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Towards 2015

1. In the year 2015 FAO will celebrate its 70th birthday. What will it be doing then? What should it be doing between now and then? At the turn of the century, and the millenium, FAO's Members have decided to address these questions through the development of a Strategic Framework to guide the Organization's work over the coming 15 years.

2. The question of where FAO should be going and what it should be doing by 2015 is inextricably linked to the question of what kind of world it will be part of. In anticipating what the future will hold, the only real certainty is uncertainty. Demographic and economic projections only indicate the likely scenario based on current trends.

3. According to the latest population projections of the United Nations, the world's population is expected to grow on average by about 75 million per year until 2015, when it is foreseen to reach 7.2 billion. Populations living in what is today the developing world will account for over 90 percent of the increase. In 2015 it is estimated that Africa's population will be 55 percent above its 1995 level, while that of the other developing regions combined will be close to one-third above.

4. Economic growth in the medium term (to 2005) is expected to be more sustained in the developing world as a whole than in the developed countries, though with considerable differences between countries. However, change in the global balance of wealth among nations is likely to be slow; at present 78 percent of world GDP is accounted for the high-income countries which have 15 percent of the world's population, while only 2.5 percent comes from the low-income economies (excluding China) which have 35 percent of the world's population. Moreover, as recent events leading to regional/global financial instability in 1997/98 have demonstrated, there is a risk of economic recessions with consequent adverse effects on employment, agriculture and food security.

5. Hunger is expected to persist, though at slightly attentuated levels. The number of chronically undernourished people in developing countries is now estimated at 828 million for the 1994-96 period. The region with the largest absolute numbers of undernourished (512 million) is Asia, while the region with the largest proportion of the population that is undernourished (39 percent) is Africa. Unless major efforts are made to improve food supplies and to overcome inequities, in 2015 the incidence of undernutrition in some countries may still be as high as 30 percent of the population.

6. A growing number of the chronically undernourished are likely to be among the urban poor. The world's current population of 5.9 billion is split more or less equally between cities and rural areas. However, some 60 million people annually are moving into cities, and by 2005 urban areas are expected to surpass rural areas in population. By 2015, 26 cities in the world, most in countries now categorized as developing, are expected to have populations of 10 million or more.

7. National and international action can avert or mitigate the negative consequences of some of these trends, particularly for food security. Political, economic and social systems will be expected to provide the enabling environment necessary to ensure equitable access to food. Agriculture-in the broad definition including fisheries and forestry-will have to meet the needs of growing and increasingly urbanized populations, while at the same time protecting the natural resource base for the benefit of future generations.

Box 2. FAO's Constitution

The Preamble states:

"The Nations accepting this Constitution, being determined to promote the common welfare by furthering separate and collective action on their part for the purpose of:

  • raising levels of nutrition and standards of living of the peoples under their respective jurisdictions;
  • securing improvements in the efficiency of the production and distribution of all food and agricultural products;
  • bettering the condition of rural populations;
  • and thus contributing toward an expanding world economy and ensuring humanity's freedom from hunger;

hereby establish the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, hereinafter referred to as the "Organization" through which the Members will report to one another on the measures taken and the progress achieved in the field of action set forth above."

Article I defines the mandate of FAO as follows:

"1. The Organization shall collect, analyse, interpret and disseminate information relating to nutrition, food and agriculture. In this Constitution, the term "agriculture" and its derivatives include fisheries, marine products, forestry and primary forestry products.

2. The Organization shall promote and, where appropriate, shall recommend national and international action with respect to:

    (a) scientific, technological, social and economic research relating to nutrition, food and agriculture;

    (b) the improvement of education and administration relating to nutrition, food and agriculture, and the spread of public knowledge of nutritional and agricultural science and practice;

    (c) the conservation of natural resources and the adoption of improved methods of agricultural production;

    (d) the improvement of the processing, marketing and distribution of food and agricultural products;

    (e) the adoption of policies for the provision of adequate agricultural credit, national and international;

    (f) the adoption of international policies with respect to agricultural commodity arrangements.

3. It shall also be the function of the Organization:

    a) to furnish such technical assistance as governments may request;

    b) to organize, in cooperation with the governments concerned, such missions as may be needed to assist them to fulfil the obligation arising from their acceptance of the recommendations of the United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture and of this Constitution; and

    c) generally to take all necessary and appropriate action to implement the purposes of the Organizations as set forth in the Preamble."

8. Within this general scenario, a number of major trends and forces can be identified which are likely to have a bearing on FAO's future work (see Annex II) which can be summarized as follows:

9. Each of the trends presents both risks and opportunities for the Organization. A Strategic Framework for FAO's response to the challenges ýmplicit in this scenario must begin with consideration of the Organization's purpose.


10. The fundamental purpose of FAO is set out in the Preamble to the FAO Constitution (Box 2), which affirms the determination of Members "to promote the common welfare by furthering separate and collective action on their part for the purpose of:

raising levels of nutrition and standards of living of the peoples under their respective jurisdictions;

securing improvements in the efficiency of the production and distribution of all food and agricultural products;

bettering the condition of rural populations;

and thus contributing toward an expanding world economy and ensuring humanity's freedom from hunger".

11. The order of the elements in the Preamble, and the name given to the Organization, associating food and agriculture, were both significant, in that they recognized both the imperative of ensuring adequate nutrition and standards of living for all, and the importance of agriculture to doing so. And as was made clear in Article I of the Constitution, the term "agriculture" was to be understood in a broad sense, to include fisheries, marine products, forestry and primary forestry products.

12. Further insight into what was in the minds of those who formulated the Preamble is contained in a document presented, along with the Constitution, to the first conference, in Quebec City, which established FAO on 16 October 1945:

"If there is one fundamental principle on which FAO is based, it is that the welfare of producers and the welfare of consumers are in the final analysis identical.

For a vast majority of people, this is self-evident; they are the farmers, hundreds of millions of them, outnumbering all the other people, who produce the food they themselves consume and little or nothing besides.

But in the case of the two other great groups-the consumers who live in towns and work in industry and trade, and the farmers who sell a sizable proportion of their produce to this group-the identity of producer welfare and consumer welfare is by no means always self-evident. On the contrary, the interests of the two often apparently conflict.

But the conflict is only apparent. The exploitation of producers as a group will not in the long run benefit consumers, nor, in the long run, will it benefit producers if consumers as a group are put at a disadvantage. Wherever the contrary seems to be true, it is because all of the factors have not been taken into account, including the risk of social upheavals and wars.

There is always a larger framework in which producer and consumer interests are seen to be the same.

It will be the business of FAO to seek and to emphasize this larger framework, this whole view."

13. The fact that this text was written more than a half century ago is a tribute to the clarity of vision which characterized those instrumental in founding the Organization. That the purpose of FAO remains relevant, vital and valid was reaffirmed at the time of the celebration of FAO's Fiftieth Anniversary, in 1995.

14. This was an occasion for both a review of past experience and a look ahead. Two things were clear. The first was that enormous progress had been made in food and agriculture generally and in reducing the proportion of chronically undernourished in the population of the developing world. The second was that, despite all the progress, the undernourished still amounted to one-fifth of the total, and this in absolute terms meant over 800 million people without access to enough food to meet their basic requirements.

15. In the Quebec Declaration, approved by the Ministerial Meeting convened in Quebec City, Canada, and subsequently formally adopted by the FAO Conference, Members recalled each of the specific elements of the Preamble, and reaffirmed their political support to the Organization in carrying out "its mission to help build a world where all people can live with dignity, confident of food security".

16. They emphasised the promotion of agriculture, forestry and fisheries as key sectors in the quest for sustainable economic development, the empowerment of food producers and consumers, the sustainable use of natural resources for development and the need to build a global partnership for sustainable development. In its substance the Quebec Declaration reaffirms the basic principles on which FAO was founded. It is formulated, however, to reflect changes in perspective based on fifty years of experience, and on new paradigms emerging or accepted as the century moves towards its close.

17. The new paradigms emerge even more clearly in outcomes of the series of international conferences and summits convened in the Nineties. These generated a broad-based international consensus on development, as a common response by the international community to the situation at the end of the Twentieth Century. They drew attention particularly to the need for a concerted attack on poverty and environmental degradation. Still to come, however, was a clearer focus on the imperative of addressing hunger, as the most extreme and unacceptable manifestation of poverty, and on the twin necessities of producing enough food for the people while protecting and sustaining the resources of the planet. It remained for the World Food Summit to build on agreements reached in earlier fora, in order to add the essential dimension of food security to the agenda for action in the Twenty-first Century.

The World Food Summit-a new point of reference

18. At the same session in 1995 at which it adopted the Quebec Declaration, the FAO Conference decided to convene, under Article VI.5 of the Constitution, a World Food Summit with the following objectives:.

    1. to serve as a forum at the highest political level to marshal the global consensus and commitment needed to redress a most basic problem of humankind - food insecurity;
    2. to raise global awareness of the food security problem and promote the search for solutions;
    3. to take stock of recent developments and prospects for the world food situation including consideration of regional variations and trade in agricultural products;
    4. to establish a policy framework and to adopt a Plan of Action for implementation by governments, international institutions and all sectors of civil society to achieve sustained progress towards universal food security;
    5. to reinforce international cooperation in combating hunger and malnutrition; and
    6. to contribute, through the achievement of greater food security, to global stability and peace.

