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International symposium on climate change and its impact on food and agriculture (12 June 2017)


31 Aug 2017



      On 12 June, Kyoto University's Graduate School of Agriculture (GSA), Graduate School of Advanced Integrated Studies in Human Survivability (GSAIS, or "Shikshu-Kan"), Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies (GSGES), and the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), jointly held an "International Symposium on the Impact of Climate Change on Food and Agriculture: Food Loss Reduction and Global Change in Agriculture" at the International Science Innovation Building. The event was organized to commemorate both the one-year anniversary of the June 2016 signing of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Kyoto U and FAO, and the 20th anniversary of the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol.

      GSAIS Professor Yosuke Yamashiki, who had served as the University's Focal Point for the MoU, first offered a brief introduction to the Symposium. Opening remarks were then delivered by GSA Dean Eiji Nawata, who greeted the attendees on the University's behalf; GSAIS Dean Kaoru Takara, who discussed KU-UN collaboration; and FAO Japan Liaison Office Director Charles Boliko, who reflected on the history of KU-FAO partnership.

      The main program began with two special lectures, one by Daisaku Kadokawa, mayor of the city of Kyoto, and by Dr Marcela Villarreal, FAO's director of partnerships, advocacy, and capacity development.

      Mayor Kadokawa discussed his government’s long-standing and fruitful collaboration with Kyoto University on the reduction of food waste, most notably under the leadership of two researchers -- Professor Shin-ichi Sakai of the KU Environmental Preservation Research Center, and Associate Professor Misuzu Asari of GSGES -- while Director Villarreal outlined the food waste initiatives and legislation of various other countries.

      These were followed by four sessions, including "Food Production and Losses Under Climate Change" and "Global Changes and Available Water Resources", featuring 12 presentations from KU faculty and students, and FAO representatives.

      At the end of these sessions, Director Misako Takahashi of the Economic Security Division, Economic Affairs Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), commented on the presentations delivered, expressed her expectations for both Kyoto University and FAO, and reported on MOFA's efforts to increase the number of Japanese FAO personnel.

      Closing remarks were delivered by GSGES Dean Shinya Funakawa.

      The Symposium was followed by a food event entitled "Bricolage Cooking -- FEAST at Our Kitchen". It was organized by Ayaka Nomura, PhD candidate at GSAIS, in association with the FEAST Project of the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature (RIHN) and the Kitchen Zukan ("kitchen picture book") project of Hoikuryoku Kenkyujo ("nursing power research institute"), a non-profit organization that had recently applied for corporate designation. Ms Nomura delivered opening remarks, explaining how this initiative can contribute to both the reduction of food waste and the promotion of communal eating, before inviting all present to sample the dishes.

      From left: FAO Japan Liaison Office's Director Boliko, FAO's Partnerships, Advocacy, and Capacity Development Director Villarreal, MOFA's Economic Security Director Takahashi, and GSAIS' Professor Yamashiki

      From left: GSGES' Dean Funakawa, GSA's Dean Nawata, Kyoto Mayor Kadokawa, and GSAIS' Dean Takara

      GSAIS' Ms Nomura reporting on food bank activities

      Bricolage Cooking -- FEAST at Our Kitchen, organized by Ms Nomura

      Symposium presenters

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      International symposium on climate change and its impact on food and agriculture (12 June 2017)
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