Background

Despite efforts made at national and international levels to combat hunger and reduce food insecurity, the number of undernourished people in the world remains unacceptably high at close to one billion in 2010. Asia and the Pacific is the region with the highest number of undernourished people (3,5 million), but the proportion remains very high in Sub-Saharan Africa, where 28% of the population still suffers from undernourishment (SOFI 2010).

In order to reverse this trend, it is important to understand how we can make existing global, national and local policies and programmes more effective in terms of their hunger reduction impact. To that end, much greater attention needs to be paid to put in place a more enabling environment for food security, more efficient and effective systems and processes for policy and programme mapping, monitoring and evaluation and the adoption of more effective result-based management approaches in the food security area. It is expected that this will help to improve effectiveness, ensure greater accountability and above all provide a basis for more systematic learning from successes and failures in the combat against hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition.

Rationale

The report of the independent external evaluation of FAO (IEE) issued in 2007 called for a renewed effort to formulate a strategic framework for the Organization which would be integrated with the traditional planning document of the organization, i.e. the Medium Term Plan and the Programme of Work and Budget.

In November 2009, the FAO conference approved a renewed Strategic Framework covering the years 2010-2019, which addresses the 3 Global Goals of FAO Members within the framework of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The Conference also approved a set of 11 Strategic Objectives (SOs), Functional Objectives (FOs) and Core Functions (CFs) of FAO as well as the enabling environment and means of FAO action.

In this context, the Flanders International Cooperation Agency (FICA) on behalf of the Government of Flanders, in line with its activities in support of food security in the Southern Africa area, particularly Malawi, Mozambique and South Africa, has expressed its intention to also provide support to the normative work of the Organization in the area of food security and the fight against hunger on a cross-sectional basis with a focus on Southern Africa.

The activities to be supported by FICA as proposed in this note will build on the resources, tools and techniques developed by FAO and will contribute to achieving results as spelled out in FAO’s Strategic Framework and more in particular within the Strategic Objective (H) on Improving food security and Nutrition and the Organizational Result 1 (H01OR1) on: “Countries and other stakeholders have strengthened capacity to formulate, implement and monitor coherent policies, strategies and programmes that address the root causes of hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition.”

Funded by the