19. The Summit, held one year later, was the first global gathering at the highest political level to focus solely on food security, and in adopting the Rome Declaration on World Food Security and the World Food Summit Plan of Action it renewed the commitment of the international community to ensuring food for all. The Declaration enunciates both the ultimate goal and the immediate target: "We pledge our political will and our common and national commitment to achieving food security for all and to an ongoing effort to eradicate hunger in all countries, with an immediate view to reducing the number of undernourished people to half their present level no later than 2015."

20. A common thread which runs through the declarations and action plans adopted by the global conferences is that of national responsibility and international solidarity. The goals defined are goals which only states can achieve, but the multilateral institutions, each within its own mandate and sphere of competence, are called upon to help and support them in that effort.

21. Thus FAO has a major role to play in assisting countries to implement the provisions of the World Food Summit Plan of Action which fall within its mandate, as well as to monitor, through its Committee on World Food Security (CFS), overall progress in achieving the Summit's goals. In defining FAO's own goals, therefore, the Plan of Action is fundamental.

22. At the same time, the Organization has significant responsibilities, within the UN system, for assisting in implementation of parts of Agenda 21, adopted by the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED), and for aspects of the outcome of a number of other United Nations conferences, dealing inter alia with women, children, population and social development.

Global Goals

23. Keeping in mind the Basic Texts of FAO, it is possible to define three inter-related global goals which the Organization is specifically dedicated to helping Members achieve:

Access of all people at all times to sufficient nutritionally adequate and safe food, ensuring that the number of chronically undernourished people is reduced by half by no later than 2015.

The continued contribution of sustainable agriculture and rural development, including fisheries and forestry, to economic and social progress and the well being of all.

The conservation, improvement and sustainable utilization of natural resources, including land, water, forest, fisheries and genetic resources for food and agriculture.

24. These goals have been formulated taking into account a number of texts agreed at various international conferences, and in particular the World Food Summit and the UN Conference on Environment and Development. It should be stressed that they should not be seen as reopening debates which took place in those fora, nor as encompassing all aspects discussed in them. Rather the intention is to highlight those aspects of the issues for which a contribution is expected from FAO in view of its mandate and sphere of competence.

25. In the pursuit of these goals FAO must rely on a strong set of values which define it as an institution. It must also have a clear sense of its mission and a vision of success.


26. FAO's field of action touches upon the most basic of human rights and needs--that of freedom from hunger--as well as on crucial sectors of the world economy--agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

27. Certain fundamental values underlie the Constitution which Members accept on joining the Organization, and which are enunciated in the Oath of Office by which the staff of the Secretariat is bound:


28. FAO's mission, in fulfilment of the purpose for which it was established (Preamble to the Constitution) and in full respect of its mandate (Article 1 of the Constitution), is to help build a food-secure world for present and future generations.

29. In the coming 15 years it will give priority to assisting Members to:


30. The Organization's vision of success is to remain fully responsive to the ideals and requirements of its Members, and to be recognized for leadership and partnership in helping to build a food-secure world.

31. In the coming 15 years it will be:

32. Part II of this document addresses the ways in which FAO will translate this overall strategic orientation into concrete strategies for action. It highlights the challenge facing the Organization, which is to combine continuity of purpose with flexibility of approach in a changing world.


33. The corporate strategies of which the Strategic Framework is composed include both strategies to address Members' needs in achieving their global goals, and strategies to address cross-cutting issues related to the way in which the Organization carries out its tasks. The former are addressed in the first section below, which is followed by a section highlighting the different regional perspectives. The final section covers the strategies to address cross-organizational issues.

Strategies to Address Members' Needs

34. This section of the document proposes five corporate strategies under which nest twelve inter-disciplinary strategic objectives. The basic principles underlying the approach taken in formulating these corporate strategies and related strategic objectives were:

35. The intention in formulating them is to give an interdisciplinary strategic orientation to the Organization's work between the years 2000 and 2015. This does not preclude the formulation of sectoral strategic plans, as in the case of FAO's Strategic Plan for Forestry which is currently under discussion by Members. Similarly, the global goals referred to in Part I of this document will continue to have sectoral goals contributing to them, and in many cases specific plans or programmes of action agreed by countries. Examples include the Kyoto Declaration and Plan of Action on the Sustainable Contribution of Fisheries to Food Security, and the Leipzig Declaration and Global Plan of Action for the Conservation and Sustainable Utilization of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.

36. The rationale for the corporate strategy proposals is explained more fully in Annex II, and regional perspectives on them are covered in Annex IV. The elements which may contribute to the achievement of each strategic objective are indicated in the document in summary form, but essentially for the purpose of illustrating the type of disciplinary inputs which would need to be brought to bear at some point over the 15 year time-frame envisaged. As is clarified in Part III, the Implementation Programme for the Strategic Framework, the Medium Term Plan (MTP) will define more detailed strategies to achieve the objectives, in the light of the resources available. As the MTP will be a rolling plan, modified every biennium and renewed every six years, it will also provide the vehicle for refining the strategies during implementation, on the basis of experience and the results obtained in successive biennial Programmes of Work and Budget.

37. The means of action applied in implementing the strategies will also be determined at the more detailed planning stage. In their conception, all of the corporate strategies are rooted in the Organization's normative work, and will rely on the various modalities available to FAO as appropriate in each circumstance. They will also involve field activities, which will be carried out as a necessary and integral part of the strategies, provided that Members request them, that the requisite human and financial resources are available, and that they are relevant as means of testing normative hypotheses or ensuring practical feedback based on field experience.

38. The purpose of the corporate strategies is to give clearer focus and direction to the Organization's work. However, it is clear that achievement of the objectives defined will require the contribution of others. The fundamental importance of the action of Members themselves cannot be underestimated. In addition, the work of other organizations (UN and also non-UN partners) will play a crucial part in the effort. For each strategic objective, therefore, a summary indication is given of the main partnerships envisaged. An illustrative table giving more information on partnerships is contained in Annex III.

A. Contributing to the eradication of food insecurity and rural poverty, and addressing food, agriculture and natural resource emergencies.

39. If the global target set by the World Food Summit is to be met by no later than 2015, special efforts will have to be made by, and on behalf of, those countries where the problems are greatest. Generally, these are countries with a high incidence of chronic undernutrition, but they also include countries vulnerable to or suffering the effects of disasters and humanitarian crises, which are important causes of food insecurity.

40. The strategy involves targeted efforts to assist such countries, with the aim of making a significant contribution to countering several of the most preoccupying trends arising from the analysis of the external environment-the persistence of poverty, the widening of the gap between the affluent and the poor, the concern that there will be continued or even exacerbated inequality among countries in access to the benefits of economic and technological progress, and the continued risk of disaster-related and complex emergencies. Recognizing that poverty is a major cause of food insecurity, and that poverty eradication is a major goal of Members, the aim will be to ensure both clear focus on the spheres of FAO's particular concern, and coordination with the programmes of countries and partner organizations addressing the broader problem of poverty.

A.1 Sustainable livelihoods in rural areas and more equitable access by women and men to natural, economic and social resources and/or their benefits.

41. Approaches to rural development need to take into account the interactions between agriculture, fisheries and forestry and other sectors of the economy in income and employment generation and hence of the advantage of promoting pluriactivity among poor rural families in the pursuit of sustainable livelihoods. As recognized by the WFS Plan of Action, the promotion of equitable access to resources, in particular by gender, is a sine qua non for the success of such efforts. Critical to the attainment of better rural living standards will be investment in improved access to food, water and power supplies, as well as education and health services.

42. In approaching this objective, FAO's programmes in agriculture, fisheries and forestry will give emphasis to:

43. Strategy elements include:

a) promoting and supporting equitable access by women and men to land and other resources;

b) maximising the positive impact on nutrition and food security of rural development programmes by taking full advantage of the multiple contributions made by agriculture to improvement of nutrition and poverty reduction;

c) supporting gender-responsive, participatory and sustainable development approaches, including consideration of population issues;

d) improving the efficiency and effectiveness of both public and private sectors, local institutions, civil society and rural people's organizations in delivering services to disadvantaged rural populations, with special attention to the problems of women and youth;

e) promoting development strategies based on self-help, capacity-building and empowerment, including participatory resource management and planning, for disadvantaged rural producers;

f) identifying and reinforcing farm and non-farm enterprises to expand rural employment, particularly for women and youth;

g) promoting sustainable small-scale fisheries and aquaculture, using community-based, market driven approaches, in coastal and basin areas;

h) promoting forestry support to food security through food from trees and forests, protection of soils, watersheds, crops and livestock, and provision of opportunities for increased household income and employment;

i) implementing the Special Programme for Food Security in Low-Income, Food Deficit Countries (SPFS), as a vehicle for testing and demonstrating replicable approaches to rural livelihood improvements; and

j) assisting in mobilising investment in the agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors, from public and private, domestic and international sources, to contribute to food security and poverty eradication.


44. A fully inter-disciplinary approach will require a contribution from all departments and decentralized units, ensuring that advice on policy and investment builds on the normative work of the technical departments and draws on their skills. External partnerships will be crucial, and on each issue FAO will need to determine the nature of its own contribution in the light of work underway or planned by others. The long-standing cooperation with the World Bank, Regional Banks and IFAD will be deepened with the aim of increasing ODA flows in support of food security. Certain other UN organizations (notably WFP, WHO, ILO, UNICEF, UNDP, UNFPA, UNIFEM) have a major role, as do the CGIAR system, academic and national research institutions, specialized NGOs, farmers', rural peoples', women's and youth organizations and the private sector.

A.2 Recognition and targeting of vulnerable and disadvantaged groups with special measures to enable them to attain access to sufficient nutritionally adequate and safe food.

