Tackling the Global Hunger Crisis
February 18th, 2022 12:00PM -1:00PM
In 2020, between 720 and 811 million people in the world faced hunger, with one in three people not having access to adequate food. Due to the lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global economy, moderate or severe food insecurity is climbing, with no end in sight. By 2050 the demand for food is expected to nearly double. What are the major drivers of food insecurity and malnutrition and how (and who) can address this startling humanitarian crisis? Join the World Affairs Council on February 18 from 12:00-1:00PM PST for a conversation with Caitlin Welsh, director of the Global Food Security Program at CSIS, and Jacob Kurtzer, director and senior fellow with the Humanitarian Agenda at CSIS, for a discussion on the outlook for global food security. Chase Sova, senior director of Public Policy and Research at World Food Program USA, will moderate this conversation.
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About the Speakers:
Caitlin Welsh is the director of the Global Food Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), where she provides insights and policy solutions to global and U.S. food security challenges. She brings over a decade of U.S. government experience to this role. She served most recently in the National Security Council and National Economic Council as director of global economic engagement, where she coordinated U.S. policy in the G7 and G20. Prior to the White House, Ms. Welsh spent over seven years in the Department of State’s Office of Global Food Security, including as acting director, offering guidance to the secretary of state on global food security and its relationship to urbanization, climate change, and conflict. Ms. Welsh served as a presidential management fellow at the U.S. African Development Foundation, and as a Peace Corps volunteer in Morocco. Her analysis on global and U.S. food security has been featured in The Economist, Foreign Policy, BBC, and other outlets. Ms. Welsh received her B.A. from the University of Virginia and M.P.A. from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs. She hails from Erie, Pennsylvania, and speaks Arabic and French.
Jacob Kurtzer is director and senior fellow with the Humanitarian Agenda, an initiative that leverages the expertise of CSIS programs to explore complex humanitarian challenges. Prior to joining CSIS, Mr. Kurtzer spent seven years with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), most recently as head of communications for the ICRC Delegation in Israel and the occupied territories. Previously, he served as head of public and congressional affairs for the Washington Delegation of the ICRC, representing the ICRC to a broad spectrum of audiences in the United States and Canada. In addition, he has conducted field missions in South Sudan, and Rakhine State, Myanmar and spent nearly three years as a consultant with the ICRC delegation in Pretoria, South Africa. From 2007-2009, he served as the congressional advocate at Refugees International (RI), a humanitarian advocacy organization based in Washington D.C. Mr. Kurtzer began his career as a legislative assistant to Congressman Robert Wexler of Florida covering domestic and foreign policy issues, including managing the Congressional Indonesia Caucus. Mr. Kurtzer earned an M.A. in peace and conflict studies from the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, where he studied as a Rotary Foundation World Peace Fellow. He also holds a B.A. in philosophy from the University of Maryland, College Park, with a citation in religious studies, and is an alumnus of the College Park Scholars Public Leadership program.
About the moderator:
Chase Sova is senior director of Public Policy and Research at World Food Program USA (WFP USA). Previously, Chase worked with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS). He has consulted with the World Bank, Johns Hopkins, and Tufts University. Interested in the intersection of food insecurity and conflict, humanitarian assistance, climate change, and sustainable agriculture, Chase has worked on food systems in 15 developing countries across Latin America, sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. He has led several major research initiatives including WFP USA’s Winning the Peace: Hunger and Instability flagship report. Chase has served as an expert witness at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, his writing has been featured extensively in peer-reviewed journals, and he regularly lectures on food insecurity at Universities in Washington, D.C. He delivered a TEDx talk on “Winning the Long Game in the Fight to End Hunger” in 2018. Chase earned his Ph.D. from Oxford University.