Feed the Future
This project is part of the U.S. Government's global hunger and food security initiative.

Food Systems and Nutrition E-Consultation: Emerging Evidence And Research Opportunities

Event Date: 
Nov 12, 2019 to Nov 18, 2019
9:00 am EST
Online Event
USAID Bureau for Food Security, USAID Advancing Nutrition, Agrilinks


Feeding the world’s population with safe and nutritious food means we must overcome ever-evolving challenges through innovative research on cost-effective and sustainable strategies to prevent malnutrition.

Join the USAID Bureau for Food Security, USAID Advancing Nutrition, Agrilinks and the Feed the Future Nutrition Innovation Lab for an e-consultation to discuss opportunities for future research with researchers and the scientific community, implementers, donors, nongovernmental organizations, and government stakeholders.  

The e-consultation will focus on findings from the USAID Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition’s just-completed evidence review. The review both synthesizes research to-date on how food systems affect nutrition outcomes and suggests opportunities for further research.

USAID Advancing Nutrition is hosting a week-long online discussion from November 12-18 on Agrilinks.

Discussions center on findings related to—

  • production and processing of nutritious foods
  • agriculture-nutrition linkages
  • food safety, food loss, and waste
  • gender, resilience, and sustainability.

Participate anytime or join moderated discussions, held twice a day for each topic, and facilitated by subject matter experts. 

Webinar and Discussion Agenda

Tuesday, November 12

9:00 - 10:30 a.m. EST

Overview webinar

10:30 p.m. - 12:30 p.m. EST (UCT 15:30-17:30)

Online Discussion Topic | Production and processing of nutrient-rich foods

10:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m. EST (November 13 UCT 3:00-5:00)

Online Discussion Topic | Production and processing of nutrient-rich foods

Wednesday, November 13

10:00 - 12:00 a.m. EST (UCT 15:00-17:00)

Online Discussion Topic | Agriculture-nutrition linkages at population scale

10:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m. EST (November 14 UCT 3:00-5:00)

Online Discussion Topic | Agriculture-nutrition linkages at population scale

Thursday, November 14

10:00 - 12:00 a.m. EST (UCT 15:00-17:00)

Online Discussion Topic | Food safety, loss and waste

10:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m. EST (November 15 UCT 3:00-5:00)

Online Discussion Topic | Food safety, loss and waste

Friday, November 15

10:00 - 12:00 a.m. EST (November 16 UCT 15:00-17:00)

Online Discussion Topic | Gender, resilience, and sustainability

Sunday, November 17

10:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m. EST (November 18 UCT 3:00-5:00)

Online Discussion Topic | Gender, resilience, and sustainability


Project Director
USAID Advancing Nutrition

Heather Danton leads staff and coordinates with partners as they design, implement, and evaluate programs that address the root causes of malnutrition.

Heather has more than 20 years of experience in the area of food security and livelihoods and is a specialist in the design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of programs that integrate economic and agricultural development with nutrition. From September 2012 to 2018, she served as the director of the Agriculture to Nutrition team of Strengthening Partnerships, Results, and Innovations in Nutrition Globally (SPRING), USAID's global nutrition project (2011-2018). Prior to that, Heather worked as a technical advisor and then as the senior director of food security and livelihoods for Save the Children Federation, Inc., in Washington, DC, where she managed their food security portfolio, including USAID/Food for Peace-funded Title II programs in 10 countries.

In addition to working internationally, Heather served as vice president for SEED Corporation, a non-profit certified development company in Massachusetts, overseeing small business lending and entrepreneurial training in association with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Doctoral Student
Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University

Ilana Cliffer is a doctoral student in the Food and Nutrition Policy and Programs division at the Tufts’ Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy.

Her primary research interests include prevention and treatment of malnutrition in children, including the intersection of infectious disease, malnutrition, and the environment. Ilana became interested in public health nutrition as a Peace Corps volunteer in Burkina Faso, where she worked with her community to treat moderate malnutrition using local resources and hygiene education. She obtained her Master of Public Health from Emory University, where she worked in the International Emergency and Refugee Health Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and collaborated with CARE Bangladesh on defining women’s empowerment for infant and young child feeding. Prior to starting the PhD program, Ilana was based in Burkina Faso as the Field Research Director on a study investigating the cost-effectiveness of food aid. Currently, Ilana is working with the Nutrition Innovation Lab to conduct an evidence review on food-systems nutrition linkages.