45. While poverty eradication should eventually result in food security for all, there are compelling reasons for promoting more direct attacks on the problem of undernutrition. Adequate nutrition alone, by improving health, can contribute significantly to poverty reduction, and conversely, lack of food prevents individuals from moving out of poverty. If the WFS target is to be met there is an immediate need for countries to adopt special measures directed to the particularly vulnerable and disadvantaged (e.g. the chronically undernourished in urban and rural areas, the rural poor and producers in marginal areas) to ensure that they do not to pass their entire lives underfed and bypassed by the development process.

46. The challenge for the countries with large segments of their population falling into this group, and for FAO in its efforts to assist them, is to address this need in an era of diminished state intervention and to obtain, allocate and administer resources for "safety nets" and targeted programmes in both urban and rural (particularly resource-poor) areas.

47. Strategy elements include:

    1. increasing awareness at the highest levels of government of the need to incorporate specific nutrition and food security objectives in development policies and programmes;
    2. assisting countries in creating and drawing on food insecurity and vulnerability maps to design and implement programmes to relieve chronic undernutrition;
    3. assessing and supporting national food assistance policies and programmes;
    4. promoting and supporting direct action to improve household food security and nutrition, particularly among food-insecure and socially disadvantaged populations;
    5. working with partner institutions to develop resource mobilization strategies for targeted programmes to reduce chronic undernutrition.


48. The major involvement would be from ES and SD, with inputs as necessary from AG, FI, FO and TC. However, this service goal contains the basis for greatly strengthened cooperation and joint work between FAO and the other Rome-based food agencies--IFAD, with its major focus on rural poverty eradication, and WFP for multilateral support to food assistance programmes which complement longer-term development efforts. Continued promotion of follow-up to the International Conference on Nutrition (ICN), and partnership with WHO and UNICEF in particular, will be equally crucial. Other UN organizations and the international financing institutions, academic and research institutions, parliamentary associations, NGOs and some elements of the private sector may join in targeted efforts.

A.3 Prevention and preparedness, early warning of emergencies and rehabilitation of natural resources and food production systems.

49. FAO can help to increase the resilience of countries, populations and communities and their capacity to cope with the actual and potential impacts of natural disasters and complex emergencies. Timely forecasting and early warning through combination of advanced satellite and more traditional approaches is required to alert countries and the international community to impending and actual emergencies. Moreover, once a calamity has occurred, countries generally need assistance as early as possible to restore their production capacity. In accordance with existing agreements on division of labour within the UN system, FAO is well-placed to help countries identify "exit strategies" drawing on the potential of the agriculture sector to contribute to restoring livelihoods in a sustainable manner.

50. The focus of efforts is likely to continue to be on FAO's capacity in early warning (GIEWS), relief and rehabilitation in the area of food and agriculture, and on the Emergency Prevention System for Transboundary Animal and Plant Pests and Diseases (EMPRES). There are also components for the fisheries and forestry sectors.

51. Strategy elements include:

    1. preparedness advice, continuous forecasting and early warning of food emergencies;
    2. early warning and response relating to pest and disease monitoring and control;
    3. disaster preparedness, early warning and mitigation for aquaculture, fisheries and forestry;
    4. impact and needs assessment of crop and food supply, and nutritional status, of affected populations;
    5. provision of immediate relief and rehabilitation assistance to restore production and accelerate recovery;
    6. guiding the choice and use of agricultural practices, technologies and support services, including for sustainable seed security, in rehabilitation efforts; and
    7. assisting in planning and mobilizing resources for a transition from recovery to development.


52. Internal partnerships are the key to ensuring an inter-disciplinary approach, as well as solid technical foundations for the assistance provided. External partners are numerous and vary depending on the activity. For early warning and food needs assessment, links with WFP, bilateral agency and NGO systems are crucial. For emergency prevention and preparedness, links are with the UN (including the Security Council), and with WMO, UNDRO/IDNDR, UNEP and ICLARM. Emergency response and rehabilitation is carried out within the overall UN system framework, guided by UN/OCHA, in close cooperation with the ICRC and major NGOs, while funding partners include multilateral, bilateral and non-governmental organizations.

A. Promoting, developing and reinforcing policy and regulatory frameworks for food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry.

53. International and domestic policy and regulatory frameworks for the food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors assume ever more crucial importance in an increasingly inter-dependent and globalized world economy. The strategy thus reposes on the foundation of the Organization's long-established work in this area, within its own mandate and in cooperation with other organizations, and recognizes also the growing demand by individual countries for assistance in developing their domestic policy, regulatory and standard-setting capacities.

B.1 International agreements, codes of conduct, standards and other instruments covering the conservation and management of natural resources and the production, safe use and fair exchange of agricultural, fishery and forest goods, and which enhance the contribution to food security of international trade in such goods.

54. There is an increasing need to improve the international regulatory framework for food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry so that it:

55. Strategy elements include:

    1. within the sphere of FAO's mandate, providing a forum for policy negotiations on the international regulatory framework at the global and regional levels;
    2. developing science-based standards to implement the international regulatory framework, in the area of food and agricultural products, biotechnology/biosafety, phytosanitary measures, seeds and planting material, livestock, forestry and responsible fisheries, including aquaculture; and
    3. enhancing the contribution of international agricultural trade to food security through commodity development activities, analysis and the holding of international consultations on commodity issues;
    4. providing trade policy advice on food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry in other fora dealing with the international regulatory framework, including in particular international trade fora;
    5. developing Members' capacities to participate in negotiations on the international regulatory framework, including in particular their capacities to influence reforms of the international trading environment and to participate in, benefit from and deal with issues relating to international conventions and conferences; and
    6. sensitizing the whole of FAO's membership to the special concerns of developing countries, including in food security.


56. Providing a forum for and facilitating the negotiation of international agreements and standards involves a multidisciplinary effort by technical, economic and legal units. External partners include the WTO, organizations in the UN system and outside, including international and regional technical and trade related agencies, as well as relevant civil society organizations (including producers' and consumers' organizations) and academic institutions. The joint FAO/WHO Codex Alimentarius Commission will continue to have an essential role.

B.2 National policies and institutional and legal mechanisms which respond to domestic requirements, international obligations, and changes in the international trading environment.

57. Growing competition for natural resources, and in particular land, water and genetic resources, together with privatisation, will place increasing demands on the regulatory functions of national governments. These functions must be exercised in a full understanding of the requirements of relevant international agreements or norms. FAO possesses a unique capability in the UN system for advising Members on the implications of the international trade policy and regulatory framework for national policies and legislation on food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and for delivering technical assistance on the formulation of such policies and legislation.

58. The service offered by FAO in this area will clearly be of more importance to developing countries. Key contributions will be advice and capacity-building for the development of sound national policies, legislation and institutional mechanisms that respond to national needs and international requirements.

59. Strategy elements include:

    1. guiding and assisting countries and civil society in understanding, adapting to and meeting the requirements of the international trade policy and regulatory framework in the food, agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors;
    2. providing advice on the development of sound national policies, legislation and institutional mechanisms, including the setting of appropriate standards in areas such as food quality and safety;
    3. helping member countries develop their capacity to respond to changes in the international trading environment; and
    4. developing arrangements with major multilateral and bilateral donors for assistance to member countries in the implementation of international agreements, standards and norms.


60. Advice on national policies and legislation must be multidisciplinary, involving technical, economic and legal units. External partners include financing agencies, WTO and GEF as well as other technical, trade related and training agencies, regional groupings, and relevant NGOs and academic institutions. FAO will also continue to work closely with UN system partners in the ACC Subcommittee on Water Resources, and with the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU).

C. Creating sustainable increases in the supply and availability of food and other products from the crop, livestock, fisheries and forestry sectors.

61. Ensuring the required increases in supply and availability of food to meet the needs and changing requirements of growing and increasingly urbanized populations implies that the demands on the agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors will change, and requires that countries make the appropriate strategic choices. At the same time, action to close the gap between yields obtained in research stations and those obtained in farmers' fields, identify appropriate agricultural practices and remove constraints to their application could make a major and immediate difference not only to supply and availability of food but also to producers' incomes.

62. The primary thrusts of this strategy are on: enhancing policy and institutional frameworks to guide sectoral development, taking into account changes in the role and functions of the state and the importance of private initiative; and supporting utilization of appropriate technologies and practices for sustainable intensification of production systems.

C.1 Strategic choices to improve efficiency in production, processing and marketing systems and meet the changing needs of producers and consumers.

63. The strategy will involve providing countries with a range of proven and appropriate options, and developing new ones if needed. Particular attention will be given to helping countries develop a policy environment and institutional framework which encourages investment in productive assets and services by farmers, small-scale entrepreneurs and the private sector, and which contributes to the mobilization of domestic resources for agricultural and rural development.

64. The strategy will also address systems management at the level of the production unit, the family, the business and the community in order to bring about greater efficiency and responsiveness to the market. Particular attention will be devoted to mainstreaming the role of women in production, processing and marketing systems.

65. Strategy elements include:

    1. identifying priority needs for improved sector and sub-sector policies, and conducting policy studies to address new concerns;
    2. providing advice on demand-driven agricultural support services (including the small-scale private sector), and on diversification and specialisation of production and markets to take advantage of opportunities and eco-regional differences;
    3. promoting practical approaches to improving farm and agro-business efficiency and the processing and commercialisation of products;
    4. responding to changing consumption patterns, particularly of urban consumers, and improving urban and peri-urban agriculture;
    5. supporting improved effectiveness and efficiency of fisheries and aquaculture, sustainable fish production and increased utilization of fish for human food;
    6. promoting the introduction of best practices and standards for the sustainable production of trees and forests, encouraging harmonization and complementarity between forest policies and those in other sectors;
    7. advising on institutional decentralisation to rural areas, using participatory diagnostic and impact analysis methods and tools for multi-sectoral rural development; and
    8. assisting countries to create an enabling environment for investments in the rural sector.


