Sustainability Education for Achieving Food Security and Promoting Sustainable Agriculture

Workshop Partners


Working Group discussing SDG 2 “End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture”.


The world’s population reached 6 billion people in 1999 and is expected to reach 8.5 billion by 2025, when 83% of the world will be living in the South. Feeding this growing population of earth adequately and nutritiously, in a sustainable manner, is a one of the greatest challenge of our time. Though in last 20 years hunger has dropped almost half, still about 795 million people continue to suffer from hunger out of which almost 98% are in developing countries. Thus distribution of huger is highly uneven indicating that food security is a multi-dimensional complex issue. 

While poverty is considered one of the most important barrier in-front of us in ensuring food security for all there are several other dimensions such as challenges of combating land degradation and enhance productivity in as sustainable manner, preventing food loss and damages, promoting sustainable agricultural practices which can ensure farming systems which are resilient to weather vagaries and so on. This complexity is reflected in the targets that are set for Goal 2.

Women and children are most vulnerable group. About 146 million children are undernourished in developing countries.  Along with poverty, undernourishment of women is also linked with socio-cultural beliefs, structures and traditions. Across the globe social protection programmes are being seen as one of the solutions towards ensuring food security of such vulnerable groups. 

Almost 50% of the world’s hungry people are from small holder farming communities surviving on marginal lands which are prone to natural calamities like flood and drought. Under changing climatic scenario these is under higher vulnerability. It is for this reason that investing in sustainable agriculture can help achieve multiple targets simultaneously. The United Nations Environment Programme’s green economy models have shown that investing 0.16 per cent of global gross domestic product (GDP) in sustainable agriculture per year ($198 billion between 2011 and 2050) would provide strong returns compared to the baseline scenario of conventional and traditional agriculture. (Point 28, Trends in Agricultural Technologies in Developing countries, UNGA Agriculture Technology Report)


SDG GOAL 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture
2.1: By 2030, end hunger and ensure access by all people, in particular the poor and people in vulnerable situations, including infants, to safe, nutritious and sufficient food all year round

2.2: By 2030, end all forms of malnutrition, including achieving, by 2025, the internationally agreed targets on stunting and wasting in children under 5 years of age, and address the nutritional needs of adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating women and older persons

2.3: By 2030, double the agricultural productivity and incomes of small-scale food producers, in particular women, indigenous peoples, family farmers, pastoralists and fishers, including through secure and equal access to land, other productive resources and inputs, knowledge, financial services, markets and opportunities for value addition and non-farm employment

2.4: By 2030, ensure sustainable food production systems and implement resilient agricultural practices that increase productivity and production, that help maintain ecosystems, that strengthen capacity for adaptation to climate change, extreme weather, drought, flooding and other disasters and that progressively improve land and soil quality

2.5: By 2020, maintain the genetic diversity of seeds, cultivated plants and farmed and domesticated animals and their related wild species, including through soundly managed and diversified seed and plant banks at the national, regional and international levels, and promote access to and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge, as internationally agreed

2.a: Increase investment, including through enhanced international cooperation, in rural infrastructure, agricultural research and extension services, technology development and plant and livestock gene banks in order to enhance agricultural productive capacity in developing countries, in particular least developed countries

2.b: Correct and prevent trade restrictions and distortions in world agricultural markets, including through the parallel elimination of all forms of agricultural export subsidies and all export measures with equivalent effect, in accordance with the mandate of the Doha Development Round

2.c: Adopt measures to ensure the proper functioning of food commodity markets and their derivatives and facilitate timely access to market information, including on food reserves, in order to help limit extreme food price volatility


Role of Sustainability Education:
While social protection programmes and investment in sustainable agriculture and livelihood promotion programmes are very crucial in achieving the SDG 2, very crucial role sustainability education can play in ensuring the efficient reach of this programme. Community participation, education and awareness are those critical factors which can play very important role. For example empowering women to change the social dynamics or providing education about having balanced diet requires not just breaking poverty but also breaking cultural beliefs and traditions and social structures. Similarly practicing sustainable agriculture may require understanding and education about complex agro-ecological system and appropriate skills.

Thus this workshop created a wider discussion about what role sustainability education can play in achieving SDG 2. The workshop provided a platform to share ESD experiences, to reflect and discuss on sustainable food production systems and how food and nutritional security can be achieved for the global population through education initiatives.


