Delivering Food Security on Limited Land (DEVIL)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Aberdeen
Department Name: Inst of Biological and Environmental Sci

Abstract

We will examine the challenge of delivering food security now and in the future on limited area, which will entail examining feedback interactions between land use change and food security dynamics. We will use the high resolution, spatially disaggregated global models and databases of soils, land-use, crops and livestock, developed by consortium partners as the basis for the analysis. We will use the global FEEDME model, informed by FAO statistics and nutritional demand, to derive country level dietary demands for food products. We will develop and use a country-level agent based model, that includes economic and sociopolitical constraints on food production and trade between countries, to satisfy the demand for food either locally, or through trade (constrained by international trade statistics), given the soil, crop and livestock resources available. Performance of the modeling system will be tested against current statistics on food (in)security, and spatial data on hotspots of land use change. The system will be considered adequate if it is able to replicate the current status. Once evaluated, the modeling system will be used to examine a range of scenarios including a) production side measures to improve food security, through: i) sustainable intensification (closing the yield gap; improving livestock), ii) redistribution and trade, and b) demand side measures through i) changing diets, ii) reduced waste (pre- and post-harvest). The feedback interactions between these drivers of change and land use, and the feedback to food supply will be examined globally. Additional regional analysis will examine impacts on food security, land use change and selected ecosystem services in three regions that are key for food security and land use change: South Asia, sub-Saharan Africa and South America. We anticipate that this work will yield high impact papers and information critical to policy makers, industry and other stakeholders. The project will contribute to Future Earth, CCAFS, the Global Land Project and the Programme for Ecosystem Change and Society.

Planned Impact

Methods for engaging with users and exchanging / disseminating data / knowledge / skills: There are five main mechanisms for knowledge and skill exchange, participatory project development, and data dissemination: 1) stakeholder meetings with high level stakeholder group (mainly policy makers, influencers and food chain decision makers), 2) regional stakeholder meetings in South Asia, South America and sub-Saharan Africa with regional stakeholders from production, extension, processing and retail (mainly farm management, best land practices, regional impacts, food processing industry and retailers); 3) provision of extension materials in the appropriate languages to support KE in Asia, South America and Africa; 4) dedicated Summer Schools for Under- and Post-Graduate students and stakeholders from partner institutes and impact study regions; 5) website including links to data and model repository (including meta-data to describe what is available) and all support materials, which will include computer access to data / models and cell-phone web-access to all support materials (more detail below). Identifying the relevant regional stakeholders will be done in close collaboration with the project partners working in South Asia, South America and Africa, but also via the networks already present within the consortium towards policy, industry and NGOs. Summer Schools will be announced internationally, via dedicated list-servers and webpages. Selection of participants will be based on a variety of criteria, including existing expertise, motivation, balanced representation of country of origin, gender and occupation within the world food system. Since food security demands a trans-disciplinary approach to achieve capacity building for viable solutions, stakeholder engagement will be at the core of both Summer Schools. Summer School programs will include lectures, workshops, computer labs, field trips, visits to extension services and companies, link to NGOs and policy, depending on the locations (which will be decided early in the project), and allow ample time for discussions, group work and networking among the participants. Thus, this project aims to build the capacity of the next generation of decision makers who can provide leadership in all issues related to sustainable intensification and food security. An Alumni community will be developed, following the example at the WFSC.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description New agent based modelling framework developed - coupled with state-of-the-art spatial datasets on production, trade, GHG emissions, water and land use. Final papers in preparation for submission to high impact journal to complement the 97 publications arising from this project
Exploitation Route Datasets have been made available for others to use in future analysis. Final synthesis paper still in development.
Sectors Agriculture, Food and Drink,Environment

URL https://deliveringfoodsecurity.org/
 
Description Stakeholder engagement events in South Africa in 2017 and in Brazil in October 2018. The DEVIL project was featured in the 10 year anniversary conference of FACCE-JPI (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iev_fbbqP_Y&list=PLtgyZ0PvgvO-24FStUbSOTmAauDR96Ieg?dex=3) using a co-developed animated film.
First Year Of Impact 2017
Sector Agriculture, Food and Drink,Environment
Impact Types Societal

 
Title Projections of water scarcity in croplands, 2050 
Description Projections of global changes in water scarcity with the current extent of croplands were combined to identify the potential country level vulnerabilities of cropland land to water scarcity in 2050. The data relate to an analysis of the impact changes in water availability will have on cropland availability in 2050. 
Type Of Material Database/Collection of data 
Year Produced 2019 
Provided To Others? Yes  
 
Description Consumerism and Climate Change: How the Choices You Make Can Help Mitigate the Effects of Climate Change 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Article published as part of the UNAI Food Security and Climate Change series
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://academicimpact.un.org/content/consumerism-and-climate-change-how-choices-you-make-can-help-m...
 