66. Internal partnerships between FAO technical units and decentralized multi-disciplinary teams will be crucial. At the national level a coordinated response from UN system organizations is essential, and dialogue will be fostered on aspects such as decentralisation and local area management. FAO will continue to seek to provide the sectoral perspective, including in forestry and fisheries, to the macro policy work of the Bretton Woods institutions. For policy choices and decision tools, FAO will strengthen links with the CGIAR, academic and research institutions, NGOs and producers'and consumers' associations. The international private sector may have interest in joint initiatives for local-level infrastructure and agri-business development.

C.2 Adoption of appropriate technologies to sustainably intensify production systems and ensure sufficient supplies of food and agricultural, fishery and forestry goods and services.

67. The strategy will address sustainable, intensified and diversified production systems. It will include concerted action to increase productivity and reduce the gap between actual and potential yields at farm level, as well as measures to increase farmers' net income. FAO's role is seen as primarily that of synthesiser and disseminator of technologies, approaches and decision support tools, as well as being a proponent of particularly successful solutions.

68. Work will include attention to integration of crops, livestock, trees and fish in sustainable production systems and to best practices and participatory approaches in integrated production and pest management.

69. Strategy elements include:

    1. monitoring technology development (e.g. biotechnology) and evaluating the implications of different technical options for diverse production systems;
    2. assisting in the choice and use of technologies, materials and support services to reduce the gap between actual and potential production of crops and livestock;
    3. providing advice and assistance on the economic viability and sustainability of technological options for production systems intensification;
    4. supporting sustainable fish production through improved information access, participatory tools, and assessment of locally relevant technology and management approaches;
    5. strengthening the technical foundation for forest product development and utilization, including wood and non-wood products;
    6. encouraging strengthened linkages between applied research systems at local, regional and global levels, in particular farmer-driven and participatory research;
    7. assisting countries to develop policies and programmes for rural energy, including renewable energy and bioenergy development and application;
    8. encouraging integration of sustainability concerns into the priorities, programming and implementation of National Agricultural Research Systems (NARS);
    9. implementing the Special Programme for Food Security (SPFS) and related follow-on investment mobilization; and
    10. encouraging community involvement in the testing, evaluation and improvement of locally relevant technologies and application of scientific methodologies.


70. FAO technical units and multi-disciplinary teams will primarily synthesise and transfer information, with clear value added, working with academia, the CGIAR and national research systems and other development agencies. CSOs are active partners in testing approaches locally. FAO will seek support from traditional funding sources as well as through innovative modalities such as South-South cooperation within the SPFS.

D. Supporting the conservation, improvement and sustainable utilization of land, water, fisheries, forest and genetic resources for food and agriculture.

71. The major challenge which this strategy addresses is safeguarding the sustainability of the world's food production systems. While there is a logical, and fully justified link between this work and that envisaged under Strategy C, they have been formulated as separate strategies in order to give appropriate recognition and weight to the twin necessities of producing and ensuring availability of enough food for the present (Strategy C), and of conserving the resources on which future generations will depend (Strategy D).

D.1 Integrated management of land, water, forestry, fisheries and genetic resources to enhance and sustainably utilise the resource base.

72. Improved management of natural resources is essential to developing a rational response to the continued degradation of and competition for agricultural, forestry and fisheries resources, including their genetic diversity. The strategy will involve identification and promotion of economically viable and environmentally sustainable, socially and culturally appropriate integrated resource management systems, in order to ensure efficient and safe use and, where necessary, protection of the resources, of the genetic base and the environment. This will require attention to the issues of land tenure, access rights, population and gender, and to the enhancement of national agricultural research, knowledge and information systems in agriculture, fisheries and forestry.

73. Strategy elements include:

    1. promoting the environmental, economic and social functions of agriculture, fisheries and forestry, while enhancing the positive and mitigating the negative impacts on the environment and natural resources;
    2. promoting farmer and community identification and use of appropriate and sustainable land and water management practices, including enhancement and maintenance of the environmental services provided by forests;
    3. enhancing capability for the conservation and sustainable management of forest resources at national level, including through participatory approaches and strengthened partnerships among forest institutions;
    4. promoting development and adoption of integrated resource management systems for fisheries and aquaculture supported by appropriate information exchange, research and policy advice;
    5. guiding management of plant and animal genetic resources, and addressing the threats to biodiversity, inter alia through the promotion of the concept of "functional biodiversity";
    6. enhancing the capacity of national agricultural research, knowledge and information systems to undertake impact assessment/analysis utilizing existing information, best practices and methodologies to monitor and assess performance;
    7. ensuring the incorporation of social issues, including rural development, population and gender-related issues in the sustainable management of natural resources; and
    8. assisting in the design of programmes and in the mobilization of resources for sustainable management of natural resources.


74. All FAO units dealing with natural resources management will aim at integrated approaches. External partners include: IFIs, GEF, UNDP, UNESCO, UNEP, UNFPA, for funding support, information dissemination, joint work in awareness building and identification of solutions; the private sector, NGOs, producers' and other civil society organizations for specific initiatives; scientific institutions and the CGIAR, in particular TAC and NARS Secretariats for research. Deliberations and decisions of intergovernmental bodies, ranging from regional fishery bodies to global fora such as the Commission on Sustainable Development will be taken into account in strategy implementation, and close links will be maintained with the secretariats of the conventions which resulted from UNCED.

D.2 Recognition of the future private and social costs of natural resource degradation, and of the benefits of conservation and rehabilitation, with attention to the resources and environments at greatest risk.

75. There is an urgent need in many countries, particularly in developing countries, to address resource and environmental issues in a way which minimises the adverse effects and rising costs of resource degradation. In so doing, a balance needs to be sought between immediate human needs for food and livelihoods and the imperative of preserving the resource base for future generations.

76. The strategy would involve providing assistance to member countries who request it:

Particular emphasis would be placed on the facilitation of cross-sectoral linkages between relevant ministries and advanced research institutions, universities, extension services, the private sector and civil society organizations, including those of farmers, fishers and foresters.

77. Strategy elements include:

    1. enhancing institutional and planning capacities at local, national and regional levels to incorporate social, economic and environmental issues into policy decisions and respond to growing scarcity, degradation of and competititon for natural resources;
    2. promoting holistic approaches requiring the harmonization of sectoral and sub-sectoral policies concerning land use and agricultural, forest and fisheries resources, including of land use policies and policies in other sectors;
    3. developing strategies for integrated land, water, fisheries and forest resource management taking into account interactions between upstream and downstream users and environmental needs;
    4. fostering participatory approaches to conservation of trees and forests in areas affected by desertification and uncontrolled deforestation;
    5. integrating sustainability concerns into the priorities, programming and implementation of national agricultural research systems (NARS), to facilitate cross-sectoral linkages between relevant ministries and advanced research institutions, universities, NGOs, extension services, the private sector and farmers'organizations.


78. Sectoral/sub-sectoral policy harmonisation and strengthened collaborative mechanisms are essential to developing successful holistic policies for sustainable resource management. As a result, partnerships both inside and outside FAO are of crucial importance. External partners are essentially the same as for D1. There are a few additional ones that have developed a special expertise focussed on policy, information and analysis work and they include in particular: WHO, ILO and the CGIAR (as well as WB and other centres of international expertise or national such as USDA).

E. Improving data availability and information exchange, monitoring, assessing and analysing the global state of food and nutrition, agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and promoting a central place for food security on the international agenda.

79. This work area derives its legitimacy first and foremost from the Basic Texts, specifically Article I of the Constitution. Moreover, the adoption of the Plan of Action of the World Food Summit, and the assignment of responsibility to FAO's Committee on World Food Security for the monitoring of progress in its implementation, add further to the Organization's responsibility for global monitoring and assessment of all aspects of food and agriculture and of progress towards achieving food security for all.

E.1 A comprehensive, current and reliable set of data, disseminated to all Members and accessible to the international community and the public at large.

80. A common purpose is to ensure that Members and civil society have access to and the capacity to utilise data for informed decision making, policy development and effective monitoring of policy implementation. There is an emphasis on seeing data in cross-sectoral terms where considerable value is added by the juxtaposition of information from different disciplines, and on providing disaggregation of data according to gender and other parameters which can facilitate policy and programme formulation.

81. The strategy would include the following elements:

    1. facilitating the creation or enhancement of statistical and information systems which include the best analytical and decision support tools;
    2. expanding the scope of data collected in response to increased requirements in the areas of world food supply (including production and trade), vulnerability mapping, natural resources (including land, water, marine, forest and genetic resources), farm income and productivity, gender, age and land tenure data and environmental indicators;
    3. further enhancing statistical and data standards, norms and methodologies with a view to reaching common definitions at an international level;
    4. introducing a wider range of technological frameworks (i.e. geo-referenced spatial information management systems);
    5. opening up FAO technical information systems, where appropriate, to inter-active data exchange;
    6. continuing development of WAICENT as the key international information service which provides the framework for the harmonization and dissemination of data falling within FAO's mandate; and
    7. fostering capacity building at a national level to improve the quality of data collection and aggregation using modern technologies including integrated spatial information systems, wherever possible.