  • What are ways of sustainable agriculture and food production practices that can protect the environment and produce enough, quality, safe food for a global population? What role ESD can play to ensure the sustainable management of natural resources and vital ecosystems services?
  • How to reduce vulnerability of small and marginal farmers and ensure that their land productivity can be enhanced in ecologically sustainable manner along with increasing their income.
  • What can be the country level policies for research and mainstreaming of the food security concern at all levels.
  • Sharing and learning from various ideas, experiences, best practices, models, and policies of sustainable farming (ecological farming) and how to scale-up through education processes.
  • What are gaps and need of ESD to achieve SDGs at multiple level stakeholders?
  • How to prepare future generation of agriculture and food production professionals with sustainability perspective?
  • How modern technology could be used to reach out to the unreached for sustainability education in the area of food and agriculture production?
  • To create a common understanding/agreement over the role of sustainability education for achieving SDG 2
  • To discuss experiences and best practices in promoting sustainable agriculture and ensuring food security.
  • To identify the importance of informal community education networks and traditional knowledge  for achieving sustainable development goals
  • To bring out how ESD component can be integrated across various sectors to achieve SDG 2


CEE Focal Point: Ramesh Savalia (+91-9426355382) and Janki Shah (+91-9429003390),


Workshop Sessions

Time / Date

11/1/2016 (Monday)

12/1/2016 (Tuesday)

13/1/2016 (Wednesday)

8:00 - 9.00




9.30 - 10.45

Inaugural Plenary

Setting the Tone

Plenary 2
Measurement, Indicators

Tracking Progress

Session V
Group Discussion on the role of ESD,
means of implementation, measures and way forwards for achieving SDG-2

Mr. Wayne Nelles, Chulalongkorn
University School of Agricultural
Resources, Chulalongkorn University,
Bangkok, Thailand

10.45 - 11.15

Tea Break

11.15- 1.15

Plenary 1
SDGs and Role of Education

Working Group Session III
Panel Discussion : Role of Community Based Networks and Partnerships for Achieving SDG-2

  • Antara Trivedi, Ms. Hetvi Shah and Dr. Neeta Shah, CHETNA: Education for Complementary Nutrition- Challenges and Dilemmas

  • Prof. Katsunori Suzuki, Board Director, ESD-J and Professor , Kanazawa University, Japan: Asian NGO Network on ESD (ANNE) for community based ESD initiatives
  • Mr. Tushar Pancholi, Director and Founder Trustee, Paryavaraniya Vikas Kendra:Millet Network of India (MINI) for sustainable agriculture

Session VI
Concluding and Drafting Recommendations for Strengthening role of sustainability education at various levels for achieving food security and sustainable agriculture

1.15- 2.30

Lunch Break

2.30  - 4.00

Session I
Panel Discussion: Food security and sustainable Agriculture - Exploring complexity of linkages in the context of SDGs

  • Dr. Prema Ramachandran, Director, Nutrition Foundation of India: Challenges of Food security
        • Mr. Kapil Shah, Director and Founder Trustee, Jatan : Challenges of Sustainable Agriculture
  • Open Forum

Session IV
Panel Discussion: Global experience and way forward  towards achieving Goal 2

  • Ms. Saraswathi Gopala Rao, Country Coordinator, Freedom from Hunger India: Role of education for holistic approach to tackle food security.
  • Dr. G. V. Ramanjaneyulu, Executive Director, Centre for Sustainable Agriculture: Role of education in strengthening and promoting agro-ecology based sustainable agriculture  
  • Open Forum

Closing Plenary
The Way Forward

4.00 -4.30

Tea Break

High Tea

5.00- 6.00

Session II
Panel Discussion: ESD for Community based sustainability programme

  • Mr. D.P. Singh, Dy Programme Lead, Reliance Foundation: Achieving nutrition security through community based Nutrition Garden approach.
  • Ms. Fumiko Noguchi: Author, Communities in Action Lifelong Learning for Sustainable Development: Informal ESD in Community Development Context
  • Open Forum

Prabeena Devi, Project Manager,
Reliance Foundation

Plenary 3:
GAP and SDGs

Strengthening Commitments

6.30 - 8.00

Cultural Evening and Dinner