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[liberationtech] World Food Programme Launches Innovation Accelerator To Test Drive Hunger Solutions - 11 July 2016

Yosem Companys companys at
Mon Jul 11 05:57:19 PDT 2016

From: "Julie MARSHALL" <julie.marshall at>

*WFP News Release*

11 July 2016


*MUNICH* – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today stepped up
its search for innovative solutions to spur progress towards Zero Hunger by
launching an Innovation Accelerator to identify and nurture new, bold
responses to humanitarian and development challenges as outlined in the
Sustainable Development Goals.

Based in Munich, the Innovation Accelerator combines internal WFP staff
with experts and entrepreneurs from across the private sector and civil
society. Teams collaborate for three- to six-month periods on selected
ideas that are either proposed by WFP innovators with first-hand field
knowledge or crowd-sourced by engaging members of the general public.

“Every day WFP and our partners work to meet the emergency food assistance
needs of the world’s poorest, yet toughest people living in the most
vulnerable places around the globe.  What we do is not enough to achieve
our shared goal of ending hunger by 2030.  We must boldly seek new ideas,
tools and solutions that make more food available, accessible and
ultimately give every person everywhere the ability to feed her or his own
children. ” said WFP Executive Director Ertharin Cousin.

“We must capture the benefits of new technologies and the revolution in big
data. WFP’s desire to collaborate like never before ensures that by working
together we will transform how we serve, and the speed at which we
deliver.  As a result, we will overcome the persistent challenges that even
today keep generations locked in hunger and poverty,” Cousin said.

The world has made real progress by reducing the number of people suffering
from hunger by 200 million since the 1990s. Yet there are still 795 million
people who do not receive enough food for an active healthy life. The
Innovation Accelerator should be a key way to help reach Sustainable
Development Goal 2 and end hunger by 2030.

“Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals is ambitious and requires us
to accelerate our current efforts,” said Dr. Gerd Mueller, Federal Minister
for Economic Cooperation and Development in Germany. “The WFP Innovation
Accelerator will unlock the immense potential that German academia,
research institutions, the private sector and the development community
have to offer. Germany is currently the second-largest donor to WFP, and
investing in innovation will increase the value of our financial

German Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Frank Steinmeier, added,
“Germany has provided a record €570 million for Syria and the region alone,
but emergency aid on its own will not suffice.”

“New approaches must be found if we want to ensure that nobody on our
planet has to go hungry any more. To this end we need to enhance the links
between humanitarian aid, business, research and civil society. The
Innovation Accelerator will contribute to the development of new
technologies and business models which will benefit people in need,”
Steinmeier said.

The Accelerator is generously supported by contributions from the German
Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Federal
Foreign Office of Germany and the Bavarian State Ministry for Food,
Agriculture and Forestry. With 12 projects drawn from WFP’s global
operations currently in its portfolio, the Accelerator will both benefit
from and contribute to Munich’s strong innovation and start-up community.

“Bavaria is proud to support the establishment of a WFP office in Munich.
Through close collaboration with companies and research institutes based in
Bavaria, we can identify intelligent and sustainable solutions to global
hunger,” said Mr. Helmut Brunner, Bavarian State Minister of State for
Food, Agriculture and Forestry.

Ms. Cousin, Dr. Mueller, Dr. Steinmeier and Mr. Brunner were joined at the
launch by more than 200 guests committed to harnessing the power of new
technology, close collaboration and new ideas to create a world with Zero
Hunger. To mark the occasion, project teams and external start-ups pitched
their ambitious ideas of how to end global hunger.

#                              #                                 #

WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide,
delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to
improve nutrition and build resilience. Each year, WFP assists some 80
million people in around 80 countries.

Follow us on Twitter @WFP  @WFP_media | @WFPInnovation

*For more information please contact (email address:
firstname.lastname at <firstname.lastname at>):*

Frances Kennedy, WFP/Rome, Tel. +39 06 6513 3725, Tel. Mob. +34 67600806

Ralf Suedhoff, WFP/Berlin, Tel. +49 160 949 12547

Katharine Weltecke, WFP/Rome – in Munich  +49 172 410 56 77

Alex Sloan, WFP/Munich +49 170 247 52 83

Gregory Barrow, WFP/London, Tel.  +44 20 72409001, Mob.  +44 7968 008474

Gerald Bourke, WFP/New York, Tel. +1-646-5566909, Mob.  +1-646 525 9982

Julie Marshall, WFP/Toronto, Mob. 1 905 818 2664

*Note for journalists: to download hi-res pictures and additional material,
please go to our dropbox folder
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