Thank you again to all the contributors for the valuable input. The feedback received is clearly based on a wealth of experiences that contributors have gathered around the world, providing different perspectives on the theme of migration, agriculture, and rural development.
Some of the issues raised are very much in line with FAO’s approach to rural development as a way of providing a choice to people living in rural areas, on whether to migrate or not. This year’s State of Food and Agriculture (SOFA), launched on October 9th, focused on territorial approaches to rural development, and the role of the food system in lifting people out of poverty in rural areas. Based on contributors’ comments, for SOFA 2018 we will try to build on this territorial approach and link it more directly to the drivers and impacts of rural migration. Another aspect that emerged from the discussion is the role of urban areas in providing employment, services and amenities. The report will try to capture the differentials between rural and urban areas as drivers of migration and policy implications.
We also received contributions highlighting work of which we were not aware, or pointing in directions that we had not considered. For example, the issue of migrant fishers is one that was not part of our initial outline, but one that we believe should be included. Another aspect to be considered is the health and nutritional status of both migrants and those left behind.
In the coming months we will be collecting further information and produce a report that is evidence-based, and hopefully provide new policy-relevant insights on the topic. Thank you to all of you for indicating ongoing empirical work of relevance to the publication, and the broader literature on migration dynamics, demography, and gender-related migration issues. The dialogue and input provided was very helpful in providing guidance to our team. I particularly appreciated the time taken by contributors on how to improve the report structure and provide a clearer rationale for the document.
The 2018 edition of the State of Food and Agriculture is scheduled to be launched in mid-September 2018. This leaves only a few months to prepare the report since we have to allow time for translation in the other 5 official UN languages and for the production process. In the coming days we will be receiving commissioned background papers on country case studies that we hope will enrich the report with different regional perspectives. We will also be incorporating your suggestions on the outline and exploring some of the information resources that emerged in the forum.
A big thank you to all who participated in this Forum!