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Research award 2021: Climate resilience and sustainable food systems

Deadline: September 16, 2020

Please note that all applications must be submitted online.

IDRC is one of the world’s leaders in generating new knowledge to meet global challenges. We offer several research awards that provide a unique opportunity to enhance research skills and gain a fresh perspective on crucial development issues. These one‐year, paid, in‐house programs of training and mentorship allow research award recipients to pursue their research goals and work in one of IDRC’s dynamic program teams.

The synergy between climate change, food insecurity, and the double burdens of undernutrition and overweight require systemic changes to food production systems and the drivers of consumption. We aim to enable a better understanding of the co-benefits of action and the opportunities to promote coherence between sectoral policies and interventions. This development outcome area explores research that enables countries and communities to transform food systems to be more sustainable, equitable, resilient and health promoting in the context of major environmental and climatic risks and a global nutrition transition.

IDRC is looking for a research award recipient to conduct research intended to inform food systems change, such as cross-sector approaches and strategies for improving coherence between public policies and regulations that impact food systems, human and natural environments, and climate resilience. This may include research on:

  • the drivers or enablers of change in food environments to improve the quality and sustainability of diets at the population level;
  • empirical and/or modelling studies to quantify the current and future social, environmental, or economic costs of different production or consumption patterns;
  • studies of carbon emissions and reduction options due to agriculture, food systems, and land use in the Global South; and
  • research to inform the design, implementation, and/or evaluation of fiscal and regulatory interventions that aim to contribute to healthier consumption and sustainable production.

This work would inform scholarship and practice on approaches that can yield win-win-win opportunities for enhancing food systems, health, and resilience.

The successful candidate will allocate 50% of their time to a research project relating to the above topic(s) under the guidance of a senior program officer. The awardee will be expected to prepare a research plan, provide progress updates during the year, and present their findings at the end of the year. The other 50% of the successful candidate’s time will involve IDRC program operations, which may include tasks such as supporting calls for proposals under the program, scoping opportunities for research and partnering, coordinating upcoming workshops and events, and preparing internal and external reports.

Applicants should clearly outline their qualifications for this position and explain how this opportunity will advance their career goals.

Who can apply?

You must meet the requirements stated in the IDRC Research Awards 2021 call page to be eligible. 

Candidates should also have the following qualifications:

  • general interest in research on the nexus between food systems, climate resilience, and health;
  • knowledge and interest in the global and development discourse on food systems transformation and climate action and their impacts on equity;
  • experience working/researching in a developing country;
  • strong research and analytical skills; and
  • strong verbal and written communication skills.

It is highly desirable that the candidate has completed a master’s program related to one or more of the following disciplines: 

  • Environmental studies/economics
  • Development studies/international development
  • Political science/public policy
  • Public health nutrition
  • Agri-food systems/economics

Preference will be given to candidates who have completed a master’s or are enrolled in a PhD.

Your research proposal should demonstrate a clear research question connected to one of the areas of interest above and identify source(s) of data and the analytical methods to be used. The proposal should also describe a potential audience that could benefit from this work, in addition to outlining approaches to reach that audience and enabling the research to make a potential impact.

Language requirements:

  • Bilingual position (English/French) at an intermediate level