Webinar: Civil Society Organisations & Food Aid: Lessons for an ongoing crisis?, 23 June 2020, 10:00-12:00


  • Andrew Boraine (CEO – WCEDP and coordinator of the NGO-Government Food Relief Coordination Forum);
  • Mymoena Scholtz (Where Rainbows Meet Training and Development Foundation);
  • Henriette Abrahams (Bonteheuwel Street Committee);
  • TBC (Black Sash);
  • Andy Du Plessis (Food Forward);
  • Egbert Wessels (PEDI);
  • Nandi Msezane (C19 Peoples’ Coalition – Food Working Group). 

Panelists will discuss the recent mobilisation of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) around the food security problem under lockdown and explore how these organisations have worked together, and with government, in a valiant attempt to provide a shared solution to an acute problem in a time of crisis. The meeting will also explore what the legacy of this mass CSO/ NGO mobilisation might be for local food governance in South Africa.

Under lock down food insecurity has sky rocketed into an acute and visceral problem that can no longer be ignored.  In Cape Town alone it is estimated that 1.6 million people and approximately 500 000 households are likely to require some form of food aid. The demand for emergency food aid has stretched the infrastructure and networks of both government and CSOs. In addition to a few large and more medium sized NGOs, an army of hundreds, possibly thousands, of small and community based CSO/ NGOs have assisted, including CANs (Community Action Networks) and community food kitchens. New networks and governance platforms have sprung up to provide coordination. For example, weekly CSO-government food relief coordination meetings in the Western Cape have been facilitated by the Economic Development Partnership (EDP).

This is not only a tremendous human response to a desperate crisis but also a potentially significant moment in food governance in the country. Prior to the lockdown, one of the factors thought to be preventing greater momentum behind achieving the right to food in South Africa was the lack of CSO mobilisation on the issue. Although food insecurity was recognised as a problem by some academics, government officials and CSOs, it was previously a hidden problem that did not garner widespread public attention or demands for change. But has this now changed? What are the challenges facing these organisations? How can they play a sustainable role in food governance beyond the Covid crisis? What do they need to do this? How can they be supported?

This important webinar is an initiative of the Food Governance Community of Practice, a collaborative partnership of the Centre of Excellence in Food Security (CoE-FS) and the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation.

For more information about the webinar, visit the CoE-FS website.

#FoodTalks SEMINAR: Student hunger and achieving the right to food for all, what role for universities?, 5 November 2019

The Centre for the Advancement of Scholarship (CAS) invites you to a #FoodTalks seminar on student hunger and achieving the right to food for all. The question being what role for universities? There will be academic, activist, and student perspectives brought by inputs from Professor Vishwas Satgar, Oluwafunmilola Adeniyi, and Elgin Hlaka. This event is organised in collaboration with the DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Food Security, the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation (GovInn), and the Human Economy Programme within CAS.

DATE Tuesday 5 November 2019
TIME 13:30 – 15:30
VENUE Old College House Seminar Lounge, 1-09, University of Pretoria
RSVP Cecelia Samson, 012 420 2653,

Too many students at our universities go hungry, negatively affecting their studies and their lives. At the same time, universities are sights of food selling and eating and are large buyers of food. There are great opportunities for universities to play a role in creating more sustainable and healthy food environments, for them to use their buying power to influence wider food systems,
and to inculcate healthy food production, processing and eating habits, not only in what they teach, but also in how they operate.

This #FoodTalks seminar will help us understand the food challenges and opportunities at universities, and to share from existing initiatives that are responding to these challenges.

Food talks to us at many levels, touching on important aspects of our lives and society. This is a continuation of a series of seminars that is bringing together leading thinkers and practitioners in the sector to share knowledge, and create a space to talk about the current food system and how we can move to a socially and ecologically regenerative, just and nourishing food system in South Africa and the region.


More details on this event can be found here.

Workshop Invitation: The State of Food Governance in South Africa, Wednesday, 25 September, 08:30-17:30

We would like to invite you to a workshop on ‘The State of Food Governance in South Africa’ on 25 September at the Future Africa Campus of the University of Pretoria. This event is part of the GovInn Week organised every two years by the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation.

The objective of this one-day workshop will be to continue the existing policy debate on food insecurity in South Africa. It will review and discuss what is known about the policies and programmes relating to food and nutrition security at national and local levels of governance; identify the main knowledge gaps; and then debate the major issues preventing effective food security governance in the country.

South Africa is food secure at the national level. However, food insecurity and malnutrition at the household level are high and the country has a poor record with regards to the prevalence of stunting, obesity and diet-related non-communicable diseases. Since 2002, a range of policies have attempted to address these high levels of food insecurity, yet food insecurity and malnutrition persist, which raises core concerns about the South African food system and its governance.

Please join us to discuss this critical policy problem currently facing South Africa. A draft programme can be found here.

RSVP by 5th September by following the link below

For more information please contact:, 083 260 4703

Call for Papers: Global Food Security Conference, 8-11 October 2017, Cape Town


The 3rd International Conference on Global Food Security will take place in Cape Town between the 8th and 11th October 2017. This conference is organised in association with the DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Food Security, the University of Pretoria, and the University of Western Cape.

Abstract submission deadline is 5 May 2017, on the following themes:
Theme 1: Culture and politics in food security
Theme 2: Social protection for food security
Theme 3: Sustainable intensification of food production systems
Theme 4: Transitions, urbanization and food security
Theme 5: The food-water-energy nexus
Theme 6: Plant, animal and bio-engineering science for food security
Theme 7: Reducing food losses and waste
Theme 8: Reducing risks to food production and distribution from climate change
Theme 9: Nutritional security
Theme 10: Business-science-community cooperation to advance food security
Theme 11: Public policy for food security
Theme 12: Food sovereignty and democratization of food systems

More information can be found at

Call for applicants BTC

Call for applications: 1-year scholarships in policy analysis, governance and development

Call for applicants BTC

The Belgian Technical Cooperation (BTC), in collaboration with GovInn – The Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation, the Post-Graduate School of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural development of the University of Pretoria, is offering one year scholarships in the fields of policy analysis and governance regarding development, for Master’s students engaging in their last/thesis year. The bursaries aim at promoting empirical fieldwork and research at the Master’s level.

Who should/can apply?

  • Students with an educational background in either sociology, political science, public administration, geography, anthropology, political economy, or socio-economy
  • Motivated students, with a well-structured research project, intending to finalize their Master’s thesis within 12 months
  • Master’s students engaging in their last/thesis year
  • Southern African citizens (priority will be given to South African students and South African related topics)

Which fields and topics are focused on?

  • Topics related to the broad field of development policy, in particular related to agriculture, rural development and natural resources governance in rural areas (agricultural and rural development policy, water policy, natural resource management, land reform, food security, etc.)
  • Topics related to public policies and governance – as the main object of research – will be prioritized.

What is included in the scholarship?

  • The scholarship will cover a monthly stipend for 12 months, 1-year registration fees and research costs related to the fieldwork for the Master’s thesis.

How to apply?

Applications should include:

1) A well-structured research project, including title, objectives, hypotheses, initial methodology and literature review, awaited results, preliminary calendar, academic/institutional set-up (discipline and supervisor) (3p. max)

2) Student’s CV

Applications should be send to Dr Ward Anseeuw ( and Dr Magalie Bourblanc (, with the supervisor in CC.

Application process and calendar:

Deadline for applications: February 28th 2015
Selection outcome announced by University of Pretoria and BTC: April 2015
Starting date bursary: April 2015

For additional information, contact and/or