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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

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Vacancy: Senior Officer (UNSCN Secretariat), P-5

The UNSCN Secretariat moves to FAO Headquarters in Rome. FAO is therefore looking for a Senior Officer responsible for the implementation of the duties assigned to the UNSCN Secretariat under the guidance and supervision of the UNSCN Executive Secretary and Chairperson.

Post title: Senior Officer (UNSCN Secretariat), P-5

Duty station: Rome, Italy

Applications deadline: 26 October 2015

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NEW DATA OUT NOW! UNICEF – WHO – World Bank Group joint child malnutrition estimates

In September 2015 the inter-agency team released new joint estimates of child malnutrition using available data up to 2014 and the revised UN population estimates (2015 revision). The same methodology as in previous years was applied with minor refinements. These new estimates supersede former analyses results published by UNICEF, WHO and the World Bank Group.

Want to know more? Click below.

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The Global Nutrition Report 2015 has been launched

The Global Nutrition Report (GNR)  2015 is available now and has been formally launched in New York on 22 September. The GNR has been developed by a vast number of authors (70). An Independent Expert Group is responsible for the Global Nutrition Report's data, analysis and conclusions, and is accountable for the quality and independence of its content.

The GNR provides a comprehensive summary and scorecard on both global and country level progress on all forms of nutrition for 193 countries. The 2015 edition builds and reflects on new opportunities, actions, progress, accountability, and data for nutrition, with the aim to build greater commitment to improved nutrition in all countries.

This year's edition has a chapter on the critical relationship between climate change and nutrition, includes a focus on the roles of business and how it can play a pivotal role and fresh data covering all forms of malnutrition - from under nutrition in young children to nutrition-related noncommunicable diseases in adults, and from stunting to obesity.

Read further by clicking on the link below.

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The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2015

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP) launched the latest edition of the annual UN hunger report "The State of Food Insecurity in the World 2015".

The report states that the number of hungry people in the world has dropped to 795 million - that is 216 million fewer than in 1990-92. Yet, the world population has grown by 1.9 billion since 1990, making reductions of the number of hungry people all the more striking, the report says.

In the developing regions, the prevalence of undernourishment has declined to 12.9 percent of the population, down from 23.3 percent a quarter of a century ago. A majority - 72 out of 129 - of the countries monitored by FAO have achieved the Millennium Development Goal target of halving the prevalence of undernourishment by 2015, with developing regions as a whole missing the target by a small margin.

Large reductions in hunger were achieved in East Asia and very fast progress was posted in Latin America and the Caribbean, southeast and central Asia, as well as some parts of Africa, showing that inclusive economic growth, agricultural investments and social protection, along with political stability makes the elimination of hunger possible. Above all, the political will to make hunger eradication a paramount development objective has fostered progress. Sub-Saharan Africa is the region with the highest prevalence of undernourishment in the world - at 23.2 percent, or almost one in every four people.

The full State of Food Insecurity in the World 2015 report is available online, here.
The report in brief is available here.
For further information, click here.

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Launch of the HLPE Report on Water for Food Security and Nutrition - 15 May 2015

Water is key to human life. It is key to human food security and nutrition. Safe drinking water and sanitation are fundamental to the good nutrition, health and dignity of all. According to the latest estimates by WHO/UNICEF, in 2011, 36 per cent of the world's population - 2.5 billion people - lacked improved sanitation facilities, and 768 million people had to rely on unsafe drinking water sources. Safeguarding water for the dignity, health, food and nutrition security of everyone on the planet is one of the biggest challenges that humanity currently faces. It is a fundamental dimension of the sustainable development agenda. This report provides recommendations to help policy makers and actors around nutrition, food security, agriculture, water and all concerned sectors worldwide to overcome this challenge.

The HLPE is pleased to announce that the official launch of its 9th report: Water for food security and nutrition, will take place Friday 15 May 2015 in FAO in Rome.  

Download the Summary and Recommendations of the report here

For more information on CFS and HLPE products under a nutrition lens, click here

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How Can We Strengthen Governance of Non-communicable Diseases in Pacific Island Countries and Territories?

