High food and energy prices combined with the challenges of climate change have caused serious disruptions in the global economy—at an especially high cost to the world’s poorest people. IFPRI’s research on global change explores policies, institutions, and investments for smallholders to increase resilience and adapt to global economic and environmental changes.
Key Research and Outcomes from 2011
Technological change is a major driver of growth in agricultural productivity. In 2011, IFPRI’s HarvestChoice program, which is co-implemented by the University of Minnesota, continued to help guide agricultural investments in Sub-Saharan Africa with analytical tools, including a newly released cutting-edge interface that explores spatial data using both pre-generated and dynamic maps of modeling results. In addition, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation used evidence from HarvestChoice on investing in agricultural research and development in their own agricultural development strategy.
In December 2011, IFPRI researchers and leading scientists from Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa (BRICS), Indonesia, and the United States issued a statement to the 2011 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change negotiators on how to best fight hunger in a changing climate. Presented in an IFPRI publication, it outlines recommendations for a work program to strengthen public-sector agricultural research in 12 priority areas, including pests and diseases, irrigation, ruminant agriculture, biotechnology, grain quality, and land use, among others, in addition to improving the quality, quantity, and accessibility of spatial data.