1. How to Get Started?
2. What Is Science Diplomacy?
3. Who Are the Science Diplomacy Stakeholders?
4. How Does the EU Practice Science Diplomacy?
5. What Are the National, Regional and Thematic Approaches of Science Diplomacy?
6. What Set of Skills Do I Need to Be a Good Science Diplomat?
7. Hands On! Case Studies
8. How Can You Dive Deeper into Science Diplomacy?
Satisfaction Survey

7.3.1 The Science Diplomacy Dimension

Even before declaring “Zero Hunger” as one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, food security has been high on both national and also international agendas. This includes a multitude of international actors, including the European Union (EU), the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the World Food Program (WFP), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), are interested in this topic. The partnership of the EU and the UN agencies on International Governance System and Food Nutrition Security has resulted in a Policy Framework on Food Security (PFFS). Today, the EU maintains bilateral cooperation with around 60 countries, while it continues to strengthen its joint actions with multilateral organisations, NGOs and international research organisations. So what is the role of science in this multitude of actors?

The authors draw on the widely-used categorisation of “diplomacy for science”, “science for diplomacy” and “science in diplomacy” in order to summarise the science diplomacy dimension:

  • Activities of international networking in food security research are an example of policy cooperation, and for instance can clearly be understood as “diplomacy for science”, or diplomacy facilitating international scientific cooperation.
  • The way the food security challenge is linked to issues of stability, conflict prevention, health, well-being, and/or migration also makes of Food security research activities a case of “science for diplomacy”, or as science cooperation improving international relations. Food security is also an important market issue for EU relationships with different regions, especially Africa.
  • Therefore what needs to be explored more precisely is how Food security can be seen as a case of “Science in diplomacy” or of science (food security research) advising and informing diplomacy (EU external relations). 

In sum, a more comprehensive way to understand food security as science diplomacy issue for the EU, is to analyse the interfaces between science (EU food security research) and diplomacy (food security as an issue for the EU as a global actor).

What the experts think

One of the authors of this research case study, Dr Pauline Ravinet, has been interviewed to provide you with some key highlights.

Pauline Ravinet

Assistant Professor of Political Science, CERAPS, University of Lille

How does food security affect science diplomacy, in particular in the EU-Africa relations?


Read more!
You may get all the information about this S4D4C case study in the following references:
– Ravinet, P., R. Cos, M. Young (2020): The science and diplomacy of global challenges: Food security in EU-Africa relations. In: Young, M., T. Flink, E. Dall (eds.) (2020): Science Diplomacy in the Making: Case-based insights from the S4D4C project (Link).
– Poster Report: “The science and diplomacy of global challenges: Food security in EU-Africa relations” (Link).

Creative Commons License
The material provided under this course is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.