An article by Roger S. Magnusson and David Patterson on how we can strengthen governance of noncommunicable diseases in Pacific Island Countries and territories, is published in Asia and the Pacific Policy Studies, by Crawford School of Public Policy at The Australian National University and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

Pacific island countries and territories (PICTs) are some of the most geographically isolated in the world. Most have small populations and economies. In addition to the economic challenges that they face because of isolation and size are the risks of climate disaster and the challenge of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), including cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and tobacco-related diseases. This article builds on knowledge about the key features that characterise effective national responses to NCDs, as embodied in the World Health Organization's Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases 2013-2020. It seeks to identify some promising strategies for strengthening the governance and law reform processes that will be required to enhance the capacity of small island states to reduce NCD risks in their populations. The constraints on addressing NCDs in the Pacific lie with implementation, rather than the absence of evidence for action, or lack of knowledge about effective policies. The principles that underpin the WHO global action plan provide a useful set of concepts to assist countries in strengthening their national roadmaps for NCDs.

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World Health Statistics reports on global health goals for 194 countries

Published every year since 2005 by WHO, World Health Statistics is the definitive source of information on the health of the world's people. It contains data from 194 countries on a range of mortality, disease and health system indicators including life expectancy, illnesses and deaths from key diseases, health services and treatments, financial investment in health, as well as risk factors and behaviours that affect health.

2015 is the final year for the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) - goals set by governments in 1990 to guide global efforts to end poverty. This year's World Health Statistics- assesses progress towards the health-related goals in each of the 194 countries for which data are available. The results are mixed.

By the end of this year if current trends continue, the world will have met global targets for turning around the epidemics of HIV, malaria and tuberculosis and increasing access to safe drinking water. It will also have made substantial progress in reducing child undernutrition, maternal and child deaths, and increasing access to basic sanitation.

In September, countries will decide on new and ambitious global goals for 2030 at the United Nations General Assembly in New York. In addition to finishing the MDG agenda, the post-2015 agenda needs to tackle emerging challenges including the growing impact of noncommunicable diseases, like diabetes and heart disease, and the changing social and environmental determinants that affect health. The draft post-2015 agenda proposes 17 goals, including an overarching health goal to "ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages".

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Unravelling Commitment? An Empirical Assessment of Political Commitment to Reduce Hunger and Undernutrition in Five High Burden Countries

The IDS Evidence Report 138, written by te Lintelo and Lakshman, has used secondary data to demonstrate that developing countries often have divergent strengths of commitment to hunger reduction and to nutrition (te Lintelo et al. 2013, 2014a). They have reviewed the literature to synthesise a set of nine political commitment indicators; construct a survey instrument; and collect primary data in five high burden countries (Bangladesh, Malawi, Nepal, Tanzania and Zambia) to ascertain whether government commitment to hunger is the same as commitment to nutrition.

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The global prevalence of anaemia in 2011

The World Health Organization (WHO) has just published a report on the global, regional and national prevalence of anaemia. This document describes estimates of the prevalence of anaemia for the year 2011 in preschool-age children (6-59 months) and women of reproductive age (15-49 years), by pregnancy status, and by regions of the United Nations and WHO, as well as by country. This report is based on analyses previously published to estimate trends (from 1995 to 2011) in the distribution of blood haemoglobin concentrations and the prevalence of anaemia in these same population groups.

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Climate change and food systems: global assessments and implications for food security and trade

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN has launched a publication "Climate change and food systems: global assessments and implications for food security and trade" collecting the findings of a group of scientists and economists who have taken stock of climate change impacts on food and agriculture at global and regional levels over the past two decades. The evidence presented describes how global warming will impact where and how food is produced and discusses the significant consequences for food security, health and nutrition, water scarcity and climate adaptation. The book also highlights the implications for global food trade. The different analyses in the book paint a comprehensive perspective linking climate change to food, nutrition, water, and trade along with suggested policy responses.
Read the publication by following the link below:

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