IFSI coordinates many activities that help us investigate and address food security. We link capacity in ACES with other resources of the University of Illinois, cooperate with industry and institutional partners here and abroad, and magnify the impact of discoveries through domestic and international outreach and capacity building.
Through these activities we are able to implement a four-pronged approach to achieving food security:
Innovate: Coordinating research efforts with partners around the world, we work to identify solutions to the complex causes of poverty and food insecurity. This includes efforts such as improved crop varieties and practical equipment implementation for smallholder farmers.
Empower: Building the capacity of individuals and institutions ensures our programs enable people from some of the world’s least food secure regions to find solutions that work in their contexts. For example, rural extension and advisory service systems in Africa and Asia have been enhanced by work of AgReach, based in the College of ACES.
Educate: Working with partners, we to inform the public and the scientific and policy communities about problems and progress in the struggle for food security. This is accomplished through several channels, including lectures, seminars, publications, and educational curricula. Our Distinguished International Lecture series brings global leaders in food security to local audiences.
Evaluate: Performing rigorous evaluations of efforts to improve food security is a key to progress. For example, our scholars assess the effectiveness of domestic and international food security initiatives such as animal donation in Zambia and food assistance in the U.S.