82. This requires full cooperation between all technical departments along with strong support from AFI in providing the state-of-the-art IT infrastructure and from GII and GIL in providing the communication and public information know-how to ensure that outputs are effectively delivered to clients. External partnerships primarily in the area of information sharing will also be broad, including with IFIs, other UN Organizations, CGIAR institutions, NGOs and regional bodies. FAO's role in establishment of statistical and data standard, norms and methodologies will be supportive to those of the UN Statistical Division. Financial support will be sought from potential donors to improve national capacities to improve data completeness and accuracy.

E.2 Regular assessments of current and prospective food supplies, and outlook for developments in food security and nutrition, agriculture, fisheries, forestry, natural resources and scientific knowledge.

83. This important strategic objective for FAO as a provider of global assessments and analyses includes major outputs such as Agriculture Towards 2015, the State of Food and Agriculture, the State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture and the State of the World's Forests, as well as many other publications. It covers the need to address a broad range of issues, including:

84. In addressing these areas, emphasis will be given to the need to identify and draw the attention of the international community to emerging issues requiring action. Dissemination of FAO assessments needs to be supported by professional expertise in publicising the issues to stimulate awareness and action by the international community.

85. Strategy elements include:

    1. analysing and assessing the state of nutrition, food and agriculture and food security globally and producing outlook assessments and strategic perspective studies for the international community;
    2. assessing status of and trends in global fisheries and aquaculture, based on more diversified data and greater participation of partner organizations and programmes;
    3. strengthening and diversifying forest resource assessments and increasing the global accessibility of such information;
    4. synthesizing information and providing analytical support related to agricultural, fisheries and forest resources management, including land use systems, resource use intensification and farming system dynamics;
    5. assessing sustainable development trends, including through comparative analyses of rural development processes, policies and institutions; and
    6. improving the presentation of assessments and analyses to a wide audience.


86. Internal partnerships are critical to make assessments and analyses comprehensive. External partnerships are numerous, as FAO analytical work depends upon data and assessments from a wide variety of sources, including the IFIs, other UN organizations or specialist organizations and academic institutions. FAO takes a leadership role in the assessment of data falling within its mandates but relies on others for inputs in areas such as scientific developments.

E.3 Focus on food security through monitoring and reporting on implementation of the World Food Summit Plan of Action, and co-operating with all partners, including in civil society.

87. The World Food Summit's conclusions cover the range of "coordinated efforts and shared responsibilities" essential to attain its objectives, and assign to the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) responsibility for monitoring implementation of the Plan of Action. FAO provides the secretariat for the CFS and therefore has a major responsibility to collect and analyse information from all sources to facilitate the Committee's monitoring task.

88. Assistance to countries to follow up global conferences and summits is provided within a UN system-wide framework, and in addition to co-operating in this broader exercise, the major thrust of FAO's action, in cooperation with IFAD and WFP, will be to optimise the synergy between UN partners in follow up the World Food Summit. The strategy will build on these interrelated efforts also to raise awareness of food security issues in both governments and civil society.

89. Strategy elements include:

    1. servicing the Committee on World Food Security in its task of monitoring of implementation of WFS Plan of Action and of the achievement of the Summit target;
    2. providing analysis and promoting exchange of experience of best practices through the CFS and other fora;
    3. implementing FAO's contribution to the global component of the International FIVIMS Programme; and
    4. providing the secretariat support and normative products for the ACC Network on Rural Development and Food Security, promoting concerted action by UN partners at country level, working with government and civil society organizations, and facilitating input by network members and countries to the CFS monitoring process.


90. All FAO units are mobilised in support of the WFS Plan of Action. External partnerships mirror those established for Summit preparations, with the addition of those involved in new initiatives such as FIVIMS and the ACC Network. Work with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR), and with non-UN partners such as the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and other organizations with a particular contribution to make in Summit follow-up will also be pursued. The focus of FAO's efforts will be to try to engage the entire international community in the process of translating the Summit undertakings into reality. In this connection, FAO will also continue to participate actively in sessions of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), which is charged with monitoring implementation of the outcomes of recent global conferences and summits.

Strategies to Address Cross-Organizational Issues

91. In addition to the substantive strategies to provide services to Members, several cross-organizational issues also require attention. This section contains a synthesis of these issues and proposes strategies for dealing with them. Such strategies will relate to the implementation of all of FAO's programmes, and consequently also to the achievement of the strategic objectives covered in the preceding section.

A. Ensuring Excellence

The Issue

92. At a time of decreasing resources for multilateral organizations and shrinking ODA flows, coupled with the presence of many institutions working in areas touching on FAO's mandate, the Organization faces the challenge of remaining a preeminent and authoritative source of information, advice and assistance.

93. On the other hand, FAO is in a unique position to build on its existing strengths including the wide range of disciplines under a single roof, fifty years of accumulated experience, its presence in many countries, its well-recognized and widely accepted independence and its world wide coverage.

94. It is therefore essential to choose those areas in which FAO expects to be able to maintain technical leadership and ensure the required action to enhance the capacity for excellence. Among the criteria suggested for choosing such areas would be that the issue is within FAO's mandate and capacity, that it has transboundary implications and the potential for agreements to support international action, that there is a clear and growing demand for work on it and that FAO has a clear competitive edge in dealing with it, due to its unique character and strengths.

95. A corollary is that wherever FAO is not the "lead" player, its activities need to be planned in the light of others' work, to minimise overlap and promote synergy. In both cases, partnerships and alliances, based on clear divisions of labour, must be strengthened.


96. The proposed strategy to enhance FAO's capacity for excellence is to:

    1. evaluate each technical area and/or major problem with a view to determining whether FAO is or has the potential for being a centre of excellence, using an agreed set of criteria;
    2. select an appropriate number of key areas where FAO has good prospects for either reaching or maintaining this status;
    3. address the question in all its dimensions (the information base, normative and policy aspects, practical action);
    4. put in place the necessary measures for human resource development (including accelerated programmes of technical staff development) and for quality control of outputs; and
    5. as resources permit, ensure a built-in component of "organizational learning" to guarantee continuous review and adjustment in the light of results.

B. Enhancing Inter-disciplinarity

The Issue

97. Inter-disciplinary approaches are clear pre-requisites to successful and sustainable agricultural and rural development. In fact, the review of "successful" activities undertaken by the technical departments often revealed activities with a strong inter-disciplinary approach and, in several cases, attributed their success to that fact (e.g. AT 2010). This presents two fundamental challenges for the Organization:

98. This issue also has to be seen in the broader UN system context, as FAO is itself a sectoral agency which needs to ensure that its development efforts are a part of the broader inter-sectoral effort of the UN (see also section on Broadening Partnerships and Alliances).


99. The proposed strategy is to:

    1. strengthen the institutional capacity to define and analyze cross-sectoral problems, and to formulate goals and strategies in an inter-disciplinary manner, especially through the strategic planning process;
    2. explicitly foresee cross programme planning as part of the preparation of the Medium-Term Plan with six year objectives;
    3. strengthen the relationship between plans for HQ units and those for decentralized units and forge more effective technical cooperation in their implementation;
    4. enhance existing inter-departmental mechanisms to put greater emphasis on the cross-sectoral aspects of programme implementation and facilitate intra-departmental cooperation - both between and within divisions;
    5. ensure the requisite attention in all programmes and activities to gender mainstreaming and to participatory processes; and
    6. introduce indicators of success which properly reflect FAO's contribution to planned outcomes, and the concept of accountability.

C. Broadening Partnerships and Alliances

The Issue

100. FAO is first and foremost a member of the United Nations family of organizations, and the partnerships which derive from this status, and which constitute an important comparative advantage, need to be broadened and strengthened, taking into full account the ongoing process of UN Reform. At the same time, the changing global context requires that further partnerships or strategic alliances must be developed with important actors, both state and non-state, outside the UN system, in order to ensure complementarity, reduced fragmentation of action, greater leverage on policy issues and cost savings.

101. FAO will need to maintain its proactive role in ensuring a coherent UN system approach to implementation of the World Food Summit Plan of Action, as well as continuing and strengthening its contribution to the follow-up of other major conferences and participating in other system-wide initiatives. Special attention also needs to be paid to further strengthening the links, and potential for synergy, among the Rome-based organizations--FAO, WFP, IFAD and IPGRI.

102. Account must also be taken of the significant changes which have taken place or will occur in the respective roles and responsibilities of the state, the market and civil society. While maintaining its independence and neutrality, FAO needs to build constructive and effective relations and partnerships with non-state actors, based on its own and their comparative advantages. This will also permit more effective focus on the particular issues of relevance to women and youth.


103. The elements of the strategy of strengthening partnerships within the UN system will be to:

    1. remain an active partner in inter-agency work from the policy level down to the country level. At the decentralized level, FAO should continue to cooperate with sister organizations within the framework of the UN Resident Coordinator system;
    2. maintain task manager responsibility, in cooperation with IFAD and WFP, in running the ACC Network on Rural Development and Food Security, in support of implementation of the World Food Summit Plan of Action;
    3. continue to contribute to inter-agency and inter-governmental action to follow up other major conferences and summits, and to further develop "bilateral" cooperation and joint work with individual organizations;
    4. remain also an active partner of funding programmes such as UNDP and UNFPA, in responding to requests by recipient countries, and in participating as a full-fledged partner in exercises such as the Common Country Assessments (CCAs) and UN Development Assistance Frameworks (UNDAFS);
    5. further strengthen cooperation with the IFIs, building on their readiness to seek a broader base of cooperation with FAO, as evidenced by new memoranda of understanding signed with them at the highest policy level; and
    6. ensure closer cooperation with the CGIAR through the established institutional links (World Bank, UNDP, UNEP) and joint activities with the individual centres themselves.

