Research fellow leads successful global networking meeting on urban food

23 November 2017

Valencia Food Conference

Dr Ana Moragues Faus convened a meeting of city networks in the Milan Food Policy Pact conference in Valencia in October.

As part of the annual Mayors’ Summit of the Milan Food Policy Pact, Ana brought together 48 delegates representing networks where more than 500 cities are actively working to reform their food system. Ana explains: “Cities are the beacons of food policy innovation and they are establishing alliances to transform our food system. The main goal of the meeting was to exchange current practices and establish links between these growing city and city-region food networks. We considered two key questions: how can we ensure the long-term growth, impact and sustainability of city and city-region food initiatives, and what would be of most value to our networks in the context of growing international activity?”

This was the first time that national, regional and global networks gathered to discuss how they can coordinate and effectively support a transition towards more sustainable and just urban food futures worldwide.

Participants agreed a number of key action points at the meeting, many around improved information sharing about existing city-networks and their activities, collaborative participation in the Milan Food Policy Pact consultation and a call to populate the Urban Food Action Platform as a means of sharing good practice. They also discussed potential spaces to meet again and work together to influence the food policy agenda such as spaces related to the implementation of the United Nations New Urban Agenda or the Committee on World Food Security.

Ana concludes: “This was the first meeting of its kind and I’m delighted at how well it went. Everyone was really engaged and the presentations from colleagues provided a really useful insight into how city food networks operate. I very much look forward to fostering further collaboration between networks and strengthen these urban food alliances to deliver good food for all globally.”

Since returning from Valencia Ana has visited the Center for a Livable Future at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore and the Urban Food Policy Institute at City University New York to foster collaboration between leading international institutions working on food security. In December she has been invited to be part of a panel on urban food in the International Conference on Global Food Security in Cape Town.

Ana Moragues Faus is a Research Fellow in the School of Geography and Planning and the Sustainable Places Institute at Cardiff University. In 2017 she was awarded a prestigious Sêr Cymru Fellowship –funded by European Regional Development Fund and Welsh Government -  one of only a few given out to support applied social science.

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