Senior Social and Behavior Change Advisor
USAID Advancing Nutrition

Ashley Aakesson is a social scientist, social and behavior change (SBC) practitioner, and nutrition leader with 20 years of experience and a strong commitment to working in solidarity with vulnerab

le groups. Ms. Aakesson is a Senior SBC Advisor with USAID Advancing Nutrition. In this role, she provides strategic thinking, technical guidance, and support at country and global levels in maternal and infant/young child nutrition and nutrition-sensitive interventions. She has particular expertise in designing multi-sectoral nutrition programming which leverages SBC principles and processes to increase effectiveness. Prior to her work with Advancing Nutrition, Ms. Aakesson has worked as an SBCC Advisor with SPRING, Nutrition Program Officer with PATH, Executive Director of the Children’s Nutrition Program of Haiti, and Behavior Change and Nutrition Specialist for Save the Children. She holds a Master of Arts in Applied Anthropology with a specialization in community, health, and development from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Supervising Dietitian
Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition

Sanele Nkomani is a registered dietitian with a master’s in Nutrition and Dietetics from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Her career has focused on developing clinical nutrition practice in developing countries. Sanele has taking lead roles in the development of credentialing requirements, standards of practice and education for registered dietitians in Zimbabwe and Malawi. She also has significant experience in developing clinical dietetics curricula, competencies and protocols for the nutritional management of critically ill patients. She has over eight years of experience working in various clinical settings including public and private health care in Malawi, Zimbabwe and South Africa. Sanele is currently the Supervising Dietitian for the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition activity in Malawi. She is responsible for the implementation of a post graduate diploma in clinical dietetics, which includes teaching graduate classes in medical nutrition therapy and mentoring students during clinical internships. She has acted as lead author and co-author for 12 publications, including one in The Lancet.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Feed the Future Nutrition Innovation Lab

Johanna Andrews-Trevino is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University working at the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition.

Johanna’s work examines the linkages between agriculture, food safety and nutrition. Her postdoctoral research focuses on the coexistence of multiple mycotoxins and its relationship to child growth. She holds a Ph.D. in Food Policy and Applied Nutrition from Tufts University and a MSc. in Public Health from Karolinska Institute. Johanna’s doctoral research focused on dietary and agronomic/food handling determinants of aflatoxin exposure among Nepalese pregnant women and studied the link between in utero aflatoxin exposure and adverse birth outcomes.

Research Manager
Feed the Future Nutrition Innovation Lab

Ashish Pokharel is the research manager for the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Nutrition’s AflaCohort study in Nepal.

He has an educational background in nutrition and possesses a Masters’ degree in Food Policy and Applied Nutrition from Friedman School of Nutrition, Tufts University, Boston, USA. Mr. Pokharel has more than 3 years of professional experience in managing large scale longitudinal mycotoxin research. His research interest lies in studying neglected biological pathways affecting nutrition outcomes in 1000 days mothers and children, including the role of mycotoxin contamination and food safety in nutrition. Mr. Pokharel continues to work with the stakeholders to highlight and address the issues of mycotoxin contamination at the district and national level in Nepal.

Director of Food Security & Nutrition
USAID Advancing Nutrition

Ina Schønberg leads food security, resilience, and multi-sectoral nutrition-sensitive approaches for USAID Advancing Nutrition, including but not limited to those engaging the WASH, social protecti

on, and early childhood development (ECD) sectors. Ina is also involved with capacity strengthening efforts across the project to bolster and sustain multi-sectoral nutrition outcomes at all levels.

She brings more than 25 years of experience in food security, agriculture, and nutrition in development and humanitarian contexts. Most recently, she served as the director of global programs at HarvestPlus, filling senior management, headquarters operations, and research team oversight roles. She also has held various technical and partnership roles in nutrition, livelihoods, food security, and disaster risk reduction at FHI 360; University Research Corp, LLC; the International Federation of the Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies; and GAIN.

Assistant Professor of Teaching in International Agricultural Development
University of California - Davis

Amanda is a lecturer and researcher in international agricultural development.

She has over ten years of university teaching experience and currently teaches courses for undergraduate and graduate students in international agricultural development theory and practice, program management and evaluation, and social change. Her research focuses on improving educational outcomes for women and other underserved adults with the aim of improving food security and nutritional status.

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11/15/2019 - 12:39pm

11/15/2019 - 12:38pm

11/15/2019 - 11:38am

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