The 2017 Water for Food Global Conference was held April 10-12 at Nebraska Innovation Campus in Lincoln, Nebraska, USA. The three-day event brought together global leaders in water for food and offered a range of presentations to the 400 participants, representing academic researchers, NGO and business leaders and farmers. Presentations and discussions focused on major aspects of the conference theme: “Water for Food Security: From Local Lessons to Global Impacts.” More than 100 speakers and panelists shared case studies and perspectives on pressing global water and food security challenges, including innovations in sustainable irrigation in Africa, governance of major river basins and groundwater, new technologies to improve water use and more.
This year’s conference was inspired by the idea that global breakthroughs come from local action. Through this lens, the conference sessions shed light on common challenges to improving water and food security in different contexts and scales, addressing policy development, socio-economic dynamics, public-private partnerships, financing, technological innovations, sustainability and environmental stewardship. Specific topics covered include, among others:
- 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
Key conference partners included the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Environmental Defense Fund, U.S. Agency for International Development, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, International Water Management Institute, International Food Policy Research Institute, the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and others.
Together, we are taking the conversation to the next level in regards to leveraging local lessons to improve global water andfood security. Below is a list of post-event resources we hope you will find helpful.
View the program, including the schedule and list of speakers.
Read the full report on the conference discussions
Videos of the sessions are available now on our YouTube channel.
PDFs of the conference PowerPoint presentations are available upon request. Please contact Amber Poythress for assistance.
View the results from our participant survey here.
Mapping Ecosystem Markets
Christopher Hartley, Deputy Director and Senior Environmental Markets Analyst, Office of Environmental Markets, U.S. Department of Agriculture; Washington, D.C. (April 8, 2017)
Groundwater governance –A pathway to sustaining the benefits of groundwater and its contribution to food security
Mohamed Bazza, Senior Water Resources Officer, Land and Water Division, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; Italy (April 4, 2017)
2017 #Water4Food is a wrap
AgWired.com (April 13, 2017)
Jeff Raikes honored at Water for Food
AgWired.com (April 14, 2017)
Kawamura: 'Successful agriculture sustains civilization'
IANR Media (April 14, 2017)
Water for Food improving sub-Saharan security
AgWired.com (April 13, 2017)
Global water, food perspectives descend on Lincoln
Lincoln Journal Star (April 12, 2017)
Raikes: Water and food security are pressing global issues
Brownfield Ag News (April 11, 2017)
View social media highlights on during conference.
Watch the media conference courtesy of AgWired.