Description Environment Reports: Food Matters 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Published by the Institute on the Environment at the University of Minnesota, Environment Reports is a collaboration between an international group of scientists, writers, and designers to combine incisive narratives about environmental challenges, backed up by cutting-edge data. The website to targeted at educators, a business leader, a policymaker, or an engaged citizen and Food Matters provides a powerful means to understand and communicate environmental problems and solutions.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017
URL http://www.environmentreports.com/about/
 
Description FACCE-JPI 10 year anniversary conference - featured project 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact FACCE-JPI 10 year anniversary conference - featured project - the conference was recorded and is available on the FACCE-JPI Youtube Channel (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iev_fbbqP_Y&list=PLtgyZ0PvgvO-24FStUbSOTmAauDR96Ieg?dex=3&t=5s)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iev_fbbqP_Y&list=PLtgyZ0PvgvO-24FStUbSOTmAauDR96Ieg&index=3&t=5s
 
Description Food Systems in Transition: summer school in Africa 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact World Food Systems Center, based in ETH zurich, Executive Director Michelle Grant and Education Manager Jonna Cohen put together and intensive two-week program guiding the participants along the food value chain and offering numerous possibilities to interact with food system stakeholders and experts. DEVIL researchers Nina Buchmann, Bob Scholes and Luciana Soler were among the many contributors. Follow up schools are planned for Brazil in 2018/2019
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://deliveringfoodsecurity.org/news/2017/11/20/successful-summer-school-in-south-africa
 
Description Grazed and Confused? How much can grazing livestock help to mitigate climate change? 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Food Climate Research Network (FCRN). 2018. Grazed and Confused? How much can grazing livestock help to mitigate climate change?
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014,2018
URL https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nub7pToY3jU&feature=youtu.be
 
Description How Supply Chain Innovation Can Contribute to Sustainability 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact West, PC. 2017. Panelist for Institute for Food Technologies' "How Supply Chain Innovation Can Contribute to Sustainability" virtual meeting. December 14, 2017
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Promoting soil health to ensure global food and nutrition security. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Elias, P, G Truitt Nakata, PC West, J Seale. 2018. Panel discussion: Promoting soil health to ensure global food and nutrition security. Moderated by R Thurow. FAO Liaison Office for North America, Washinton, DC. November 28, 2018.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Story Map of the Month "Diverse Farms, Diverse Foods" June 1, 2017 by Peder Engstrom and the University of Minnesota team. 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The story map related to the Food Matters report entitled "Small Farms: Stewards of Global Nutrition?" is featured as ESRI's "Story Map of the Month" in June. The report and the story map highlight the key findings of a study by Mario Herrero with contributions of Co-PIs James Gerber and Paul West.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://umn.maps.arcgis.com/apps/Cascade/index.html?appid=a48c26df4577490ba8b92d410df2e1fd
 
Description Sustainable Food Production in a Changing Climate: Causes and Effects. Webinar lecture to climate change and agriculture class 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact West, PC. 2018. Sustainable Food Production in a Changing Climate: Causes and Effects. Webinar lecture to climate change and agriculture class, University of Galway. Galway, Ireland. March 28, 2018.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description Sustainably feeding a growing population on a warming planet. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Third sector organisations
Results and Impact West, PC. 2018. Sustainably feeding a growing population on a warming planet. Montana Institute on Ecosystems Distinguished Visiting Lecture Series. Montana State University. Boseman, MT. September 26, 2018.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
 
Description The Intimate Relationship between Food Security and Land 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Article published as part of the UNAI 'Food Security and Climate Change' series.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://academicimpact.un.org/content/intimate-relationship-between-food-security-and-land