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Global agri-food systems are undergoing a rapid transformation towards higher-value products, higher quality and food safety standards, and a higher degree of international and vertical integration. This is largely driven by changing consumer preferences and new opportunities for the agribusiness sector arising from globalization processes. The ramifications for industry structure, competitiveness, and social welfare will be far-reaching but are not yet well understood. Likewise, there are knowledge gaps for public and private sector policy making to enhance efficiency and equity outcomes. Developing countries in particular face technical and institutional constraints, potentially impeding a successful participation in emerging value chains. This will have implications for poverty and rural development, especially with a view to the small farm sector. There are also open questions about the impacts on food security and nutrition. While related aspects have been analyzed with a disciplinary focus, the innovation of the GlobalFood Research Training Group (RTG) is to take a broader interdisciplinary perspective.
GlobalFood combines approaches from agribusiness management, agricultural economics, development economics, and experimental economics in a novel way, to analyze the trends, driving forces, and implications of the agri-food system transformation and train a future generation of first-class researchers and policymakers in this international field.
GlobalFood combines expertise from the following units of the University of Göttingen:
- Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development
- Department of Economics
- Courant Research Center “Poverty, Equity, and Growth in Developing Countries”
All research and training activities are planned and implemented in close cooperation with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
GlobalFood was approved for funding by the German Research Foundation (DFG) in late 2010. The RTG has started in April 2011. The program builds on the broad experience of the Göttingen and IFPRI researchers involved and their partners around the world.