Food Security in Fragile and Conflict Affected States
The University of Edinburgh-led network on Global Health and Food Security in Fragile and Conflict Affected States (FCAS) was created in 2019 with the aim of improving relevant Sustainable Development Goals monitoring, and accelerating progress towards food and health security in complex contexts.
Our mission is to facilitate an expert information ecosystem that can be tailored to different FCAS geographies around the world, which will facilitate mutual learning and equal partnerships between displaced academics/refugees, NGOs/ other decision-makers and UK research organisations in order to address knowledge gaps, horizon-scan for and respond to emerging threats and improve long-term contingency planning and resilience.
The FCAS network has already begun to demonstrate its capacity to support science-policy communication and knowledge exchange between dislocated Syrian academics and decision-makers. With the support of the Cara Syria Programme and local partners, the network has identified education and training needs, and partners have started to co-construct a provisional framework for a future programme of research.
In June 2019, The FCAS network, in collaboration with the Cara Syria programme, hosted a roundtable meeting for Syrian Academics to connect Syrian academics living in exile with the wider international research community, and local practitioners, private/public partners and international humanitarian organisations including UN agencies working in health and food security in Syria so that they might exercise a social voice in the redevelopment and reconstruction of their culture and future society, particularly in the field of agriculture.
The outcomes of this meeting are summarised in the following policy brief, full report and video:
- Video: Video FCAS
- A short film on the topic of Global Health Security in Fragile and Conflict Affected States.
From the FIELD: lmpacts of COVID-19 on lives and livelihoods of Syrians living in the Levant
According to the Global Health Security Index, Syria is one of the least prepared countries in the world for a disease outbreak. More than a decade of civil war
and a collapsing economy have forced 6 million or more Syrians into crowded living conditions along the Syrian border, into neighbouring countries and failed states with ongoing economic and political crises, and fragile and fragmented healthcare systems.
“From the Field Syria” is an SFC-GCRF COVID-19 urgent research call project which will explore the impact of COVID-19 on UN Sustainable Development Goals in humanitarian setting and in particular, the impact of COVID-19 risk mitigation strategies (border closures, movement restrictions) on access to food, agriculture inputs and other health supplies, and how has this translated into the experiences of Syrian refugees living in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraqi Kurdistan and NW Syria. Understanding how information about disease and measures taken to reduce risk affects behavioural change and the daily lives/experiences of Syrians, is critical for future monitoring/evaluation of effectiveness of interventions, long-term outcomes and support needs for food and health security after outbreak end, and in anticipation of subsequent future events. This work will feed into the GCRF-funded Syrian Food Futures project, as part of the work by the UoE-led Network of Expertise on Food and Health Security in Fragile and Conflict Affected States in collaboration with the Cara Syria Programme.
Read the blog on the likely impact of COVID-19 on lives and agricultural livelihoods of displaced Syrians here.
For more information about this project, contact: Lisa.Boden@ed.ac.uk or tweet@Lisa_A_Boden and @SyriaFoodFuture.