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BAM-E-DUNYA WEBINAR SERIES | EPISODE II
10 December 2020
Food and nutrition security is a top priority in the countries sharing the Hindu Kush Karakoram Pamir Landscape (HKPL) – Afghanistan, China, Pakistan, and Tajikistan. In recent years, the governments of Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Afghanistan have endorsed a number of policy initiatives and made several efforts to ensure food and nutrition security. Moreover, civil society organizations such as the AKF have been working with the governments to address these challenges. However, despite national-level commitments and efforts, mountain communities in the landscape are still lagging behind in agricultural production and in making progress towards ending all forms of hunger.
Pervasive poverty, harsh and erratic climatic conditions compounded by difficult mountain terrains, poor market connectivity, declining agrobiodiversity and agricultural productivity, limited scientific research, and socioeconomic changes are posing serious challenges to sustainable food production and consumption among mountain communities in the HKPL. The rising impacts of climate change on the landscape’s fragile ecosystems and local natural resource-based economies have further worsened food and nutrition insecurity. Moreover, women’s roles and workload in agriculture are gradually increasing (but without commensurate rewards) due to a waning interest in agriculture and the outmigration of men.
In the HKPL, agriculture and livestock are critical to food and nutrition security and livelihoods. Lack of reliable water supply in the traditional micro-irrigation systems (locally known as kuhl or gole) and water-related extreme weather events (such as floods and glacial lake outburst floods) are impacting agricultural land and productivity. Moreover, inadequate supply of clean energy and related technologies are among the key factors resulting in lower income of farmers and increasing burden on women.
To further understand the food systems, related challenges and strategies, and food–water–energy nexus in the HKPL, ICIMOD and AKF are jointly organizing a webinar, the second in the “Bam-e-Dunya webinar series: Unleashing the potential of transboundary cooperation for a healthy and resilient roof of the world”.
The webinar aims to unfold and highlight the dynamics of food systems, related challenges and opportunities, and will suggest a way forward to ensuring food and nutrition security in the landscape. The webinar will feature experts with diverse experiences on food and nutrition security in the HKPL and similar landscapes in other regions.
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Golam Rasul is the chief economist at ICIMOD. He provides intellectual leadership in the areas of economics and rural development with special attention on regional cooperation, poverty alleviation, sustainable development goals, the food–water–energy nexus and environmental management. Rasul holds a doctorate degree in regional and rural development planning from the Asian Institute of Technology, Thailand. He has authored over 150 publications in reputed international journals. He also worked as a coordinating lead author of the chapter on High Mountain in the IPCC Special Report on Ocean and Cryosphere.
Food Security Economist
Abid Hussain is currently working as Food Security Economist at ICIMOD. He supervises a group on socioeconomics and research methods within ICIMODʼs Livelihoods Theme. His research and policy work focuses on mountain agriculture, food and nutrition security, agrobiodiversity, rural credit, and climate change adaptation. He has around 16 years of experience in research, development, and policy processes. He also served at management positions in financial sector and as a faculty member in the economics department of two public sector universities in Pakistan: University of Haripur, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi. Hussain has published book chapters and technical reports as well as several articles in peer-reviewed international journals. He is also a member of the editorial board of two journals – Humanities and Social Sciences Communications – Nature and PLOS ONE.
Nicholas McKinlay provides strategic direction for AKF’s global programme, including programme communications and partnerships with foundations. He has worked for AKF in the UK, as AKF’s CEO in India and in Portugal, and led AKF’s global civil society portfolio. McKinlay has worked with social services, refugees, technology, media and communications fields in senior management. He holds an undergraduate degree in Human Psychology and Social Policy and a postgraduate degree in Business Administration from the University of Liverpool. He has completed advanced management and leadership courses at Babson College, the Indian Institute of Management, and Harvard Kennedy School.
Program Coordinator, Central Asia Stunting Initiative (CASI), AKF
Aminah Jahangir Rajput is a public health and policy specialist with over 12 years of work experience in policy making, capacity building, and monitoring and evaluation of health and nutrition programmes. She has worked across diverse service tracers ranging from social health protection and health system strengthening to child health and nutrition and community, global, and digital health. She has successfully led the design and implementation of programmes and research projects and advocated for multi-country projects funded by donors like DFID, British Council, UNGEI, GAC, ECHO, and KFW.
National Lead, Agriculture and Food Security
Melad ul Karim works as the National Lead for Agriculture and Food Security at AKF Afghanistan. With a post-graduate degree in agriculture, he has over 20 yearsʼ experience in designing and implementing projects on agriculture, food security, natural resource management, pro-poor value chain development, climate change adaptation, and community resilience building. More specifically, his work focuses on high value agriculture, seed sector development, mountain food and nutrition security, rural livelihoods, community infrastructure development, WASH, renewable energy, and access to finance. Karim has experience leading teams and collaborating with international development organizations on projects in fragile regions often affected by natural or anthropogenic disasters.
Nutritionist and Gender Focal Person, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
Nomeena Anis has over 14 years of experience in public health and food and nutrition. Her key areas of interest lie in devising policies, programmes, guidelines, and action plans for strengthening health and food systems, nutrition, and human capital development. Prior to joining FAO, she worked at the Ministry of Health, Government of Pakistan, from 2002 to 2011. Anis is a PhD scholar on food and nutrition from Allama Iqbal Open University, Pakistan.