Newsletter A+FS and e+i|EPS / June 2021

​​​​The A+FS Network publishes its Newsletter together with the Employment and Income Network and the Competence Center for the Engagement with the Private Sector (EPS). Please select your area of interest: Agriculture and Food Security | Vocational Skills Development / Private Sector Development / Financial Sector Development / EPS

Feature | Your comments join the network!

Turning a new leaf: Ueli Mauderli, SCD Agriculture & Food Security Focal Point 

After four years as the Agriculture and Food Security (A+FS) Focal Point, Ueli Mauderli will soon leave the SDC headquarters and the Global Programme Food Security (GPFS) team. This summer, he will embark on a new adventure, all the way across the Atlantic, where the sun shines brighter, and mountains reach higher up in the sky. Find out more about his new posting and the network’s highlight moments in this short video interview:


During his time leading the SDC A+FS Network, membership increased to a total of 370 people across the globe! Approximately 1/3 are affiliated to SDC and 2/3 are partners and other agriculture & food security aficionados. Not only did the community grow, but so did participation and traffic: A+FS Shareweb member contributions and unique visitors have nearly doubled since 2018 (more A+FS network statistics available here).

While Ueli’s drive and commitment have undeniably contributed to the increased activity between network members, at the end of the day, the A+FS network is YOU, all of you! The A+FS Shareweb team is extremely grateful for your continuous engagement and looks forward to the journey ahead with Bruce Campbell and Stéphanie Piers van Raveshoot, the new A+FS co-focal points. You might not know them yet, and we are going to keep you on your toes for a little longer… Stay tuned for the Autumn A+FS Newsletter edition!

Read about who is Ueli Mauderli and learn more about the different events and thematic activities Ueli mentioned in his interview.

Members' Articles | Your comments join the network!

Women farmers in Nepal: a new outlook catalyzed by COVID? 

Parbakata KC and her vegetable production. Photo: Nabin Kumar Sharma[by Jane Carter and Sudha Khadka, Helvetas Nepal ] Nepal has been in the news of late for one reason: the terrible toll that the second wave of Covid-19 is having on the lives of its people. The highly contagious Indian and UK variants of the virus are now widespread - straining health services to breaking point. The short article examines the impact on agriculture in the hills of Nepal, and particularly on women farmers … [read more

Composting at Yifendi farm, China ​

[by Dr. Liyan Wang] In light of the recent commitments of the Chinese government towards more ecological farming practices, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) office in China led a series of small-actions on organic waste composting in small to medium sized farms and small rural-urban communities to promote circular and ecological farming practices. SDC colleague Liyan Wang, farmers and members of academia shared experiences from the Yi Fen Di farm ...  [read more]

Savoirs féminins, quelle contribution à la sécurité alimentaire ?  

[by Inter-réseaux Rendre visible la contribution des savoirs féminins à la sécurité alimentaire et nutritionnelle est un réel défi. C’est ce à quoi s’est consacré l’équipe d’Inter-réseaux Développement rural et collègues, dans la nouvelle édition de Grain de sel. La question des savoir-faire féminins y est abordée sous des angles pluridisciplinaires, avec un focus sur les savoirs à l’intersection d’enjeux structurants pour le devenir des agricultures familiales : biodiversité, nutrition, résilience, dans un contexte en pleine évolution et notamment redéfini par la crise de la covid-19 ... [read more]

News | Your comments join the network!

2021 Global Report on Food Crises 

The number of people facing acute food insecurity and needing urgent life and livelihood-saving assistance has hit a five-year high in 2020 in countries beset by food crises, revealed an annual report launched by the Global Network Against Food Crises (GNAFC). The stark warning from the 2021 Global Report on Food Crises reveals that conflict, or economic shocks that are often related to COVID-19 along with extreme weather, continue to push millions of people into acute food insecurity … [read more]

Transforming food systems after COVID-19 

The coronavirus pandemic has upended local, national, and global food systems, and put the Sustainable Development Goals further out of reach. But lessons from the world’s response to the pandemic can help address future shocks and contribute to food system change. In the 2021 Global Food Policy Report, IFPRI researchers and other food policy experts explore the impacts of the pandemic and government policy responses, particularly for the poor and disadvantaged, and consider what this means for transforming our food systems to be healthy, resilient, efficient, sustainable, and inclusive ... [read more​]

