#5 Smallholder agriculture and the future of global food & nutrition security

Thursday 9 October 2014
5.00 - 6.30pm

This event has passed


Level 6, Charles Perkins Centre


How do we ensure that smallholders are part of the solution for feeding the world’s people?

In association with Sydney Ideas

At a global level, the people who produce most of the world’s food – smallholder farmers – are also the people who suffer the most food and nutrition insecurity. Why is this so? And what needs to happen to make smallholder agriculture more nutrition-sensitive? In this seminar, three University of Sydney experts from different areas – public health, veterinary science and human geography – review the problem of food and nutrition insecurity among smallholder communities of the developing world.

Chair: Alana Mann, Department of Media and Communications


Robyn Alders, Faculty of Veterinary Science
Fyfe Strachan, Oxfam Australia

Alana Mann teaches media studies, public opinion and international relations in the BA(MECO), Masters of Strategic Public Relations and Bachelor of International and Global Studies. The focus of her research is political communication, specifically the engagement of non-state actors in international politics. She applies an interdisciplinary approach with a strong focus on democracy, social justice and citizenship that is reflected in her focus on the power relations between the media, governments, institutions and civil society actors in the field of food politics.

Her book Global Activism in Food Politics: Power Shift (2014) draws on grounded case studies of agrarian movements in countries including Chile, Mexico and Spain to theorise a diversity of counter-movement organising strategies and political alliances.

Dr Mann is a member of the University of Sydney Environment Institute (SEI) project node ‘Food, People and the Planet’ and also the global food security and nutrition node within the Charles Perkins Centre.

Her latest research project focuses on how competing discourses about food security within and between Australia and its trading partner nations inform policy-making, with the aim of evaluating how new models of inclusive governance are facilitating the emergence of alternative paradigms regarding the treatment of global hunger, poverty and malnutrition.

Robyn Alders is an Associate Professor with the Faculty of Veterinary Science and the Charles Perkins Centre within the University of Sydney and a Director of the KYEEMA Foundation.  For over 20 years, she has worked closely with smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa and SE Asia as a veterinarian, researcher and colleague, with an emphasis on the development of sustainable infectious disease control in animals in rural areas in support of food security and poverty alleviation.  Robyn’s current research and development interests include food and nutrition security, One Health, gender equity and Science Communication.

In January 2011, Robyn was made an Officer of the Order of Australia for distinguished service to veterinary science as a researcher and educator, to the maintenance of food security in developing countries through livestock management and disease control programs.

Fyfe Strachan is the Food Justice Program Coordinator at Oxfam Australia, a role which focuses on supporting Oxfam country teams in their public engagement work on food and livelihoods, and facilitating communication across Oxfam Australia on food justice issues and the GROW campaign. Oxfam’s GROW campaign focuses on the drivers of injustice in the global food system, including the need for greater national and international recognition of the important role of small-scale food producers.  Prior to working at Oxfam, Fyfe worked in Ghana for a human rights advocacy organisation, and in Australia as a policy officer in State and Federal governments.

This event has now passed but you can listen to a podcast of Alana Mann, Robyn Alders ad Fyfe Strachan’s talks bellow: