Water for Food

Experts highlight the power of local lessons to help feed the world

“Water for Food Security: From Local Lessons to Global Impacts” April 10-12, 2017 Nebraska Innovation Campus Lincoln, Nebraska, USA
Registration for the 2017 Water for Food Global Conference ends April 1

March 27, 2017

Lincoln, Neb. — The 2017 Water for Food Global Conference will welcome a record 100 speakers and global experts to share ideas and help find solutions to the world’s pressing water and food security needs.

The flagship event of the Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute at the University of Nebraska, held in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Drought Mitigation Center, will be April 10-12 at Nebraska Innovation Campus in Lincoln, Nebraska, USA. More information, including the speaker list, agenda and registration details, are available on the conference website: http://waterforfood.nebraska.edu/2017wfc.

Researchers, practitioners, policymakers, farmers, faculty, students, thought leaders and industry experts will explore “Water for Food Security: From Local Lessons to Global Impacts,” a theme inspired by the notion that global breakthroughs come from local action. Participants can expect three full days of learning and networking.

“We are energized to bring together such a dynamic and diverse group of speakers and experts to the University of Nebraska,” said Peter McCornick, executive director. “This year’s conference will push us further toward finding real-world solutions — locally and globally — to the complex challenge of ensuring water and food security.”

Joining Heuermann Lecture and closing plenary speaker Arthur Gen “A.G.” Kawamura, former California Secretary of Agriculture, are:

  • Ann M. Bartuska, Acting Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics, U.S. Department of Agriculture; Washington, D.C.
  • Robert Bertram, chief scientist, Bureau for Food Security, U.S. Agency for International Development; Washington, D.C.
  • Mbogo Futakamba, Ministry of Water and Irrigation; Tanzania
  • Chandra Madramootoo, James McGill Professor, Bioresource Engineering Department, Faculty of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, McGill University; Quebec, Canada
  • Sithembile Ndema Mwamakamba, Climate Smart Agriculture Program Manager; Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network; Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Timothy Prewitt, CEO, iDE; Denver, Colorado
  • Jeff Raikes, co-founder, Raikes Foundation; Board Chair, Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute; Seattle, Washington
  • Brian Richter, director, Global Freshwater Strategies, Nature Conservancy; Crozet, Virginia
  • Steven Schonberger, practice manager for Middle East and North Africa Region and global lead for Water in Agriculture, Water Global Practice, World Bank; Washington, D.C.
  • Timothy Williams, director for Africa, International Water Management Institute; Accra; Ghana

Topics include:

  • Creating and expanding farmer-led irrigation solutions in sub-Saharan Africa
  • Developing market-based approaches to drought management
  • Enhancing high productivity irrigated agriculture, highlighting challenges and opportunities from the Great Plains to sub-Saharan Africa
  • Improving water management and governance for food security in great river basins of the world
  • Transforming water policy to develop sustainable and equitable water management practices in local regions around the world
  • Understanding the view from the field — how farmers from different parts of the world are using technology and best practices to increase yields
  • Engaging students, stakeholders and future leaders through science literacy and citizen science to examine the relationships between water, food and energy, as well as agriculture and public health.

Regular registration is $550 and will close after April 1. Special registration discounts are available to all academic faculty, staff and students. For assistance with registration, please contact Amber Poythress at apoythress@nebraska.edu or (+1) 402.472.5175.

In addition to the rich variety of programming, the event includes two evening receptions with live music and globally inspired food; Nebraska bar-be-que dinner at Roca Berry Farm; student poster competition; photography competition and exhibit and multimedia artwork by students and professionals.

The 2017 Water for Food Global Conference is a North American Regional Event for the 8th World Water Forum, the world’s largest water-related forum organized by the World Water Council.

Generous support for the 2017 conference is provided by the Robert. B. Daugherty Foundation, the University of Nebraska, Monsanto Co., Senninger Irrigation Inc., the Nebraska Corn Board and LI-COR Biosciences. Media partners include the Water Network and AgWired.


The Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute at the University of Nebraska was founded in 2010 by the Robert B. Daugherty Foundation to address the global challenge of achieving food security with less stress on water resources through improved water management in agricultural and food systems. We are committed to ensuring a water and food secure world while maintaining the use of water for other human and environmental needs.

The University of Nebraska has invested in four interdisciplinary, university-wide institutes — including the Water for Food Global Institute — that leverage talent and research-based expertise from across the University of Nebraska system to focus on complex state, national and global challenges. Learn more at waterforfood.nebraska.edu.

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