The Defra Systems Research Programme launched in May 2019 to close the gap between the research and policy worlds in order to overcome environmental and social challenges. Professor Doherty, of the University of York, is one of the six academic Fellows tasked with understanding key policy questions.
“It’s exciting to be part of Defra’s new Systems Programme team and I’m looking forward to taking an interdisciplinary food systems approach in policy making. It’s an opportunity to embed the research evidence from the work of research programmes such as the Global Food Security Programme and N8 Agrifood into Defra and other Government departments to create more holistic approaches.”
Despite its key role, our food system is under increasing pressure from a range of environmental and socioeconomic drivers – Professor Bob Doherty
“The food and farming sector is critical to the UK economy and comprises our largest manufacturing sector. Despite its key role, our food system is under increasing pressure from a range of environmental and socioeconomic drivers – these include climate change, rising health costs due to poor diets and increasing political risks. Taking a food systems approach will allow policy teams to see the connections between stakeholders, identify trade-offs, potential complementarities and any unintended consequences from policy development.”