moves closer to crucial tipping points in environmental and agricultural sustainability, the necessity for informed and effective policies and investments has never been more urgent. CGIAR is setting the stage for major evidence-based interventions that promise to reshape our shared future.

CGIAR’s upcoming flagship reports represent not just a publication, but a call to action for global leaders to invest in and prioritize research and innovations that can sustainably transform food, land, and water systems. The backing by BMZ and the report’s partnership building efforts underscore the importance of collaboration in tackling these challenges. 

By harnessing CGIAR and partner science, the flagship report will ensure decision-makers globally can turn evidence into action.

Meet the CGIAR Flagship Report Lead Researcher:

We would like to thank all funders who support CGIAR research through their contributions to the CGIAR Trust Fund, and the special support for this project from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbei (GIZ). Main image: Jjumba Martin, ABI-CGIAR.

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