Focus on food security and nutrition
From the ongoing pandemic to international tensions – global challenges have impacted food security. Whether you work in government or in other organizations tasked with delivering responses to counter this challenge, understanding where limited resources should be invested can help design effective responses. The international community marked World Food Day earlier this month by once again spotlighting the crucial need for sustainable food systems transformation. Intertwined with this objective is the goal of ensuring a healthy diet and nutrition for all. In this compelling conversation as part of the 3ie Evidence Dialogues video interview series, Nutrition International CEO Joel Spicer tells us how insufficient awareness, including of the evidence that already exists, and insufficient priority for nutrition is bankrupting health systems around the world. Invoking the global nutrition targets 2025, Spicer says the time-bound impact targets are heavily based on evidence – around stunting, wasting, low birthweight, anaemia and breastfeeding. He emphasizes the need to focus and invest in proven interventions backed by evidence to move much more quickly towards these goals. Spicer reiterates the need to prioritize high-impact low-cost interventions – especially preventive interventions.

Watch the full conversation to learn more about how investing in nutrition gets increased returns in other sectors.

3ie and our partners are engaged in several efforts to fill some of the gaps in evidence on what works to improve food security. Here is a round-up of evidence, publications, and events that might help navigate what we know.

Our Food systems and nutrition evidence gap map includes more than 2,000 studies on interventions in low-and middle-income from the last two decades and we are adding more. Our August 2022 update includes groundbreaking studies on the impacts of sugar-sweetened beverages, the effects of food system interventions on economic, social, and political stability, and much more. Check out this blog for a quick summary of what we found.

We also recommend reading our rapid evidence assessment (a targeted systematic review) on the effects of women’s empowerment interventions in food systems and a summary of findings on the effects of fiscal policies on diet quality and health.

Interested in finding more evidence? We are actively working on maps that focus on resilience and on food security in humanitarian settings. You can also see our previous work by visiting our Nutrition and Food Security portfolio page.
Reducing evaluation capacity disparities through holistic engagement in West Africa
In West Africa, 3ie's WACIE program is leveraging the connections it has forged through sustained engagement to strengthen evaluation capacity, generate essential new evidence and get it to the regional decision-makers who need it. The African Development Bank recently published a piece detailing our approach to building evaluation capacity through holistic engagement (French version here). We also just completed a process evaluation of a regional energy initiative supported by the West African Development Bank, and we're working with colleagues there toward turning the evaluation's findings into concrete improvements in organizational processes. In addition, our Helpdesk continues to provide timely evidence responding to real policymaker needs. We're currently working on questions from policymakers in Cote d'Ivoire, and our response for partners in Benin (english) earlier this year reached the attention of the government's highest levels. And we're moving forward with exciting plans for impact evaluations, so stay tuned! 
Read brief
Evaluation of IDEA project in Bangladesh: a baseline report

Past events

What Works Global Summit 2022 – Recovery and resilience
As part of the conference co-hosted by the Campbell Collaboration and Campbell UK & Ireland this year, 3ie participated in a session on Nutrition along with experts from Partnership for Economic Policy, International Centre for Evaluation and Development and Lanzhou University. 3ie's Charlotte Lane presented the 'Food Systems and Nutrition Evidence Gap Map, that reports on evidence from all key areas and intervention types within the food system and also identifies potential primary and synthesis evidence gaps.

Nutrition – Leveraging evidence mapping for rapid synthesis within the food systems sector
Date: 20 October 2022
Time: 8.30-9.30 am EDT | 12.30-13.30 UTC

Learn more here.

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Deadline extended | Journal of Development Effectiveness: Research Transparency, Reproducibility, and Ethics
We are inviting papers for a special issue of the Journal for Development Effectiveness focusing on ‘Trends in Research Transparency, Reproducibility, and Ethics for Development Effectiveness’. We are interested in projects, programs, policies, and practices that aim to improve the transparency, reproducibility, and ethical conduct of impact evaluations and/or test whether improvements in these areas improve development effectiveness. If you have a paper that fits our criteria, please send it to us by 31 March 2023. 

For this special issue, we have on board as guest editors Dr Alexandra Avdeenko, associated with the University of Heidelberg and World Bank, and Soazic Elise Wang Sonne, an economist with the Health, Nutrition and Population (HNP) Global Practice of the World Bank Group.