104. The strategy aimed at broadening partnerships with civil society and non-governmental organizations will be to:

    1. improve information sharing and cooperation with technical and regional NGO networks;
    2. encourage policy dialogue at country, regional and global levels, including improved access to FAO technical meetings;
    3. promote the Food for All Campaign National Committees;
    4. facilitate specific cooperative programmes, i.e. by improving Civil Society Organizations' (CSOs) participation in planning, formulation and implementation of specific programmes and projects, with particular attention to the SPFS; by fostering capacity building for CSOs; and working with CSOs in agricultural rehabilitation efforts;
    5. increase the attractiveness of FAO programmes to multilateral and bilateral donors which attach importance to CSO participation; and
    6. strengthen dialogue with CSOs/NGOs on the use of the resources they themselves invest in agricultural development and food security programmes.

105. The strategy for the private sector will be to:

    1. enter into dialogue to remove any misconceptions that may exist with respect to an institution such as FAO, and also to get a clear understanding of agri-business interests which would be compatible with FAO's objectives;
    2. establish a corporate policy and practice within FAO with regard to private sector partners, to strenghten cooperation without compromising FAO's independence;
    3. explore with the private sector how investments in new technology can be steered to bring greater benefit to developing countries;
    4. obtain private sector support for FAO programmes, including both fund raising through sponsorships and revenues from FAO services rendered to the private sector, as well as coalitions and bilateral projects with the private sector;
    5. play an "honest broker" role in increasing private sector investment in agriculture; and
    6. work to enhance the capacities of the private sector in developing countries, especially in providing effective market processing and financial services.

D. Continuing to Improve the Management Process

The Issue

106. FAO needs to provide cost-effective and responsive services in a more competitive environment, if it is not to be marginalized by private sector and non-governmental service providers which may not have an equivalent breadth and depth of technical expertise, but which are capable of moving with greater speed and flexibility. The internal analysis identified a number of areas where further improvement could be made in various aspects of the management processes. In all cases, work is already underway to respond to these aspects but, for completeness, this issue is addressed below. Two key areas have been identified: human resource management and systems support to the management process.

107. Human resources are the essence of any service institution. In the case of FAO they make up 84.5% of the Regular Budget including staff (68.4%) and Other Human Resources (16.1%). The fundamental challenge is to optimise the planning, recruitment/acquisition, management and development of these resources, in order to attract and retain staff of the calibre required to ensure its continued functioning as a centre of excellence. During the coming 15 years, staff turnover of 70% is projected. While this implies a risk of depletion of capacity and of loss of institutional memory, which must be countered with appropriate measures, it also provides an opportunity to ensure that the Organization acquires and/or strengthens the skills and competencies required to face the challenges of the future.

108. In seeking solutions to immediate problems and establishing the basis for addressing the nger-term questions, FAO needs to keep in mind the principles on which the International Civil Service was founded when the UN Charter was signed. Moreover, it must continue to pursue the achievement of equitable geographical distribution, in line with its Basic Texts. Expansion of cooperation with other organizations applying the UN Common System of Salaries and Allowances, already very strong, would be an invaluable adjunct and support, particularly as part of measures to permit career development within the International Civil Service.

109. Finally, it is committed, in the words of the recent ACC statement on Gender Equality and Mainstreaming in the work of the United Nations system, to ensuring that "the institutional culture is both gender-sensitive and gender-responsive, and that ...staff policies, programme budgets and resource allocations reflect (its) commitment to gender equality goals".


110. Most of the elements of the following strategy are effectively in the process of being implemented.

111. Under human resources management, to:

    1. add flexibility to human resource planning and management, including further streamlining of contractual arrangements for non staff human resources;
    2. introduce indicators of success which properly reflect FAO's contribution to planned outcomes but which are also compatible with performance management procedures;
    3. develop human resources management plans to match programme requirements through timely recruitment and staff development, including training in new office technologies;
    4. consider the introduction of more flexible work arrangements;
    5. strengthen management practices in the human resources areas, including through further management training and development;
    6. create the enabling environment which can foster innovation, initiative and teamwork; and
    7. continue to foster effective staff-management collaboration through consultation with staff, including consultation with the staff associations on the conditions of employment.

112. Under systems support to the management process, to:

    1. develop and implement financial accounting and management systems;
    2. develop and implement a human resources management system;
    3. develop and implement a new planning, budget preparation, workplanning and programme implementation monitoring systems;
    4. create a corporate data warehouse as the repository of validated administrative data and as a primary source of management information; and
    5. provide appropriate analytical tools for users to be in a position to make best use of available data.

E. Leveraging Resources for FAO and its Members

The Issue

113. FAO's capacity to perform its mission is conditioned by tightening availability of resources, both of core funds for the Regular Programme of Work and of extra-budgetary contributions for technical cooperation. What is not clear is the future trend for resources. Will the pendulum swing back in favour of the multilateral international organizations as governments and the public at large appreciate the unique services provided by these institutions?

114. Should resources continue to stagnate, the consequence will be an increased gap between the expectations generated by the mandate and the capacity of the institution to fulfil them.


115. The proposed strategy is to increase the leverage of resources in support of FAO's mandated functions through efficient and effective programme management; effective targeting of its work to the FAO priority areas of interest to donors and consolidation and expansion of funding sources.

116. In developing the strategy, the emphasis is on expanding the total resources applied to the programmes espoused by the Organization and not necessarily on the amount of resources managed by FAO. In this regard, a key aspect will be mobilising domestic and external resources for the agricultural and rural sector, including preparation of investment programmes and projects associating all stakeholders at national and international level, so as to ensure proper follow-up in terms of local commitment and financing by major multilateral donors.

Programme design, efficiency and effectiveness

117. In the case of the Regular Programme of Work, the approach is to improve programme management so that Governments are convinced of the validity of FAO's activities and focus (see section on Enhancing Inter-disciplinarity).

118. For technical assistance and investment programmes, the concentration will be on sound formulation, efficiency and timeliness and will involve:

    1. strengthening of the current country focus system, based on the FAORs and the decentralized TCA/TCO groups;
    2. ensuring adequate resources for well considered programme and project formulation;
    3. wider application of effective systems (i) to permit monitoring of the costs of supporting different types of projects, as well as (ii) to systematically track shortcomings in implementation performance; and
    4. continuing efficiency savings with a view to reducing the cost of supporting field programmes and placing FAO in a better position to compete for resources.

Targeting of programmes

119. For the Regular Programme, targeting is inherently achieved through the strategic and medium-term planning processes. However, donors should be positively encouraged to support activities of the Regular Programme so as to increase the total level of resources made available to satisfy the performance of the normative functions implied by FAO's mandate while avoiding undue influence of such donors on the resulting normative outputs.

120. For the field programme, the priority should be on ensuring an integrated approach, in which projects are placed within a longer-term, broad-based framework which facilitates the achievement of results which will be sustainable. It will also be important to support FAO pilot programmes aimed at testing and proving normative hypotheses, and on ensuring the requisite feedback of field experience to inform FAO's normative work.

121. In order to ensure maximum effect, the Organization's investment promotion and preparation function should continue to be strengthened. FAO is unique among UN organizations in having a strong and well-proven investment follow-up mechanism, which should be fully exploited to ensure the widest possible impact. Increased mobilization of multilateral funds from official sources such as the IFIs for agricultural and rural development and, in particular for food security should proceed hand in hand with reinforced efforts to influence the flow of national public funds, as well as international and domestic private funds and savings, into rural sector investments.

Consolidation and expansion of funding sources

122. Besides the current range of instruments to reach out to the traditional donor community, FAO will:

    1. strengthen the dialogue with newly emerging developing countries, e.g. in Asia and in Latin America, willing to support development cooperation and to use FAO as channel, in particular for countries in the same regions;
    2. encourage governments of developing countries to use FAO as conduit for technology transfer and know-how acquisition to be funded from their own resources or from the proceeds of loans under UTF arrangements;
    3. mobilize donations from private individuals for small-scale interventions in developing countries;
    4. further strengthen the partnership programmes FAO has put in place since 1994 and develop new partnerships with the private sector and private foundations that will increase the leveraging effect of FAO's own resources; and;
    5. act as facilitator for emerging cooperation between municipalities and other regional entities of both developed and developing countries.

F. Communicating FAO's Messages

The Issue

123. FAO recognises that communications must be regarded as an integral part of its substantive programmes. Even in times of budgetary stringency, it is necessary to invest in the process of influencing public opinion, as the Organization cannot rely on the influence of a knowledgeable few to sell the added value of the Organization to others. FAO's ability to secure the necessary support to fulfil its mandate depends upon the quality and effectiveness of its communications in countering misperceptions, building understanding and support and informing key audiences, including policy and decision-makers, of the unique services it offers to the international community at large.

124. FAO needs to communicate general messages related to its overall mandate, as well as specific messages directed towards particular audiences or related to the priorities of the Organization. Delivering these messages effectively involves dialogue and a genuine exchange of information and views both within the Secretariat and with FAO's constituency and key interlocutors such as the media, NGOs and national and community leaders.

125. The Organization now has a Corporate Communication Policy and Strategy, introduced in 1998, which provides the basis for strengthening of a participatory process of communication planning, and implementation through a flexible, focused and professional public information operation.