CABI’s groundbreaking online bioprotection resource is available to a growing number of countries – across four continents. Accessible on multiple devices and in local languages, the CABI BioProtection Portal aims to promote awareness and uptake of more sustainable approaches to agriculture and horticulture worldwide by helping growers and agricultural advisors identify, source and correctly apply biocontrol and biopesticide products for their specific crop-pest problems ... [read more​]

Bites of Transfoodmation (BoT) carries to voice of younger generations in making our food systems more sustainable and resilient ahead of the UN Food Systems Summit 2021. The project is supported by the permanent mission of Switzerland to the United Nations organisations in Rome, the Swiss Embassy in Rome, Istituto Svizzero, Présence Suisse and Università della Svizzera italiana (SUI). Meet Ludovica and Laurence in this short interview and follow the project’s latest updates:  Facebook I Instagram I Twitter I Youtube I Vimeo I LinkedIn I Website​ ... [watch the video]

IFAD’s support for the better use of agrobiodiversity with specific reference to neglected and underutilized species (NUS) and a greater recognition of the traditional knowledge of Indigenous Peoples associated with the use of NUS and wild edibles are important for fighting food and nutrition insecurity. The How to Do Notes offer recommendations on practical methods, approaches, and tools for use-enhancement of NUS in both design and implementation of IFAD-funded projects to support more nutrition-sensitive agriculture ... [read more]

Events | Your comments join the network!

Transforming agricultural innovation systems under climate change

The UK together with CGIAR-CCAFS is organizing a webinar series to set the path for a transformation in agricultural innovation systems in the lead up to the UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26). On 16 June 2021 (15:00-16:00 EST) an evidence review study on end-to-end innovation approaches will be presented and on 23 June 2021 (15:00-16:00 EST) experts will provide the latest global, regional and country estimates of the investment gap. [read more]​

Plant health: Links to food systems, climate change and biodiversity

The International Plant Protection Convention presents two webinars to engage the international community on the importance of plant health and to pave the path to the International Plant Health Conference 2022. On 29 June 2021 (13:00-16:00 CET) participants will discuss the link between food systems and plant health and on 30 June 2021 (13:00-16:00 CET) the topic will be the relation between climate change, plant health and biodiversity. [webinar 1 | webinar 2]​ ​​

Sustainable Diet – Online Course 

Be a part of the sustainable food revolution! Learn how your food habits and daily choices are affecting your health and that of the planet. Gain the skills and knowledge to make your diet more healthy and sustainable. This self-paced online course provided by UN CC:Learn and supported by SDC will help you take action to counter climate change.​​ [read more]​ ​​

Social Protection – SDC Online Learning Series

Licensed by GOPA from SDC training encompasses nine learning events spread over a period of one year (23.06.2021 – 24.08.2022). The learning modules build upon  one another and will look at social protection from various angles: agriculture and food security, private sector development, health, governance, gender. [read more]​ ​​

Who is who | Your comments join the network!

Laila Kenawy 

National Programme Officer, Office of International Cooperation, Embassy of Switzerland in Egypt 

​What do you love about your work, what is special about it?

The diversity of my work makes it quite special. It keeps opening up small windows of experience in the most interesting fields and covers the whole spectrum of development. It requires the constant development of skills and knowledge and keeps you on your toes. It requires a certain finesse, to balance theory and practice, to adapt to cultures and to have patience to work with nature and another kind of patience to maneuver different bureaucracies. But the best part of the job is when you see that it did make a difference in people’s lives!

What is your biggest non-work accomplishment?

Providing off grid solar home systems to the marginalized Heiz village in the Bahareya Owasis of Egypt. Leveraging on the positive momentum of the Arab spring, the complementary skills and knowledge of Rotaract members and the trust of public and private donor organizations, made it possible. The project was awarded best project in Africa by Rotary International that year.

What is the most important lesson you have learned from your work?

What makes or breaks development projects are people, so choose your team wisely. You may have the best management system, project design or funding, but the right people are the ones that put things in motion doing the right things the right way.

On weekdays, a development professional with a Master of Science in Agribusiness from the University of Göttingen and more than 10 years of experience in sustainable economic, rural and livelihood development and agricultural economics with versed experience in various aspects of project development, monitoring and evaluation, and project management and implementation. On weekends, supporting the management of the family citrus and mango orchard. And in the afternoons, the honorary secretary of Egypt’s only German speaking Rotary Club and a hobby painter.

Your Comments

Leave your comments on specific articles or on this newsletter in general! join the network!  (only for logged-in members