AIRPOH is helping operationalize the One Health approach in an area intricately connected to agri-food systems and food security. The program, which responds to health and food systems’ need for intersectoral approaches to address global challenges, will help influence inclusive One Health approaches by supporting the production of regional public goods at a greater scale.
IDRC has a significant track record of supporting research initiatives that address crucial One Health research gaps. In line with this, IDRC has teamed up with the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) to spearhead AIRPOH. The initiative aims to foster a collaborative, multi-sectoral and integrated approach to safeguarding the health of humans, animals and the environment across six nations in East and Southeast Asia: Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, the Philippines, Timor-Leste and Vietnam.
With an initial combined investment of CAD4 million, the program’s first phase called for research proposals from across Southeast Asia, to address one or more of the following themes:
- the co-benefits of endemic zoonoses and foodborne disease control on national human and animal health systems, livestock trade, food and nutrition security and household resilience
- the role of agricultural land-use change on human and/or environmental health, and the opportunities for innovative perspectives and approaches in thinking around sustainable and safe food production from a One Health perspective
- innovative integrated disease-control models/tools that re-examine current disease control models for improvement and/or identify novel approaches to address issues such as animal and human health service delivery and environmental management
- evidence and policy for strengthening animal health systems to better support regional public goods such as food safety, pandemic preparedness and ecosystem health
The successful research proposals and implementing partners include:
- Cambodia — The role of agricultural and forest landscapes on human and environmental health in Cambodia, Royal University of Agriculture
- Indonesia, Laos, Philippines — Livestock enhancement through Ecohealth/One Health assessment in Southeast Asia, Institut Pertanian Bogor University, National University of Laos and the University of the Philippines Los Banos
- Philippines — Policy support to the Philippines’ National Surveillance and Control Programs for African Swine Fever, Avian Influenza and Antimicrobial Resistance: A One Health systems approach to animal food security, public health resiliency and environment sustainability, University of the Philippines Los Banos
- Timor-Leste — Developing strategies to reduce brucellosis transmission in Timor-Leste based on One Health collaboration, Menzies School of Health Research
ACIAR is the Australian government’s specialist agricultural research-for-development agency within the Australian aid program. Its purpose is to contribute to reducing poverty and improving the livelihoods of many in the Indo-Pacific region through more productive and sustainable agriculture emerging from collaborative international research. IDRC and ACIAR have been successfully collaborating to invest and support international agricultural research for development since 2013.