“Our policy objective in the aid community, should be to end famine as we know it in our lifetime.” That was the challenge presented to us by Andrew Natsios, former Administrator, USAID, at Transforming Global Food Security, a series of discussions on preventing famine through improved technological innovation at the Center for Strategic and International Studies on May 11th.

Read the full article at: www.ictworks.org

Today we have amazing tools of technology that can sense and predict food insecurity months before it happens. From satellites circling the earth, to ground-based remote sensors in the oceans, rivers, and farms, we can forecast weather events with high degrees of accuracy. In fact, aWhere has created a global agronomic weather database with 1.6 million ‘virtual weather stations’ at 9km intervals.

Sadly, too often smart, data-driven recommendations are met with inaction and indifference. Food is a political weapon, it has been used to reward allies and punish detractors from time memorial, and we need to find ways to provides incentives for data-driven decision making over political expediency. Here are three ways we can start:

1. Make the improved data more visible, accessible, and operational.

2. Push the newly obtained and improved data sub-nationally.

3. Create improved mechanisms for dialogue and action planning.

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