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Welcome to the UNSCN website


UNSCN is the food and nutrition policy harmonization forum of the United Nations.


The mandate of the UNSCN is to promote cooperation among UN agencies and partner organizations in support of community, national, regional, and international efforts to end malnutrition in all of its forms in this generation. It will do this by refining the direction, increasing the scale and strengthening the coherence and impact of actions against malnutrition world wide, and raise awareness of nutrition problems and mobilize commitment to solve them at global, regional and national levels. Read more

Don't Miss!

Briefing Paper: Impact of climate change on hunger and under-nutrition


Action Contre la Faim (ACF) has recently released a briefing paper on the impact of climate change on hunger and under-nutrition. Even in the most optimistic global warming scenario, the effects of climate change on under-nutrition would be devastating, and would undermine current efforts to reduce hunger and ensure good nutrition. Despite the obvious critical situation and strong interconnection, food and nutrition security is still markedly absent in climate change negotiations. 

ACF calls on climate negotiators, governments and donors to focus their attention on the consequences of climate change on under-nutrition, and commit urgently to help the most vulnerable to adapt to an increasingly unpredictable climate and world. Bold and immediate actions are required to address the causes of climate change and the adverse consequences of climate change on hunger and under-nutrition should be recognized when sealing a crucial international agreement.


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The State of the World’s Children 2014


UNICEF just released their flagship report, The State of the World's Children 2014 in Numbers. The report titled, Every Child Counts: Revealing disparities, advancing children's rights highlights the importance of data in making progress for children and exposing the unequal access to services and protections that mars the lives of so many.

The statistics in the report bear witness to ongoing violations of children's rights. It adds that innovations in data collection, analysis and dissemination are making it possible to disaggregate data by such factors as location, wealth, sex, and ethnic or disability status, to include children who have been excluded or overlooked by broad averages. The report urges increased investment in innovations that right the wrong of exclusion.


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New guidelines for treating severe acute child malnutrition, 2013


19 million children younger than 5 years had severe acute malnutrition (SAM) worldwide in 2011, most of whom lived in Africa and southeast Asia. Furthermore, more than 7% of all deaths in this age group were attributable to this disorder. These shocking numbers-calculated as part of the 2013 Lancet Series on Maternal and Child Nutrition highlight how seriously the global problem of SAM should be taken.

World Health Organization (WHO) has just released new treatment guidelines for severe acute malnutrition in children under-five. Almost 20 million children worldwide have severe acute malnutrition and are considered as the most vulnerable population.

"The guidelines are critical because many national health plans currently overlook children with severe acute malnutrition. This can be fatal. If these children don't get the right medical and nutritional care, very often they die," says Dr Francesco Branca, Director of WHO's Department of Nutrition for Health and Development.



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New Policy Brief: Food, Diet, Nutrition and Non-Communicable Diseases


The World Cancer Research Fund International (WCRF) and the NCD Alliance have launched their new policy brief: Food, Diet, Nutrition and Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs). The brief sets out the key reasons why NCDs should be considered in policies to address global nutritional challenges. It summarises the state-of-the-art-science on the connections between nutrition and NCDs and provides recommendations for priority actions by international agencies, governments, donors and research funders, civil society and researchers.

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Maternal Nutrition in Emergencies


This technical background paper and Report of the Round Table at the European Community Humanitarian Office (DG ECHO) in Brussels on 12 November 2013, summarises current evidence, on what is required to support maternal nutrition in general and where the gaps in knowledge are in addressing maternal undernutrition in emergencies. 

The paper focuses on support for maternal nutrition in its own right (an area that appears to be neglected in current policy and programming), as well as for the objective of improved infant and child survival, growth and development. The paper takes the approach that improving nutritional status can be achieved in a number of ways, not all of which require a change in consumption, and therefore it attempts to review a broad set of nutrition, health and other sector interventions.


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Conference: Building Healthy Global Food Systems: A New imperative for Public Health, 8 – 9 September 2014, Oxford, UK


This upcoming World Public Health Nutrition Association (WPHNA) conference at Keble College, Oxford University, visions to review the status of diet-related ill health, determine the impact that existing global food systems have on health, and then explore policies that could effectively promote health and well-being and support global food systems which are environmentally, culturally and socially sustainable.

Early Bird Registration Deadline: 30 June 2014 (24.00 hrs BST)

Pre-Registration Deadline: 26 August 2014 (17.00 hrs BST)



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The prevention of obesity and NCDs: challenges and opportunities for governments


The International Association for the Study of Obesity (IASO) has recently published a 10-point action plan for governments to tackle obesity. The IASO Policy Briefing comes at a time when there is increasing need to tackle the rising levels of obesity and related non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in virtually all countries of the world.

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Lessons Learned from the Somalia Famine and the Greater Horn of Africa Crisis 2011-2012


Lessons Learned from the Somalia Famine and the Greater Horn of Africa Crisis 2011-2012  - Desk Review of Literature
By Daniel Maxwell, Nisar Majid, Heather Stobaugh, Jeeyon Janet Kim, Jacqueline Lauer, Eliza Paul

On July 20, 2011, the UN declared a famine in South Central Somalia, which killed some 260,000 people (Checchi and Robinson 2013). Though Somalia was the worst affected country, the crisis was region-wide in its impact.  This Desk Review covers the contents of some 180 documents on the crisis that were reviewed in detail, out of a total of over 500 documents initially screened. These include reports, evaluations, assessments, and in some cases, peer-reviewed journal articles and books. Topics covered in the Review include: the history and political economy of aid; political constraints, access and humanitarian space; early warning and response; the impact of the famine; the humanitarian response; community and diaspora responses; emerging or non-traditional humanitarian actors; the role of Al-Shabaab and the post-crisis policy agenda and resilience. The weighting of this review is generally towards Somalia, given the severity of the crisis there, and the overall level of funding for the response. The available litera­ture is much more substantial for Somalia than for the Somali National Regional State (SNRS) in Ethiopia or for Northeastern Kenya. This Review is one output from a study enti­tled, "Lessons Learned from the 2011-2012 Horn Of Africa Crisis," funded in part by the Bill & Me­linda Gates Foundation and in part by the USAID Office of Foreign Assistance (OFDA).

To read the report, click here.


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Vacancy: Vacancy for WHO Coordinator position P5


Title:                   Coordinator

Grade:                P5

Contract type:    Fixed-Term Appointment

Duration of contract: One year renewable, subject to satisfactory performance and continuing need for the post

Application Deadline: 17 September 2014

Duty Station:       Geneva, Switzerland

Organization unit: HQ/NMH NoncommunicableDiseases and Mental Health (HQ/NMH) /HQ/MND Management of NoncommunicableDiseases (HQ/MND)  HQ/CPM Chronic Diseases Prevention and Management

Please visit WHO's e-Recruitment website


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