126. The strategy will involve:

    1. improving internal communication between technical and information professionals, and enhancing the capacity of technical departments to deliver information;
    2. identifying and targeting strategic external audiences and concentrating on priority issues, using an integrated campaign approach wherever feasible;
    3. setting aside resources as a component part of substantive strategies for broad-based information and communication activities aimed at ensuring that stakeholders are informed of and support FAO's actions;
    4. reaching out directly to civil society and the general public to raise awareness and understanding of the issues related to food security and of the areas where FAO has a comparative advantage in the search for solutions. This includes uses of all branches of the media as a channel to communicate key messages on the theme of food security and to promote the important role of FAO in helping countries to achieve the goals of the Word Food Summit; and
    5. pursue World Food Day, TeleFood and the Food for All Campaign as a means for heightening public awareness and generating resources for food security and agricultural and rural development work.


127. This part of the document outlines the programme for implementation of the Strategic Framework 2000-2015 following its adoption by the Conference in November 1999

128. The Strategic Framework forms an essential part of the enhanced programme-budget process now approved for the Organization. When fully implemented, this process will include the Strategic Framework, with its 10 to 15 year time dimension, a Medium Term Plan (MTP) for a six-year period and a biennial Programme of Work and Budget (PWB). The Medium Term Plan will ensure the link between the agreed strategic objectives and FAO's programme of work. It will thus become FAO's Corporate Plan for a six-year period, while the Programme of Work and Budget will essentially become FAO's short term Business Plan.

129. The essential functions of implementation monitoring and programme evaluation will continue in the new process, and be reported upon through the Programme Implementation Report and the Programme Evaluation Report. The precise form of these reports is still under study.

130. The following table shows the elements of the new regime:

  Period Frequency Purpose
Strategic Framework 10-15 years about every 6 years To set the strategic direction
Medium-term Plan 6 years rolling plan every two years To establish programme priorities and project resource requirements

Programme of Work and Budget

2 years 2 years To appropriate resources and seek approval for the two year programme
Programme Implementation Report 2 years 2 years To provide quantitative post facto reporting on programme implementation
Programme Evaluation Report 6 years or more 2 years To provide selective qualitative analytical evaluation of programme implementation

Planning Framework

The Strategic Framework

131. The Strategic Framework establishes the overall definition of those areas in which Members of the Organization require FAO's services. It does this in the form of twelve strategic objectives with associated strategies which become the basis of all programme planning within the Organization. It also defines the key cross-organizational strategic issues which need to be addressed in order to ensure that the Organization has or acquires the optimum capacity to provides the services sought by Members. In addition, the Strategic Framework, includes definition of the criteria for priority setting with a view to their application in the Medium-term Plan as described below.

132. While the Strategic Framework has a time frame of 10 to 15 years, it is recognised that it may need to be updated periodically - either because of major events on the international scene (e.g. key international conferences, etc.) or because of the changing internal and external environment. In this regard, it is considered that the time-frame for the strategies addressing cross-organizational issues is generally shorter than for those addressing Members' needs. Therefore, without intending to be too prescriptive, a revision every six years or so may be appropriate but this would be subject to review closer to the time.

The Medium Term Plan

133. The Medium Term Plan will propose programmes which address each strategic objective in the Strategic Framework. These will be accompanied by information on the results planned to be achieved, including outputs, effectiveness criteria and indicators. It will be a rolling plan, to be updated every two years by deleting completed programme entities and including the new ones which are proposed to be commenced in the new planning period. The revision will also take account of the outcome of evaluations and implementation performance reporting although it will not, in the interest of economy, seek to replicate these reports.

134. The programme entities constituting the Medium Term Plan fall into three categories: Technical Projects (TP), Continuing Programme Activities (CP) and Technical Service Agreements (TS), the latter two concerning outputs and services which the Organization is committed to provide on a fairly constant or continuing basis (for a detailed definition see below). As Technical Projects can be for any period up to six years, only one third will, on average, be "new" in any one biennium, thus reducing the volume of work involved in reviewing the Plan. The document will concentrate on justifying the "new" entities proposed to be introduced in the upcoming biennium, while at the same time presenting the complete picture for each strategic objective. Each of the new entities will be accompanied by a more detailed explanation of the objectives, outputs, related time-frames, inputs and estimated lifetime costs.

Programme of Work and Budget

135. Rather than serving as the principal foundation of the planning and budgeting system of the Organization, as it does at present, the PWB will become less of a programme and more of a budgetary document and will represent the detailed implementation plan for a two year time-slice of the Medium Term Plan. As such, it will become a vehicle for fine tuning agreed activities to match available budgetary resources.

Programme Evaluation Report (PER)

136. The precise form of this report is currently under review as requested by the Programme Committee at its 80th Session in September 1998. While it is too early to draw any conclusion, it is expected that the coverage will tend to be driven more by the new cycle inherent in the Strategic Framework and the Medium Term Plan. The new Programming Model would eventually also allow the Programme Evaluation Report to focus on selected programme entities, with particular regard to their effect, impact and implications for the design of future entities.

Programme Implementation Report (PIR)

137. Some Members have suggested that the Programme Evaluation and Implementation Reports be integrated into a single document. However, given the difference in their time frames and their scope, the general feeling is that the Programme Implementation Report now needs to be redesigned and integrated with the hitherto separately issued Certified Audited Accounts and FAO Annual Review to produce an FAO Biennial Report. This would both avoid duplication and reduce overall costs. It also implies a somewhat more concise and attractive document. The preliminary thoughts are that this might best be accomplished by putting the quantitative data concerning outputs achieved on WAICENT, rather than by including them in the document itself.

Planning Methodology - New Programme Model

138. The MTP and PWB documents will be based on a new programme model, with the following features:

139. The advantage of the new programme model is that these features, taken together, will provide a mechanism for harnessing a critical mass of resources, within a clear time horizon, in order to achieve an intended and precise result. Such results will be designed to contribute to the achievement of one or more of the strategic objectives established and agreed in the Strategic Framework.

140. The planning model foresees formulation of Technical Projects (TP), Continuing Programme Activities (CP), and Technical Service Agreements (TS), defined as follows:

141. For each of the above-mentioned entities, the following will be stipulated:

142. Rationale: Contribution to the corporate strategy in question, identifying the need to be met and stating why it is important that FAO - rather than another agency or organization - meet the need.

143. Objectives: Expressed in terms of benefits to the users, with quantified targets when possible.

144. Outputs: The major outputs which will allow the stated objective to be achieved will be identified. These will probably be divided, to the extent possible, between the following categories:

145. For major outputs, it will be necessary to identify:

User focus - who is the output going to be used by? (e.g. technical staff of government and private sector institutions concerned );

Efficiency - was this the lowest-cost way to deliver outputs of desired quality at the required time?; and

Effectiveness criteria and indicators - was the output used and how? e.g. adoption of standards by countries is an effectiveness criterion, publication of standards is not.

146. Links: Links of three types will need to be identified and defined:

Links to other TPs, CPs and TSs -- the contribution that is expected in terms of outputs towards the achievement of the objective - this will be the key record of the nature and extent of inter-disciplinarity at this level;

Links to the field programme -- the substantive inter-action with the Field Programme and the extent to which funding is assumed and/or assured;

Links to partners (i.e. other organizations) -- a description of the nature of the link (consultation/contracted services/partnership programme/joint activities/production of specific outputs by the partner).

147. Managerial arrangements: a clear indication of management arrangements envisaged, particularly where various units are involved.

148. Appraisal: Each technical project and continuing programme activity will be subject to a specific appraisal aimed at determining the priority of the proposal using the criteria which are further described below.

Priority Setting in the Context of the New Planning Framework

149. While Members may have their own views on the relative importance of each of the twelve strategic objectives, the proposed framework does not attempt to rank them or apply lower or higher priority between them. This is because the importance of prioirties comes into play at the resource allocation stage which occurs first in the development of the Medium Term Plan.

150. However, the Strategic Framework is the appropriate place to establish the criteria for priority setting which, in turn, requires an examination of FAO's comparative advantages and consequently its potential partners and their capacities.

Criteria for Priority-Setting

151. It will be recalled that the overall criteria approved by the Council at its 110th Session in November 1995 as regards priority activities were:

152. Since the criteria originally established by the Council were developed to support a budgetary reduction exercise, these have had to be adapted to the more general process of appraising programme proposals, as follows:

153. These were the criteria used by all technical departments in developing the initial set of entities for 2000-2005. However, on the basis of experience and further developments, it is realized that they may need to be further modified in future.

Major Comparative Advantages

154. Clearly comparative advantage is an important criterion in priority setting and therefore it follows that this criterion needs to be more fully defined.

155. FAO's major comparative advantages are derived from an analysis of the Organization's general strengths, recognizing that while they are considerable, they constitute comparative advantages only when appropriately brought to bear on problems for which the intervention of an Organization such as FAO is needed. They are briefly described below.

Authority and status as a global inter-governmental organization

156. FAO has the mandate and membership to enable it to take a global view of problems in its domain of competence. As an inter-governmental organization, it is able to address issues at both the national and international levels, both directly and in partnership with other organizations. In this regard, FAO can both furnish technical, economic and legal expertise.

FAO as an "honest broker"

157. FAO can act as an "honest broker", identifying and advocating common solutions independent from specific ideological and national perspectives. In this regard, it can provide a neutral forum for the negotiation and development of international agreements, codes of conduct, technical standards and other instruments.

Unparalleled information source and isntitutional memory

158. FAO's wealth of experience and of information, collected, analysed and disseminated on a continuous basis, constitutes an unique asset, which is both available to Members and a support to the Secretariat's activities. Without this, it would be virtually impossible to carry out much of the essential work which is expected by the membership, and which depends for its authority and value on FAO's being able to provide a dimension (its institutional memory) not obtainable from other sources.

