64 Operationalization of an SDG2 indicator: The Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), and the Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES)

Experience and Lessons to date from a Multi-Stakeholder Partnership

Organizers

  • Government of the United Kingdom (UK)
  • Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP)
  • Food and Agriculture Organization
  • ActionAid

Abstract

This side event will share the experience of the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), a funding mechanism that supports under-funded country-led efforts to end hunger and poverty, in its adoption of the Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES) as a project level indicator that measures food insecurity and monitors progress towards achieving SDG 2. The rich discussion will emphasize the role and importance of measurements in achieving the SDGs, and making a difference in food security and nutrition. The discussion will also focus on the potential for indicators to serve as an accountability and transparency mechanism; the opportunities and complexities in adapting a national level indicator to the project level; and the role of multiple stakeholders such as governments, civil society, the private sector, and academia, in successfully adopting indicators that monitor and track the Sustainable Development Goals, which also contribute to the CFS role in advancing Agenda 2030.

Key speakers/presenters

  • Terri Sarch, UK Ambassador, Permanent Representative to the Rome-based agencies (RBAs) – Welcome remarks and opening statement on behalf of the UK
  • Nichola Dyer, Program Manager, Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP) - Moderator
  • Natasha Hayward, Deputy Program Manager, Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP) - Panelist
  • Carlo Cafiero, Team leader for Food Security and Senior Statistician, Voices of the Hungry (VOH), FAO – Panelist
  • Tej Subedi, Member Secretary of the National Farmers’ Commission of Nepal – Panelist
  • Alberta Guerra, Senior Policy Analyst, ActionAid USA – Panelist
  • Pietro Gennari, Chief Statistician and Director of the Statistics Division, FAO – Closing Remarks

Summary

The event provided an opportunity to share the experience of different stakeholders in adopting the Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES) at different levels - country, program, and project, and highlighted the experience of the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), in its adoption of FIES as a project level indicator that measures food insecurity and monitors progress towards achieving SDG 2.

The rich discussion provided an overview of the Food Insecurity Experience Scale; its importance, usefulness and ways in which the FAO’s Voices of the Hungry team is supporting countries to deploy FIES in their national statistics. The conversation also teased out the importance of monitoring and evaluation to track progress and results, particularly in the realm of agriculture and food security, and discussed the relevance of a multi-stakeholder approach in translating commitment into concrete actions.

All speakers emphasized the role and usefulness of measurement and indicators in achieving food security and improved nutrition, and its importance to their respective roles and organizations. In addition to serving as a measurement tool to help track SDG 2 achievement, speakers also highlighted the role of FIES to serve as a tool to hold governments accountable to their citizens. Speakers also stressed the adaptability of FIES, and the myriad ways in which it can be used, not just as a national level indicator, but also at the program and project levels.

Key takeaway messages

  • It’s essential to put people at the center of FIES adoption
  • To increase the effectiveness of monitoring and evaluation tools, it is essential to take the local context into account, especially at the design stage  
  • Given numbers from the new SOFI report (38 million additional hungry people), it is essential that we all work together to track and monitor the achievement of SDG 2
  • The experience based approach of FIES enables us to talk about food insecurity in a broader way – taking into account all the nuances associated with food security  
  • It is important to build global momentum to tackle hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition – FIES provides us with a single tool to help monitor improvement in food security
Side Event - 64 - Operationalization of an SDG2 indicator: The Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), and the Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES)