Duty Station: New York, Washington DC, Nairobi, Rome or London preferred

Deadline for application: 02 December 2020

Vacancy announcement

18-19 November 2020, 12:00 – 5:30PM ET
Register here

Hosted by the Alliance to End Hunger, the goals of the 2020 Hunger Free Communities Virtual Summit are to understand the changing landscape of hunger and build a resilient post-pandemic America.

We will accomplish this by:

  • Highlighting effective policies and methods for reducing community food insecurity
  • Sharing best practices and resources
  • Demonstrating effective multi-sector collaborations
  • Building skills among practitioners

Agenda

On November 13th the UNIATF COVID-19 Meeting had a special session on nutrition titled ‘Nourishing the Post COVID-19 World’. Facilitated by UNSCN the session brought together representatives of the UNIATF’s Nutrition and NCDs thematic working group from FAO, UNICEF, WFP, IDLO and WHO to amplify the messages in their joint narrative on the importance of nutrition in the COVID-19 response.

See the full recording here

Presenter Slides (1.4MB)

Highlights from the Session include:

  • The interlinkages between nutrition and COVID-19 with malnutrition both a risk factor for infection severity, and at risk of intensification due to the economic and social impacts of COVID-19 and the opportunity to mitigate this impact through nourishing action by Stineke Oenema, UNSCN
  • An introduction to the Food Systems Summit 2021 and its preparatory dialogues to foster inclusion by Jamie Morrison, FAO
  • An overview of the impact of COVID-19 on breastfeeding and complementary feeding as well as the long turn consequences on the NCD Burden, including a summary of urgent actions for governments and policy makers to mitigate these risks by Fatmata Fatima Sesay, UNICEF
  • The impacts of COVID-19 and actions WFP is taking to help mitigate its impact on the nutrition of school-age children through school based programmes, by Maree Bouterakos, WFP
  • Legal perspectives on the response to the food crisis during COVID-19, including details on a pilot project in Honduras and Uganda by Giulia Zevi, IDLO
  • Results of the COVID-19 preparedness and response plans through an NCD lens by Melanie Cowen, WHO

Duty Station: United States

Contract type: Fixed Term Appointment, P-4

Deadline for application: 25 November 2020

Vacancy announcement

6 November 2020, 13.00 – 15.30 CET
Register here
Part of MNF CONNECTED conference

The purpose of the Second Global Summit on Food Fortification Launch Event is to mobilize high-level political will to pursue the unfinished agenda on large scale fortification and biofortification and to demonstrate high-level attention and commitment to the fortification agenda across sectors and stakeholders.

The high-level launch event will:

  • Highlight for a large global audience the significant untapped potential of large-scale fortification and biofortification and the urgency of closing this gap to combat rising malnutrition during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond;
  • Celebrate Progress – focusing on salt iodization as an inspiring global success story with lessons relevant to the fortification unfinished agenda and India as a country that has made significant progress in the 5 years since the first global summit on food fortification in 2015;
  • Present the fortification Unfinished Agenda, including key barriers that must be tackled and promising solutions that should be pursued to ensure that large-scale and biofortification maximize their impact;
  • Promote the Food Systems Summit and N4G as key opportunities to mobilize support for food fortification;
  • Celebrate national progress, and identify key challenges and actions to address them;
  • Call on global and national leaders to do more to accelerate progress on large scale and biofortification.

More info here

Over the past five years, UNSCN has published a range of papers (visit our Resources library here). We have prepared a short survey to collect your feedback on some of these documents and gain insight to what extent they have served your needs. This will help us sharpen our knowledge management while UNSCN will transition into UN Nutrition in 2021.

The survey should only take around 10 minutes of your time and is open until Wednesday 11 November 2020.

With the evolution of UNSCN to UN Nutrition you are also welcome to share any other comments, experiences or feelings by sending us an email at info@unscn.org

UNSCN publications

UNICEF, WHO, CDC and Nutrition International have released the Micronutrient Survey Manual and digitized Toolkit. Nutrition stakeholders around the world can now access expanded and digitized resources needed to conduct micronutrient surveys and evaluations.

Globally, at least 1 in 2 children under 5 suffers from hidden hunger due to deficiencies in vitamins and other essential micronutrients. Hidden hunger harms children - it undermines their capacity to grow, develop and learn to their full potential. Accurate and reliable nutrition data provides evidence for policy makers to better understand and tackle this nutrition problem. 

The user-friendly format of the new survey manual and toolkit allows program managers, researchers and government officials alike to access and search the entire knowledge library of best practices and resources for micronutrient status assessment on an interactive website. There is also a downloadable platform that functions just like the website and enables these resources to be accessible to users offline. The content includes 16 modules of information and more than 200 tools, examples and resources in a searchable platform.

 

Deadline for submissions: 31 December 2020

What drives people towards tobacco use? What prevents people from doing physical exercise or adopting preventive measures during a pandemic? What increases the likelihood that someone will adhere to treatment or seek appropriate health care?

While a growing body of knowledge provides insights into these questions, factoring behavioural evidence effectively into health policies and programmes can be challenging. For example, health programmes often rest on the assumption that people will act in their best interest once we increase their awareness and knowledge. Yet, we know that this increase is insufficient for a behaviour to change. Because of inertia and preference for short-term rewards, people may continue with their unhealthy habits, despite improved health literacy. Certain health policies underestimate the importance of social norms and the fact that our behaviours are influenced by our perceptions of how other people think and act. Some interventions focus only on the human factor, without giving attention to environmental and structural issues that determine what options are available and how these options are presented to the population.

Too often, considerations around behaviours are only discussed in the implementation phase; but effective health policies and strategies require raising critical behavioural issues and questions much earlier, when broad policy objectives are discussed and designed. If we expect policy-makers and practitioners to increase the use of behavioural and social sciences, the global community of experts needs to provide easy access to evidence, tools, expertise and examples of use.

Behaviours are the result of complex interactions among cognitive, emotional, social and environmental drivers. To understand these, we need to draw theories and evidence from a variety of fields: sociology, behavioural sciences, behavioural economics, cognitive sciences, psychology, anthropology, humanities, communications, marketing, design thinking and system thinking.

To achieve health for all, policy-makers and practitioners need deeper insights into what shapes individual and collective behaviours among the general population as well as among practitioners and health-care workers who design and deliver health and social care. As part of its efforts to scale up the use of behavioural and social sciences in public health, the World Health Organization created a multidisciplinary technical advisory group for behavioural insights and sciences for health in 2020. The Bulletin of the World Health Organization will publish a theme issue on behavioural and social sciences for better health in 2021. We invite practitioners and researchers, particularly from low- and middle-income countries, to submit manuscripts with original research, reviews, perspectives and lessons from the field on the unique opportunities the behavioural and social sciences provide in achieving health for all.

We are interested in behaviourally informed approaches, interventions and reforms that have been shown to improve public health. In particular, we will welcome manuscripts that illustrate how behavioural sciences have been used for the design of policies and programmes; how behaviours of key players – including, but not only, at the population level – are addressed within health systems; how robust behavioural evidence can be gathered despite time and financial constraints; and how innovative approaches can help in overcoming these constraints. We hope submissions will provide evidence as to how multidisciplinary approaches improve the quality of behaviourally informed interventions; if and how existing behavioural theories and models are relevant to low- and middle-income countries; and how to build knowledge and skills relevant to behavioural and social sciences among health workers, practitioners and policy-makers.

The deadline for submissions is 31 December 2020. Manuscripts should be submitted in accordance with the Bulletin’s guidelines for contributors (available at: http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes796/1/18-990118/en) and the cover letter should mention this call for papers.

The call for papers was published in the October 2020 issue and can be accessed here.

In 2021, UN Secretary-General António Guterres will convene a Food Systems Summit as part of the Decade of Action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. The Summit will launch bold new actions to deliver progress on all 17 SDGs, each of which relies to some degree on healthier, more sustainable and equitable food systems.

The Summit will awaken the world to the fact that we all must work together to transform the way the world produces, consumes and thinks about food. It is a summit for everyone everywhere – a people’s summit. It is also a solutions summit that will require everyone to take action to transform the world’s food systems.

Guided by five Action Tracks, the Summit will bring together key players from the worlds of science, business, policy, healthcare and academia, as well as farmers, indigenous people, youth organizations, consumer groups, environmental activists, and other key stakeholders. Before, during and after the Summit, these actors will come together to bring about tangible, positive changes to the world’s food systems. 

Each track, with support from its corresponding chair and vice-chairs, is designed to address synergies as well as possible trade-offs with other tracks, and to identify bold new actions, innovative solutions, and strategies that can deliver wide-reaching benefits across all of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They are to create solutions at local, national, regional, and global levels and to scale up and to accelerate existing initiatives that align to the Summit vision and principles.

UN agencies will provide technical assistance as well as a link into the broader experience and expertise of the entire UN system, and oversee support for Summit follow-up activities. In addition, members of the Scientific Group will engage in each area to ensure the tracks are underpinned by robust evidence and science.

The following UN agencies have been selected as anchoring agencies for each action track:

  • FAO - Action track 1: Ensuring access to safe and nutritious food for all
  • WHO - Action track 2: Shifting to sustainable consumption patterns
  • UNCCD - Action track 3: Boosting nature-positive production at scale
  • IFAD - Action track 4: Advancing equitable livelihoods
  • WFP - Action track 5: Building resilience to vulnerabilities, shocks and stresses

 

The Summit process aims to deliver the following outcomes:

  1. Generate significant action and measurable progress towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Summit will succeed in identifying solutions and leaders, and issuing a call for action at all levels of the food system, including national and local governments, companies and citizens.
  2. Raise awareness and elevate public discussion about how reforming our food systems can help us all to achieve the SDGs by implementing reforms that are good for people and planet.
  3. Develop principles to guide governments and other stakeholders looking to leverage their food systems to support the SDGs. These principles will set an optimistic and encouraging vision in which food systems play a central role in building a fairer, more sustainable world. Principles of engagement
  4. Create a system of follow-up and review to ensure that the Summit’s outcomes continue to drive new actions and progress. This system will allow for the sharing of experiences, lessons and knowledge; it will also measure and analyse the Summit’s impact.

More information is available here

UNICEF has released its revised Core Commitments for Children in Humanitarian Action (CCCs). Grounded in global humanitarian norms and standards, the CCCs set organizational, programmatic, and operational commitments and benchmarks for UNICEF.  

The CCCs have been revised to equip UNICEF and its partners to deliver principled, timely, quality and child‑centred humanitarian response and advocacy in any crises with humanitarian consequences.

For Nutrition, the revised CCCs describe eight commitments to ensure children, adolescents, and women have access to diets, services and practices that improve their nutritional status in humanitarian crisis: 

  1. Leadership and coordination 
  2. Information systems and nutrition assessments 
  3. Prevention of stunting, wasting, micronutrient deficiencies and overweight in children aged under five years 
  4. Prevention of undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies, and anaemia in middle childhood and adolescence 
  5. Prevention of undernutrition, micronutrient deficiencies, and anaemia in pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers 
  6. Nutrition care for wasted children 
  7. System strengthening for maternal and child nutrition 
  8. Community engagement for behaviour and social change 

To fulfil these commitments, UNICEF draws upon multiple resources including those in UNICEF's Nutrition in Emergencies Training and those developed by the Global Nutrition Cluster and the Infant Feeding in Emergencies Core Group.