Implementing Nutrition-Sensitive Development: Reaching Consensus
The Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement is an unprecedented, multi-stakeholder global effort to improve maternal and child nutrition. Both the 2008 Lancet Series on Maternal and Child Undernutrition and SUN Framework for Action underscore the importance of both nutrition-specific and nutritionsensitive interventions. Thanks to a large evidence base, nutrition-specific interventions are well-defined. They include treating acute malnutrition, increasing micronutrient intake, and promoting exclusive breastfeeding, addressing the immediate causes of undernutrition. Nutrition-sensitive development addresses the underlying factors that contribute to malnutrition— including hunger, poverty, gender inequality, and poor access to safe water and health services— by integrating nutrition actions into other sectors. Unlike nutrition-specific interventions, nutrition-sensitive development lacks a common definition, which is needed for aligning efforts and measuring impact. More research and documentation of proven approaches to integrating nutrition- sensitive actions into multisectoral programs will build the evidence base. This policy brief seeks to contribute to a wider conversation that we hope will lead to some consensus.