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Food for the cities programme

Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Germany

The German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture is a primary partner of FAO’s Food for the Cities Programme. It provides financial support for projects in city regions in Sri Lanka and Zambia.

International partner

RUAF Foundation

The RUAF Foundation is the main partner of FAO’s Food for the Cities Programme in developing a common vision on the City Region Food Systems approach. The RUAF Foundation is a global network with centres in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America and Europe. It is a leading centre of expertise in the field of (intra- and peri-) urban agriculture and city region food strategies. They have implemented projects in city regions in Canada, the Netherlands and Ecuador with the financial support of the Daniel and Nina Carasso Foundation.

Local partners

Institutional partners

Colombo Municipal Council

Colombo Municipal Council is the largest Local Authority in Sri Lanka and one of the oldest in South Asia. Established in 1865, it has grown into a large organization catering to the needs of a resident population of 647,100 (2001 census) and a floating population of nearly 500,000.

Lusaka City Council

Lusaka City Council is heading the capital city of Zambia, answering to the needs of 2.5 million inhabitants. It seeks to become among the best managed and accountable councils through the provision of efficient and effective services, participatory approaches and sustainable use of resources.

Kitwe City Council

Kitwe City Council is meeting the needs of Zambia's third largest city (strict resident population 522,092, but real population catchment 700,000 (2010 census)). Its mission is to improve the quality of life of Kitwe’s residents through the development of a sustainable economy, protecting the environment and providing access to quality, affordable social services and infrastructure, involving the active participation of all stakeholders.

Alcadía de Medellín

Alcadía de Medellín is the main local authority of Colombia's second largest city. It is meeting the needs of 2.2 million dwellers (2005 census). It is highly active and is seeking to offer the best services to its inhabitants, from education to food markets, through innovative urban and social initiatives.

Technical partners

International Water Management Institute

The International Water Management Institute (IWMI) is a non-profit, scientific research organization focusing on the sustainable use of water and land resources in developing countries. It is a member of the CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future. IWMI is headquartered in Colombo, Sri Lanka, with regional offices across Asia and Africa. IWMI works in partnership with governments, civil society and the private sector. It aims to provide evidence-based solutions to sustainably manage water and land resources for improving food security, people’s livelihoods and the environment.

University of Zambia

The University of Zambia (UNZA), based in the capital city of Lusaka, is a world-class African university with a strong record of research activities. UNZA holds experience and capacities on food systems sustainability, and environmental and natural resources management.
The University’s School of Natural Sciences has put together a multi-disciplinary local team to help conduct an assessment of the city region food system and facilitate dialogue among key stakeholders.

The Copperbelt University

The Copperbelt University, located in the northern Zambian town of Kitwe, has established partnerships and collaborative agreements with a number of recognized universities and international organizations, such as UNDP and UNESCO. The University has a clearly defined research policy that considers the generation of new knowledge a ‘major component of academic work’ and therefore provides added value to the development and implementation of the assessment methodology for Kitwe’s city region food system.

African Centre for Cities

The African Centre for Cities (ACC) is an interdisciplinary research programme focusing on the dynamics of unsustainable urbanization processes in Africa. The ACC seeks to facilitate critical urban research and policy analysis to promote vibrant, democratic and sustainable urban development. Through its “Consuming urban poverty” project, the ACC is partnering with representatives from the African academic sector to better understand the connections between poverty, governance, urban space and food in several African cities, including Kitwe, Zambia.

Other donors and partners

Belgian Development Cooperation

The Belgian Development Cooperation's priority objective is sustainable human development, mainly achieved by launching projects to reduce poverty, through local partnership processes. Belgium provides financial support to FAO's Food for the Cities Programme in Colombia. It provides funding for the project in the city region of Medellín.

Wilfrid Laurier University- Laurier Centre for Sustainable Food Systems

The Laurier Centre for Sustainable Food Systems addresses interconnected environmental, social and economic challenges facing the global food system. It brings together researchers from across the university studying food systems in various fields, including geography and environment, biology, psychology, business and economics.

The CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems (WLE)

Rural-Urban Linkages (RUL) Research Theme addresses these interlinked challenges from a landscapes and territorial perspective, assessing the performance of city region food systems and of urban and peri-urban agriculture, analyzing climate vulnerability, sustainability dimensions, resource competition and environmental degradation, while identifying innovative ways to turn challenges into policies, strategies and business opportunities, for food production and jobs in the food system and  instance by closing water and nutrient loops.