Broad networking capacity with Members and other partners

159. The Organization has wide access to decision-makers in Member Nations. As part of the UN system, it is involved with many international initiatives and is able to offer an institutional framework for inter-country cooperation, cutting across geographical boundaries and even political or cultural divides. The success of a number of the Organization's past activities has been attributed to this world-wide networking capacity, including FAO's direct access to specialised sources of expertise relevant to food and agriculture, the numerous technical cooperation ventures it sponsors, and its wide array of expert panels and advisory bodies and its multi-lingual mode of operation. Growing links with the world of NGOs and civil society organizations, which facilitate outreach of FAO activities beyond government circles, add a further dimension.

Decentralized capabilities

160. Co-existing with FAO's global vocation and networking capacity are its decentralized capabilities. They facilitate and in many cases provide the major justification for implementation of both single country and multi-country activities requested by the membership. The immediate presence at national level (through FAORs) and at sub-regional and regional levels (through the Regional and Sub-regional Offices) is instrumental in ensuring timeliness in responding to requests and relevance to local needs.

Professional and multi-disciplinary staff

161. The professionalism and dedication of a multi-disciplinary and multi-lingual work force, devoted to the cause of multilateralism and bound by the standards of conduct of the International Civil Service, must count as a major comparative advantage. The existence of a wide range of disciplines within the Secretariat (at Headquarters and in the decentralized units) provides continuity of action and a unique resource for normative activities and for support to technical cooperation and investment mobilisation activities.

Capacity to respond to unforeseen needs of Members Nations

162. As a support and adjunct to FAO's Regular Programme activities and its field programmes funded from extra-budgetary sources, the Technical Cooperation Programme provides a valuable mechanism to respond to member countries' immediate and/or unforeseen needs. This, combined with the Organization's contacts with governments and the presence of Permanent Representatives in Rome, enables the Organization to take some immediate action while making efforts to mobilise or leverage resources for further assistance.

Responsible financial and administrative management

163. The Organization has sound and responsible financial and administrative management. Financial and internal controls are highly effective, as is evidenced by the fact that in over 50 years of activity the FAO accounts have always been approved by the External Auditor without qualification and the Organization has avoided any significant financial default.


164. Fundamental to the concept of comparative advantage is the existence of other institutions that can offer similar services. Partnerships with such institutions need to be envisaged proactively in the interest of avoiding duplication and increasing FAO's effective impact by drawing on the capacity of such partners to achieve its strategic objectives.

165. The question of partnership hinges on the reason why FAO, rather than another potential agency, should work to meet any one of the identified needs. To analyze this question presupposes up-to-date and comprehensive knowledge of the comparative advantages, capacities and programmes of other organizations working in the field in question. Effective partnership is predicated on both exchange of information and experience and cooperation, based on a mutually-agreed division of labour, with a wide range of partners. Also, and more importantly , it opens the way for mobilization of the contribution of others to achievement of broad goals which FAO, by itself, could not attain. While much exchange of experience and cooperation already exists, both at the institutional level and at the level of individual technical units, it it expected that implementation of the corporate cross-organizational strategy on Broadening Partnerships and Alliances should reinforce the "culture of cooperation" within the Organization.

166. As a general principle, for the establishment of effective partnerships, FAO must seek to ensure that cooperation addresses specific issues and problems and aims at achieving tangible results, particularly at country level. Cooperative relationships with partners will build on established institutional links and intrinsic complementarities, but will entail different practical modalities and instruments, depending on the context.

UN system organizations

167. In respect of the UN system, a key aspect is follow-up to global conferences and summits, including the World Food Summit, which are shaping the agenda for action by the international community. The system must help countries translate commitments, particularly those taken within the framework of international conventions and follow-up to UNCED into effective and practical measures, building on the potential for synergy inherent in the system. In particular, FAO will need to maintain a proactive role in ensuring a coherent UN system approach to the implementation of the World Food Summit Plan of Action, and participate in other system-wide initiatives from the perspective of food and agriculture issues. Special attention needs to be paid to further strengthening the links among the Rome-based organizations.

International financing institutions

168. FAO can continue to use its multi-disciplinary technical expertise for the generation of investment in food and agriculture, through the fruitful tri-partite relationship it enjoys with the World Bank and other International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and the concerned governments themselves. In the policy advisory area, the Organization must seek to dovetail its sectoral advice with the overall macro-economic assistance provided by these institutions. It may also build on their readiness to establish a broader base of cooperation to support specific national programmes such as agricultural statistics or aquaculture, as evidenced by new memoranda of understanding signed with them at the highest policy level.

Research organizations

169. In pursuing institutional links with the CGIAR, of which it is a co-sponsor along with the World Bank, UNDP and UNEP, FAO can further develop close contact and joint activities with the individual centres themselves, facilitating outreach of the results achieved by research institutions through catalytic action in support of technology transfer, taking maximum account of local conditions. Collaboration with research-oriented organizations will be well served by the presence of the NARS and TAC (and in the future probably the IAEG) Secretariats at FAO, and maximum use can be made of networking modalities.

Intergovernmental organizations

170. A number of other Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs), particularly many regional ones, have interest in agricultural issues and may be actively involved with food and agricultural cooperation programmes. In full recognition of the comparative advantages these Organizations may have in specific regional contexts, FAO must continue to explore avenues for cooperation to maximise complementarities in keeping with its mandate.

Civil society

171. FAO must also continue to adjust to the significant changes which are taking place in the respective roles and responsibilities of the state, the market and civil society. FAO cannot match the capillary outreach of Civil Society Organizations, particularly the farmers' and consumers' organizations and the large number of NGOs active in food and agriculture, down to the level of farming communities themselves. However, it can play a useful catalytic role in mobilizing action at national level, supporting coalitions and fostering exchanges of experience. It will, therefore, need to expand constructive partnerships with non-state actors, building on its long experience and institutional memory in joint practical work, e.g. with rural producers' organizations.

Private sector

172. Links with the private sector should include active dialogue to foster mutual understanding of the potential for cooperation, while respecting each other's characteristics. FAO can marry its extensive field experience and knowledge of the requirements of food and agriculture development with the unique entrepreneurship capacities of private sector agents, for instance by playing an "honest broker" role in increasing private sector investment in agriculture and investments in new technology to bring greater benefit to developing countries.

Implementation Schedule

173. The following table describes the proposed implementation schedule leading up to, and following, approval of the Strategic Framework by the Conference in November 1999:

Document Technical


PC/FC Council Conference
Strategic Framework
Jan to March
May and
Sept 1999
June and
Nov 1999
Nov 1999
(for decision)
Medium Term Plan
Jan and
March 2001
Sept 2000 Nov 2000
(for decision)
Nov 2001
(for information)
Programme of Work and Budget
N/A May and
Sept 2001
June and
Nov 2001
Nov 2001
(for decision)
Programme Implementation Report
Jan to March
Sept 2004 Nov 2004 Nov 2005
(for decision)
Programme Evaluation Report
2005 (covering an approximate period of 1998 to 2003)
N/A May 2005 June 2005 Nov 2005
(for decision)



ACC Administrative Committee on Coordination
AF Administration and Finance Department (FAO)
AFI Information Systems and Technology Division (FAO)
AG Agriculture Department (FAO)
CCA Common Country Assessment
CFS Committee on World Food Security (FAO)
CGIAR Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research
CSO Civil Society Organization
ECOSOC United Nations Economic and Social Council
EMPRES Emergency Prevention System for Transboundary Animal and Plant Pests and Diseases (FAO)
ES Economic and Social Department (FAO)
FAOR FAO Representative
FDI Foreign Direct Investment
FI Fisheries Department (FAO)
FIVIMS Food Insecurity and Vulnerability Information Mapping System
FO Forestry Department (FAO)
GEF Global Environment Facility
GI General Affairs and Information Department (FAO)
GIEWS Global Information and Early Warning System (FAO)
GII Information Division (FAO)
GIL Library and Documentation Systems Division (FAO)
IAEG Impact Assessment and Evaluation Group
ICLARM International Centre for Living Aquatic Resources Management
ICN International Conference on Nutrition
ICRC International Committee for the Red Cross
IFAD International Fund for Agricultural Development
IFI International Financing Institution
ILO International Labour Office
IMF International Monetary Fund
IFPRI International Food Policy Research Institute
IPGRI International Plant Genetic Resources Institute
IPU Inter-Parliamentary Union
NARS National Agricultural Research System
NGO Non-Governmental Organization
ODA Official Development Assistance
OECD Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
SD Sustainable Development Department (FAO)
SPFS Special Programme for Food Security (FAO)
TAC Technical Advisory Committee (CGIAR)
TC Technical Cooperation Department (FAO)
TCA Policy Assistance Division (FAO)
TCO Field Operations Division (FAO)
UNCED United Nations Conference on Environment and Development
UNCTAD United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
UNDAFs United Nations Development Assistance Frameworks
UNDP United Nations Development Programme
UNDRO/IDNDR United Nations Disaster Relief Coordinator/International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction
UNESCO United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
UNEP United Nations Environment Programme
UNFPA United Nations Population Fund
UNHCHR United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
UNICEF United Nations Children's Fund
UNIDO United Nations Industrial Development Organization
UNIFEM United Nations Development Fund for Women
UN/OCHA United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance
USDA United States Department of Agriculture
UTF Unilateral Trust Fund
WAICENT World Agriculture Information Centre (FAO)
WB World Bank
WFP World Food Programme
WFS World Food Summit
WHO World Health Organization
WTO World Trade Organization

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