Sustainable food cities
6 April 2016
Measuring progress towards sustainable food cities: sustainability and food security indicators.
To strengthen work with cities and measure the positive impact of creating sustainable food systems, the School of Geography and Planning is collaborating with the Sustainable Food Cities Network. The project, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), is enabling Cardiff University academics and the Network to develop a set of indicators to inform city governments and communities as they strive to drive change in the food system at a time of austerity.
The action-based research project launched in September 2015 focuses on the input from grassroots stakeholders from around the UK, having conducted workshops in Cardiff, London, Edinburgh and Liverpool.
Food security and environmental, economic and social sustainability are at the forefront of current political agendas, which are increasingly stressing the need to strengthen the links between food, health, and environmental research. The Sustainable Food Cities Network is helping people and places share challenges, explore practical solutions and develop best practice on key food issues.
Speaking about her work with the network Dr Ana Moragues said: “An interdisciplinary and multi-stakeholder approach is essential when examining food systems. For that purpose, the project has developed around a series of workshops to define what constitutes success from a practitioner perspective, trying to answer what a sustainable food city actually looks like. From this point, we are trying to ground this vision by selecting the most relevant indicators to guide action towards more sustainable and fair food systems. This exercise is key for providing with evidence to inform decision-makers and policy-makers but also to reflect upon the work urban food partnerships are already conducting and devise how to improve their performance and demonstrate their overall impact on the city”
The Sustainable Food Cities Network involves developing a cross-sector partnership of local public agencies, businesses, academics and NGOs committed to working together to make healthy and sustainable food a defining characteristic of where they live. You can find out more about the network and the indicators work in the following link: http://sustainablefoodcities.org/getstarted/developingindicators